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Manual therapy, or hands-on treatment of soft tissue and joints are a skill that many physiotherapists practice. The intended effect is to improve tissue extensibility, improve range of motion, mobilize or manipulate soft tissues and joints, induce relaxation, change muscle function, modulate pain, and reduce swelling and inflammation.
The treatment may include moving joints in specific directions with differing speeds, muscle stretching, passive movements of joints, muscle activation against the therapist’s resistance, and soft tissue techniques.