Joint Manipulation Techniques in Osteopathy

Joint ManipulationJoint manipulation is a manual method and consists mainly of two different techniques – direct and indirect. Increased range of motion, decreased pain, improved joint function, restored normal joint functioning, stabilized joint and reduced risk of re-injury are some of the benefits of joint manipulation.

Osteopathic manipulation techniques are implemented to correct abnormalities in the musculoskeletal system, which is made up of muscles, nerves and bones. Back pain, headaches, joint injuries, and depression etc, can be treated by these techniques.

In the recent years, a manipulation technique called Visceral manipulation is gaining increased popularity as an osteopathic treatment for problems throughout the body. Some of its benefits include increased body natural healing, improved organ function, relieved stress and increased metabolism.

Here are the different joint manipulation techniques:

Direct Technique:

High velocity low amplitude (HVLA) thrust technique is a direct joint manipulation techniques used to increase joint mobility. For understanding better, let us compare a stuck desk drawer to a blocked joint. In direct technique, the drawer is pulled outward towards the restrictive barrier that made the drawer stuck in quick but slow range of motion.

Indirect Technique :

Consider the same example of the stuck drawer. Instead of pulling the stuck drawer outward toward the restrictive barrier, the drawer is pushed away from the barrier (inward) and then swiftly pulled outward to relieve and get rid of the barrier.

Combination or Articulatory technique:

Combination joint manipulation makes use of both direct and indirect techniques. This involves using high amplitudes (large range of motion) and slow movements away and toward the restrictive barrier. This technique uses the joints entire range of movement, while stretching the adjacent connected tissue near the joint.

There are also neurological (pertaining to nervous system) models that explain the effectiveness of indirect techniques in the improvement in the corrected joint functioning.

A common joint inflammation complaint is sacroiliac joint pain. For mild pain, sacroiliac exercises can help relief the intensity of the pain but it is always advisable to consult a qualified doctor of osteopathy who is licensed to perform the manipulation techniques to avoid unpleasant side effects.