Spine Cracking – is it safe?

Have you ever had the urge to crack your own joints? Have you been obsessed with watching all these chiropractic videos online which shows people having their joints adjustments and spine cracked?

I’m going to tell you whether it’s safe and if you should even have it done.

As a professional chiropractor and osteopath I don’t actually “crack” anything. That’s because “cracking” implied a break or fracture. So let’s redefine what we are saying. The space between the bones are the “joints”. It’s the joints that get mobilised.

When I palpate (fancy word for clinically examine using sense of touch) someone’s spine I can tell how well those joints are moving, or not.

Like any skill, palpation takes years of training and practice to hone in that skill. In fact you can see this in a lot of my videos, right before I adjust someone’s spine I will palpate their joints to find which levels I will be adjusting at that particular session.

Although I can treat others and adjust their joints, I find it really frustrating that I cannot adjust myself.


That’s purely because it’s not possible for me to be able to generate the force on the joints that require it if I try it on myself.

If you have clicked your own joints, the chances are you most likely have cavitated the joints that were already moving, or probably moving too much.

“Doesn’t cracking your knuckles cause arthritis?” Actually that’s a myth and simply not true. I think it originated from a couple of places. Either to scare children from doing it. Or because when a joint cavitates, it creates more movement, and if your fingers happen to get caught and injured, that injury is a predisposition to earlier onset osteoarthritis.

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