Manual therapy, the use of direct manual force on the body, is used for treating musculoskeletal pain and debility.
Manual therapy is the hands on approach to chiropractic, rather than relying on devices or machines. Using their hands, chiropractors apply pressure on the muscle tissue and maneuver the joints in an effort to reduce pain associated with muscle tension, muscle spasm and joint dysfunction. It is also used to help improve mobility in areas such as joints, connective tissues, skeletal muscles or other areas that may feel restricted.
Manipulation is often associated with the commonly heard audible popping sound when joints are being manipulated. This sound is caused by the instantaneous breakdown of gas bubbles that form during joint cavitation.