Joint mobilization in Physical Therapy


It’s a manual therapy technique that a physical therapist uses to normalize the body’s joints.

The physical therapist uses pressure on the joint to restore its function. There are several methods of joint mobilization therapy. The degree of damage to the joints and the individual’s bearing capacity will determine the technique used. If you’re in the area, visit the best San Diego Physical Therapy Clinic.

Types of joint mobilization therapy

It is often divided into the three following types

  • Oscillatory Joint Mobilizations: This is when gentle pressure is applied to the joint with low-velocity and variable amplitude. The intensity of this mobilization varies depending on how comfortable the patient is.
  • Sustained joint mobilisations: This is, as the name suggests, a pulling or tugging-type motion that is maintained constant for a brief period. This mobilization is intended to reduce joint compression, and stretch the surrounding soft tissues.
  • Manipulation refers to an excessive motion at high speed with low amplitude. It’s usually performed in a tight path.

Grades of mobilization

These grades allow you to differentiate between different levels.

  • Grade 1

It is slow in speed, but small in amplitude. The joint arc of motion is a series of back-and-forth movements.

  • Grade 2

It is slow in motion but has a large amplitude.

  • Grade 3

It is slow in velocity but has a large amplitude back-and-forth motion. It is applied at the middle to end joints arc of motion

  • Grade 4

It is slow and small in amplitude, and it is used at the ends of joints arcs of motion

  • Grade 5

It is a high-speed, small-amplitude thrusting movement applied at the ends of joint available motion.

Benefits of joint mobilization

This form of physical therapy can reduce pain, increase range of motion, and improve the overall function in the targeted area. It is unclear how joint mobilization works. However, it is thought that it activates the sympathetic nervous system. While most scientists agree that it can only be used for a short period of time and is therefore temporary, there is not enough evidence to support this. Joint mobilization, despite all the scientific discussion and facts, is still considered an effective treatment for some diseases, such as osteoarthritis and low back and neck pains. It can also be used to treat wrist fractures. We can help! Visit the #1 La Jolla Physical Therapy Clinic.


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