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Active StretchingPopular health The stretching of agonist muscles while opposed by the antagonists.
Physical therapy Stretching of an extremity in which a position is assumed and then held with no assistance other than the strength of the agonist muscles—e.g., raising the leg, then holding it, using only the leg muscles to maintain extension. The tension of the agonists in active stretching helps to relax the muscles being stretched (the antagonists) by reciprocal inhibition. Active stretching increases flexibility and strengthens agonistic muscles. Active stretching positions may be difficult to hold and maintain for more than 10 seconds and rarely need to be held any longer than 15 seconds. Many of the movements/stretches in yoga are active stretches.