Chiropractors are highly trained in a variety of manual manipulation techniques. They may also use instrument-assisted methods that require less force than a chiropractor’s hands.

The activator method uses a hand-held mechanical tool that delivers a series of gentle impulsive forces to restore motion to targeted spinal joints and vertebrae. The technique feels similar to a gliding massage.


The flexion-distraction technique also called the Cox technique, is a gentle spinal manipulation that helps alleviate pressure on the spinal nerves and the spine. This technique uses a unique treatment table that distracts and flexes the spine in a slow, rhythmic motion. It works excellent for herniated or bulging discs, spinal stenosis, and sciatica because it takes pressure off the injured discs and spine to promote healing.

It is a low-force method that doesn’t use much manipulation, making it safer than other techniques. It also gently stretches the deeper layers of back muscles, which can’t be pulled on your own.

The Thompson Drop technique, or the Thompson terminal point method, involves a specialized treatment table with padded sections that can drop an inch. This technique, which consists of adjusting your skull or stretching your back gently, can help with various issues, from neck pain to migraine headaches.

Thompson Drop Technique

Thompson Drop Technique, or Drop Table Technique, is another whole spine adjusting method that combines precision with patient comfort. Developed by chiropractor J Clay Thompson in 1955, the technique uses a unique changing table with segmented “drops” that lower various parts of your back. The drops allow the Greenville chiropractor to thrust faster and carry your spine through its full range of motion, resulting in more powerful and effective adjustments.

This procedure feels like a gentle stretch to patients and can treat various spinal conditions, including herniated discs, scoliosis, and facet joint pain. The flexion distraction method takes the pressure off injured spinal nerves and relieves spinal disc bulging.

The Thompson technique utilizes a unique treatment table with padded sections or drop pieces. When the chiropractor delivers a quick force, the individual segments of the table give way and reduce the energy needed to adjust your spine.


Like a building, the human body needs a solid foundation to support its structure. If the hips, lower back vertebrae, and legs are not level, it can cause a misalignment of the spinal bones and pressure on the spongy discs that separate them. As a result, the body is unbalanced and can experience pain as it tries to compensate. Chiropractors take a whole-body approach to identify and correct these core structural issues.

They use full spine X-rays to consider the entire patient in their analysis and treatment. It allows them to avoid the rotational pre-stress often associated with rotary chiropractic methods, which could potentially damage the spine or herniated disks.

Additionally, chiropractors look at each patient and select which spine levels should be adjusted for maximum health benefit. It is very different from the shotgun approach used in other chiropractic methods. The adjustment is performed using hands-on manipulation to restore balance and function to the body.

Activator Method

This technique involves identifying spinal or extremity joint misalignments using an instrument-based method that uses a hand-held device to deliver quick impulses, treating the source of the pain. This treatment is fast, reliable, and clinically proven to help patients with musculoskeletal issues, including back and neck pain.

Unlike the more aggressive manual Diversified technique, the activator method utilizes a spring-loaded tool to generate a lighter and faster thrust. It is also more precise, allowing chiropractors to target a specific area of the spine or joint. As a result, the muscles in that particular region are less likely to tense up and resist treatment.

This method can be especially effective for babies, seniors, and people sensitive to pressure or touch. It is also less jarring and intimidating than manual manipulations, an excellent option for individuals who may sive about receiving chiropractic care. It also doesn’t require the chiropractor to leverage bones to manipulate joints, which benefits pregnant patients or those with osteoporosis.

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