The Muscle Energy Technique (MET) is the name for the type of adjustments I use for my SI joints.
Learning to perform MET on myself was a major part of my recovery. Although chiropractic adjustments were technically putting my joints into the proper alignment, they were also putting too much stress on my SI joint ligaments, making it harder for them to heal.
Once a PT showed me how to use MET on myself to realign my own SI joints, it was like the final piece of the puzzle fell into place. I was able to stop going to the chiropractor, which meant my ligaments were better able to heal and my joints became a lot more stable.
How does MET work?
The Muscle Energy Technique involves using precise muscle contractions to move your joints into place. These contractions must be very gentle and controlled– it’s important to know exactly what you’re doing.
That’s why you should have a trained physical therapist or other professional show you exactly what to do, before you try them on your own.
The purpose of my sharing information about the Muscle Energy Technique is not to encourage you to immediately go and try things out on your own. Instead, my goal is to give you an idea of what I personally found helpful, so you have a sense of the treatment options that are out there.
MET is a tough concept to summarize, especially when it’s really something that should be taught in person. However, my goal here to get you started, so you know what you’re looking for.
How exactly does the Muscle Energy Technique work? My first attempt at explaining how these muscle contractions work, and the patterns you’d be using MET to correct.
Clarifying the MET, in response to some questions from a reader.
And here is a great video I found, which shows someone demonstrating the same MET concepts that I use. I recommend that you also check out this post I wrote, where I explain in more detail what’s going on.
What exactly is manual therapy? A post I wrote; MET is one type of this larger type of therapy.
The Key Points of my Recovery series shows you how learning to perform MET on myself fits into my overall path toward healing.
Articles on MET:
The links below are written in more technical terms, and are aimed at medical professionals. However, I believe that we as patients stand to benefit from educating ourselves as much as possible, so I am including these for you as well:
History of the Muscle Energy Technique— from Leon Chaitow ND, DO
Short-Term Effect of Muscle Energy Technique on Pain in Individuals with Non-Specific Lumbopelvic Pain: A Pilot Study. Peer-reviewed study from the Journal of Manual and Manipulative Therapy that demonstrated a benefit to MET for lumbopelvic pain.