What are joint mobilisations and should I have them?


Article by Rhys Veen


Published in 2023


Joint mobilisations are a valuable hands-on treatment method provided by our expert physiotherapists at Veen Physiotherapy in Bunbury, WA. This safe and effective technique involves the stabilization of one joint while applying precise pressure or traction to the joint above or below it. The applied force is directed in a plane of motion that targets tight areas. Depending on your needs and goals, different types of joint mobilisations can be employed.

Types of Joint Mobilizations:

  1. Sustained Joint Mobilisations: This technique is employed to alleviate joint compression and enhance the flexibility of surrounding soft tissues. It involves a controlled, prolonged pulling or traction applied for a specific duration.
  2. Oscillatory Joint Mobilisations: Designed to improve joint stiffness and tissue compliance, this technique involves the application of graded pressure to the soft tissues, adjusted to your comfort level. The pressure varies in terms of speed and range of motion, tailored to the compliance of the tissue.
  3. Manipulation: Used to address joint tightness, manipulation entails a high-speed thrust applied to the affected joints in the direction of tightness. Often, coordinated breathing techniques are employed to relax surrounding muscles. Joint mobilization aims to reduce pain, enhance range of motion, and improve overall function. While the exact mechanisms are not fully understood, research suggests that it may:
    • Elicit an increased response from the sympathetic nervous system.
    • Reduce sensitivity of nerves in the affected area to mechanical pressure that typically causes soreness.

Joint mobilisations have shown efficacy for various joints throughout the body, with a particular focus on cervical, thoracic, and lumbar joints.

At Veen Physiotherapy in Bunbury, WA, we offer expert joint mobilisation techniques to improve pain, range of motion, and function for patients. Our physiotherapists are dedicated to providing safe and effective hands-on treatment. If you have any questions or would like to learn more about joint mobilisation, please do not hesitate to reach out to us – veenphysiotherapy@gmail.com


  1. Pfluegler, G., Kasper, J., & Luedtke, K. (2020). The immediate effects of passive joint mobilisation on local muscle function: A systematic review of the literature. Musculoskeletal Science and Practice, 45, 102106.

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