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January 18, 2023

3 Ways Chiropractors Improve Range of Motion

3 Ways Chiropractors Improve Range of Motion

What is Range of Motion?

For any given joint in your body, there is an ideal range of motion. This is the extent or limit to which a part of the body can be moved around a joint or a fixed point, it’s the total movement a joint is capable of doing.

Within range of motion, there is both active and passive range of motion. Passive range of motion is the total movement of a joint while using a tool or gravity to pull or push you into that range. Conversely, active range of motion is your range of motion without the assistance of tools or gravity.

For example, if you're laying on your back and a chiropractor takes your leg and lifts it to 90 degrees, that’s passive range of motion. If you lay on your back and lift your leg on your own and only raise it 60 degrees, that is your active range of motion. This would show there is 30 degrees more of passive range than active range. Ideally, the gap between active and passive range of motion should be about 10% or less.

Why is Range of Motion Important?

Bones, ligaments, muscles, and tendons support each joint in your body, allowing your body to move within a specific range. With a good range of motion, your joints move easily and comfortably, allowing your body to function efficiently, and decrease your risk of injury.

Range of motion is not only important to athletic performance, but it also increases your ability to function during daily living.

Team Elite’s 3-Prong Approach to Range of Motion

Soft Tissue Work

The first aspect of Team Elite’s approach to increasing range of motion is through soft tissue work. We use Active Release Technique, cupping, and IASTM. These tools and techniques are used to target the soft tissue and the fascia that surrounds the joints. We begin our work by loosening the muscles and fascia that surrounds a joint, which makes the joint easier to move when we do an adjustment.


Once we complete the soft tissue work, we’ll administer any necessary chiropractic adjustments. This high velocity, low amplitude thrust, will target the specific joint that is stuck that we are trying to loosen. When we do adjustments, we take a joint to the end of its range of motion and then give a little thrust to help free it up and ideally move it further. 


Once we provide the soft tissue work and adjustments to loosen up the joint, we provide corrective exercises for each patient to maintain that range of motion we’ve uncovered through treatment. The corrective exercises are unique to each patient and the particular joints that are lacking range of motion. 

Functional Range Conditioning®

Team Elite holds certification in Functional Range Conditioning®, a comprehensive joint training system based on scientific principles and research, developed by world-renowned musculoskeletal expert Dr. Andreo Spina. 

There are three aspects to this certification program: 

  • Mobility Development: the amount of active, usable motion that one possesses. The more mobile a person is, the more they can maximize their movement potential safely, efficiently, and effectively
  • Joint Strength: while improving mobility and movement potential, the FRC® system also acts to safeguard your joints so that movement can be executed safely 
  • Body Control: training with FRC® improves the function of your nervous system. This leads to a reduction of pain and injury, joint health and longevity, as well as an increased ability to move freely and easily

Team Elite is the premier San Diego-Based provider of comprehensive chiropractic care that addresses range of motion for athletes and athletic-minded individuals. 

Each new patient starts with a Selective Functional Movement Assessment that gives us a complete picture of how someone moves.

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