The body’s overall goal is to achieve and maintain homeostasis. When imbalances exist this state is disrupted in the body and negative health outcomes may follow as a result. The field of Chiropractic seeks to eradicate these imbalances and bring the body to a state of homeostasis once again. This homeostatic state will set the body up for success in treating and healing itself, within reason.
These imbalances are most often associated with what is known in Chiropractic as subluxations. One major philosophy is that subluxations are abnormalities of the spine, generally when vertebrae are out of alignment. These misalignments can occur as a result of physical, emotional, or mental trauma as the body attempts to process activities of daily living. This is especially true for physical traumas the body may face such as vehicle accidents, childbirth, or work related injuries. As these subluxations occur the body will often times attempt to bring itself back into homeostasis by compensating in other areas. However, this generally creates a snowball effect of imbalances that need to be addressed.
Since its beginning in 1895, the profession of Chiropractic has been correcting these subluxations in the body to allow for balance and proper flow of cerebral spinal fluid and energy through the body. When these elements are unrestricted the body is more apt to healing. As a result of years of practice and research the field has developed several methods of adjustments to correct specific subluxations in the body. One of those chiropractic techniques is the Thompson Technique.
The Thompson Technique is named after its founder, Dr. J. Clay Thompson who established the technique in 1955. This technique requires the use of a special table referred to as a “segmental drop table.” The table works with the chiropractor in their adjustment process by augmenting the force being applied to the joint.
One of the most notable characteristics of this technique is the use of determining disparities in the length of a patient’s leg with he or she is lying on the table. This process is referred to as the Derifield-Thompson leg check, named after Dr. Romer Derifield and Thompson. The method was adapted from Dr. Derifield’s original leg check.
When the patient flexes their feet the practitioner is able to detect any neurological imbalances that may be present as they manifest in one leg being longer than the other. This process helps the chiropractor in determining the specific nature of the adjustment that the body needs. The leg check allows the practitioner to better understand what portion of the spine is involved as well whether it is the thoracic, lumbar, pelvic, or cervical spine.
During the adjustment phase of the session the patient will recline on the segmental drop table. The chiropractor will then apply a thrust using high speed and minimal force. The table will then slightly “drop” to the next spinal region that needs to be adjusted. This table allows the chiropractor to apply less force than would be need if the table were not used. This gives assurance to some patients that do not feel comfortable with traditional adjustment techniques and speed.
The drop table is an indispensable part of the Thompson Technique. It ensures that the patient will not be over adjusted and that protects the chiropractor for longevity purposes. These practitioners are able to apply low force and high velocity without overworking themselves which may lead to burnout and fatigue.
Overall, the goal of the Thompson Technique is to provide improved posture, flexibility, strength, and even performance for the patient. The body will also become more resistant to injury in the area where the adjustment has taken place.
Since its introduction to the field in 1955, the Thompson Technique has evolved and is now a way to provide a full spine adjustment to patients. Clients have sought this method of adjustment for a variety of health related reasons. For patients simply wanting a quick and easy adjustment to those needing corrections to subluxations causing serious issues, the Thompson Technique is appropriate for either. Patients should seek out treatment with this method by a trained practitioner who uses the appropriate tools and process steps during their session.