Physio VS Chiro

Physiotherapy and Chiropractors have some similarities.  Both disciplines treat and manage pain and stiffness in your body, but their approaches can be slightly different.

In this blog I will take you through the two disciplines, how they differ, what benefits they offer, and how to choose between the two if you have pain, joint stiffness, or difficulty moving.

Physiotherapist VS Chiropractor 

There are excellent Physiotherapists and sub-par Physiotherapists – the same goes with Chiropractors.  We have all heard the horror stories – There is good and bad in every profession, however people just tend to remember the bad and forget the good.

Chiropractors treat, diagnose and prevent mechanical disorders of the musculoskeletal system much like a Physiotherapist, however Chiro’s predominately focus on mechanical issue’s effecting the spine/neck, mid and lower back.  Where as Physio’s focus more on rehabilitation and extremities.   

Similarities between Physiotherapy & Chiropractic Care

Much like Physiotherapist, Chiropractor’s treatment methods include multiple different forms of soft tissue therapy, rehabilitation exercises and patient education.  Chiropractor’s use a technique call spinal manipulation therapy (SMT) more commonly known as an adjustment or manipulation, yet not everyone needs to be adjusted and soft tissue therapy or mobilisations of a joint are enough to provide positive change.  However, Physiotherapist have a deeper knowledge and skill set of exercise rehabilitation of specific injuries e.g. Lower Back pain, Shoulder & ACL reconstruction/rehabilitation.  

What does a Trained Physiotherapist do?

Firstly – at Trained Physio & Fitness our Physiotherapists are all Musculoskeletal Physiotherapists Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy is a specialised area within physiotherapy that focuses on accurate assessment, diagnosis and treatment of musculoskeletal injuries. Musculoskeletal injuries are injuries to joints, muscles, bones and/or nerves.”

Our Trained Physiotherapist focuses on improving your ability to move and function without pain.  They will also educate you on ways to stay active and healthy which, in turn, helps boost your quality of life.

Physiotherapy Treatment May Include:

  • Evaluation of your pain and movement
  • Hands-on therapy such as massage or dry needling
  • Exercises Rehabilitation
  • Posture education with instruction on how to move to avoid injury or pain

What does a Trained Chiropractor do?

Chiropractors are licensed practitioners with Doctorate Degrees who use hands-on approach to ease pain and inflammation by manipulating parts of your body.

Chiropractic care, like Physiotherapy does not involve taking medications or undergoing surgery.  You may want to try Chiropractic care before undergoing more invasive treatments.  Chiropractic care covers many health conditions for a variety of people and focuses specifically on the musculoskeletal and nervous systems.

Chiropractic Treatment May Include:

  • Evaluate symptoms based on a physical exam and tests
  • Provide adjustments to areas of the body or use techniques like spinal manipulation to help decrease pain
  • Hands-on therapy such as massage or dry needling
  • Recommend certain exercises at home or making lifestyle adjustments to reduce pain and inflammation

What is a Chiro Adjustment?

An Chiro adjustment is a high-velocity low amplitude thrust (HVLA) to a joint(s) which in most cases creates an audible “pop or cracking” sound (known as a cavitation) which most people are familiar with.  This occurs when the joints passive range of motion is proceeded by the thrust of the practitioner and overcomes the remaining joint tension.  The audible sound heard with an adjustment of the spine is the same sound and mechanism heard when you crack your fingers.  Simply, it is taking the joint to end range of motion into the para physiological space, in which the natural gas bubble between the joint articular surface’s pops. If an audible sound is not heard it does not mean the treatment was not effective.

Who do I choose? Physio or Chiro?

Both Physiotherapy and Chiropractic care focus on managing pain and other symptoms using noninvasive techniques. Both disciplines use hands-on therapy to treat specific conditions.  Both focus on how the body moves and functions as a whole.

Who you chose and why is completely up to you.  When choosing a practitioner from any profession, it should be based on patient’s preferences and values.  Every profession has areas of growth and learning which can be undertaken.  As long as you are provided with some symptomatic relief, education specific to your lifestyle and condition, rehabilitation exercises and a clear pathway forward for your unique and individual goals, you made the right choice.

East Perth Trained Chiro

  • Chiropractor
  • BSc (Chiropractic Science) & BClinChiro (Clinical Chiropractic)
  • Personal Trainer (Cert III & IV)
  • Massage Therapist (Cert III)