Osteopathic Manipulative Therapy Benefits & Uses for Pain, Insomnia + More

What Is Osteopathic Manipulative Therapy?

Here are answers to some of the most common questions regarding osteopathic manipulative therapy (OMT):

What is manipulation therapy?


Manipulative therapy is a type of natural “manual medicine.” One definition of osteopathic manual medicine, according to the Des Moines University’s Iowa Academy of Osteopathy, is “a non-invasive, hands-on therapy used to diagnose, treat and even prevent illness or injury.” (2)


Two of the leading alternative health care systems practiced in the U.S. and elsewhere today are osteopathy and chiropractic care, which are closely related considering both depend on manual adjustments. It’s also for common for many physical therapists to practice certain osteopathic manipulations with their clients, such as active release technique or myofascial release.


Osteopathic physicians commonly receive training in OMM as an additional offering, providing patients with a range of treatment options and recommendations. Many doctors who perform manipulative therapy techniques are trained in other fields of medicine too, including in specialty areas such as chiropractic adjustments, massage therapy, acupressure and sometimes nutrition.