What is Spinal Manipulation

What is Spinal Manipulation 2017-08-16T23:07:58+00:00

With certain body postures and daily activities (or lack of activities: computers, driving, watching TV, playing video games, etc.), the joints of the body, including those of the spine will begin to dysfunction, and do not move as freely and naturally as Nature intended. The term for this condition is Sub-lux-ation. Subluxation is two words actually, sub meaning less than, below or minor and -luxation meaning dislocation. So a subluxation is basically a minor dislocation of a joint. Subluxations not only result in dysfunctions of the joint, but also pain, muscle tension, and altered body mechanics.  Subluxations can also result in physiologic disorders of the body’s organs and its functions; a condition we know as dis-ease, or disease.

Spinal manipulation-more specifically chiropractic manipulation or the adjustment-is meant to restore a more normal and natural motion to the subluxated joints and ultimately better function to the body. Pills and medications can have a similar effect, and do so biochemically, where as the effect created by spinal manipulation is biomechanical, and is accomplished without the side effects of drugs and chemicals.

Keep in mind that what the chiropractor is trying to do with the adjustment is not necessarily put your spine or any other joint back into place, like a dislocated finger or shoulder, but rather influence the function of an improperly moving joint and its adverse effect on overall body function and wellness.

What is the “Popping Noise?”

One of the questions I am asked most frequently is, “What is the popping noise?”

Whether you’ve been to a chiropractor or not, we’ve all stretched at one time or another and heard something go “pop”. In most cases the popping  noise was associated with a sense of relief and/or  freedom of movement, and there is a belief that something must have gone back into place.

This is not really the case, anymore than just because you made something go “pop” you are automatically a chiropractor! In fact, the popping noise itself is inconsequential as is how loud it popped or how many times.

Surrounding the joints are ligament capsules that contain nitrogen gas. Like a pop gun, the popping noise is nothing more than the displacement of nitrogen gas going from one side of the capsule to the other. POP! All the chiropractor is trying to do with the adjustment is influence joint function and improve any associated biomechanical or physiologic dysfunctions.


Although most commonly used to reduce back pain, chiropractic spinal manipulation is not just for people experiencing pain. In fact, if you wait until you do feel pain, any biomechanical and physiologic dysfunction/disorders associated with sub-luxation of the spine or other regions can delay recovery and in some cases prevent it altogether.

If there really is a Fountain of Youth, it’s name is mobility, and chiropractic spinal manipulation is a great tool to get your body functioning the way Nature intended- Naturally!