Manual Therapy

At Doonan Physio we offer great hands-on treatment.  The only electrical machine we may use occasionally is an Ultrasound, which can assist in healing of sports injuries.  Otherwise all treatment is completely hands on, with a variety of treatment methods available to choose from depending on your presentation.  

This may include some localised massage and trigger point therapy, gentle mobilisations of restricted joints, Mulligan's mobilisations with movement, Muscle energy techniques, Acupuncture or Dry Needling and occasionally, if appropriate (and only if you are comfortable with it), spinal manipulation. You will also be given some specific exercises to help with your recovery.

Physiotherapist, chiropractor giving a b


Mobilisations are a technique that produces small, controlled movement to increase movement in a restricted joint (peripheral i.e. knee, shoulder) or spinal (facet joint or SIJ). This technique not only increases the available movement at the joint, but can also stimulate lubrication (synovial fluid) around the joint. This can reduce pain in the joint and surrounding tissue, and help with flexibility and alignment.

Mulligan's Technique

Brian Mulligan, a New Zealand physiotherapist, pioneered this gentle effective soft tissue and joint mobilization combined with the patient’s own body movements.  Great for headaches, arm and shoulder pain, sciatica, back pain and much more.

Myofascial Trigger Points

Myofascial trigger points are an extremely common cause of pain. Trigger points are painful when pressed on, cause a shortening of the muscle fibres, and have a special property called referred pain. Referred pain means that a trigger point in one muscle can create pain in another area. Read more..


Muscle Energy Techniques

Muscle Energy Technique (MET) is a form of manual therapy which uses a muscle’s own energy in the form of gentle isometric contractions to relax the muscles via autogenic or reciprocal inhibition, and lengthen the muscle. As compared to static stretching which is a passive technique in which therapist does all the work, MET is an active technique in which patient is also an active participant.

Muscle energy techniques are based on the philosophy that the muscle spindles can be reset and relaxed to help relax muscles in constant spasm, all the way from the neck and shoulder down to the Lumbo-pelvic girdle. The techniques are very gentle, safe and very effective.

Spinal Manipulation

Spinal manipulation is a high-velocity low-amplitude thrust.  This gentle thrust can release a  locked or restricted joint and can relieve pain by reducing joint stiffness and malpositions.  The manipulation often results in an audible "pop", which is caused by release of nitrogen gas as the joint is gapped.

The manipulation is performed using the practitioners hands or by a device to apply a controlled force to a joint of the spine.

Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist is trained to know exactly when and where to apply manipulation. Although these techniques are more intensive than those used by other Physiotherapists, they will always be applied safely and effectively and only if you're comfortable with it.