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Performance Chiropractic Glossary of Terms



Activator is a patented instrument used to deliver a controlled force to move a joint and affect the local (and often regional or even brain) neurology.

Active Release Technique (ART)™

This treatment method involves active movement and manipulation to remove scar tissue in soft tissues such as muscles, ligaments and/or tendons. Treatment can feel uncomfortable during the movement phase however, most patients feel a good pain which will subside after treatment. This soft tissue treatment was developed by a Chiropractor named P. Michael Leahy.


Acupuncture includes the Latin for needle (“acu”). It is a drug-free system of health and healing originating in China, but now practiced worldwide. Classically, fine sterile needles are inserted into pre-defined acupuncture points to create a therapeutic effect. In traditional Chinese terms, acupuncture affects “Chi” or the flow of energy, addressing excesses or deficiencies. Western concepts of acupuncture focus more on its affects on the nervous system and humoral (blood, including hormones and other endogenous compounds) system. It is used to address pain, anxiety, and many other conditions.


A binding together of two anatomical surfaces that are normally separate. It frequently occurs in muscle and connective tissue after trauma or with chronic tension.





Equine Massage

A specialised form of massage therapy developed to treat horses. Competitive riders and horse owners alike know the advantage of regular hands-on massage treatments that maximize the potential of their horses. Equine massage increases circulation, relieves tension, relaxes muscle spasms, enhances muscle tone and increases range of motion in high-performance horses.



This layer or sheet of connective tissue connects the various structures and organs of the body. There are two types of fascia: superficial, and deep. Some fascia is simple sheets, while others are complex and multi-layered.


There are no terms that begin with the letter “G”.




This polypeptide hormone secreted by the islet of Langerhans in the pancreas helps regulate blood glucose and its storage as glycogen, as well as the storage of fats as neutral lipids while promoting protein synthesis.

Intestinal Permeability

This term describes the control of material passing from inside the gastrointestinal tract through the cells lining the gut wall and into the rest of the body. The intestine normally exhibits some permeability, allowing nutrients to pass through the gut while maintaining a barrier function. This barrier keeps potentially harmful substances (such as antigens) from leaving the intestine and migrating to the rest of the body.


A dimension of personality primarily characterized by inhibition, particularly in social situations.

Islet of Langerhans

The irregular clusters of endocrine cells scattered throughout the pancreas that secrete insulin and glucagon.


There are no terms that begin with the letter “J”.


There are no terms that begin with the letter “K”.



Myofascial Release Therapy

This form of bodywork is manipulative in nature and seeks to rebalance the body by releasing tension in the fascia. Light touches and pulls are used in conjunction with long, stretching strokes to help release muscle tension in an area of the body.


There are no terms that begin with the letter “N”.


There are no terms that begin with the letter “O”.



There are no terms that begin with the letter “Q”.



The reflex points in the hands and feet are worked on to balance, revitalize and detoxify while reducing stress and increasing circulation.


The universal life force combines with the natural intelligence of the body and mind to protect and preserve your health and boost your wellbeing. It uses a light, nonintrusive touch.


A joint mobilisation technique in which a body part is moved rhythmically from side to side or back and forth; may accompany compression.


Soft Tissue Release (STR)

STR complements other techniques used during a massage session. It is administered by applying and maintaining pressure, or ‘locking’ into the relevant tissues while simultaneously stretching away aligning fibres.

Strain/Counter Strain

This set of techniques relieves musculoskeletal spasm and pain. A passive procedure, it places the body or limb into the position of greatest comfort. This process reduces or stops the inappropriate nervous system activity that maintains the muscle spasm. Normalisation of both muscle tone and joint function usually accompany the release or elimination of pain that result.



This technique is executed with the edge of the hand, cupped hands or fingers, using short, alternating taps to an area of the body.


There are no terms that begin with the letter “U”.


There are no terms that begin with the letter “V”.



A dynamic state of health in which a person strives for optimal body-mind functioning


There are no terms that begin with the letter “X”.


There are no terms that begin with the letter “Y”.


There are no terms that begin with the letter “Z”.


Performance Chiropractic Glossary of Terms | (757) 229-4161