Acute effects of The Stick on strength, power, and flexibility

J Strength Cond Res. 2002 Aug;16(3):446-50.


The Stick is a muscle massage device used by athletes, particularly track athletes, to improve performance. The purpose of this project was to assess the acute effects of The Stick on muscle strength, power, and flexibility. Thirty collegiate athletes consented to participate in a 4-week, double-blind study, which consisted of 4 testing sessions (1 familiarization and 3 data collection) scheduled 1 week apart. During each testing session subjects performed 4 measures in the following sequence: hamstring flexibility, vertical jump, flying-start 20-yard dash, and isokinetic knee extension at 90 degrees x s(-1). Two minutes of randomly assigned intervention treatment (visualization [control], mock insensible electrical stimulation [placebo], or massage using The Stick [experimental]) was performed immediately prior to each performance measure. Statistical analyses involved single-factor repeated measures analysis of variance (ANOVA) with Fisher's Least Significant Difference post-hoc test. None of the variables measured showed an acute improvement (p < or = 0.05) immediately following treatment with The Stick.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Exercise / physiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Massage / instrumentation*
  • Muscle Contraction
  • Muscle, Skeletal / physiology*
  • Range of Motion, Articular