Force and Speed Characteristics of Posterior to Anterior Thoracic Spinal Manipulations by Different Chiropractors

M.R. Gudavalli (USA)


Chiropractic, Loads, Mannequin, rate of loading, posterior to anterior thrusts


Chiropractors treat spinal conditions using manually applied forces to improve spinal function. Doctor of chiropractic applies quick dynamic loads as part of treatment. The objective of this paper was to measure the three dimensional characteristics of thrusts delivered to the thoracic spine by three different chiropractors. A total of 36 thrusts were delivered by the three chiropractors to a mannequin that has similar shape and texture of a human. A three-dimensional force transducer was used between the doctor’s hand and the mannequin. Parameters of the duration, rate of loading, preload and peak loads were extracted from the data for the three chiropractors. The data shows that the three clinicians have distinct thrust characteristics. Three dimensional forces and moments were observed. Peak loads in the normal direction reached 562N, and 97N in the hand contact shear forces. Rates of loading have reached 3016N/s with maximum duration times of 556ms and a minimum duration times of 112ms. This study provides a system for quantifying the three dimensional load characteristics on a mannequin. Future studies should aim at the training of the clinicians at specific ranges and use this information in clinical trials on patients to determine the optimal treatment parameters.

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