Clinical Autonomic Research

, Volume 14, Issue 1, pp 15–18 | Cite as

Stretching increases heart rate variability in healthy athletes complaining about limited muscular flexibility



An increase in muscular flexibility, as well as a significant beneficial effect on heart rate and heart rate variability (HRV), was observed in healthy male athletes after performing a standardized 15-minute stretching-program over a period of 28 days. We believe the HRV increase to be due, at least in part, to the improved vagal and/or diminished sympathetic control. Therefore, we recommend stretching as an effective and gentle technique for health protection.

Key words

heart rate variability stretching psycho-neuro-cardiac tone 


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Copyright information

© Steinkopff Verlag 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Dept. of Psychotherapy & Psychosomatic MedicineDresden University of TechnologyDresdenGermany
  2. 2.Institute of Physiology and CardiologyUniversity of ErlangenErlangenGermany

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