A review of the Activator Methods chiropractic technique (AMCT) and Activator adjusting instrument (AAI) is presented. History and development of the technique and its evidence basis and safety issues are discussed.


Activator history and associated body of research literature on both the technique and the instrument are critically reviewed. Included are basic science research in biomechanics, neurophysiology, and clinical research in AMCT analysis reliability, case studies, prospective cohorts, randomized group clinical outcomes, and comparisons to hands-only treatments.


AMCT and the AAI represent a system and mode of delivery based on rational and empirical evidence that continues to be informed by an active and growing body of clinical research. In comparison to other techniques, AMCT appears equivalent to various hands-on approaches, but with less physical demand on the doctor of chiropractic. As with all spinal manipulative and other therapies, risks of adverse effects exist, but appear to be minimized due to force and velocity characteristics of the AAI. Needs for future research directions are also discussed.

Top Clin Chiropr 2002; 9(3): 30–43.

Author information: Fuhr AW, Menke MM. Activator Methods International, Phoenix, AZ, USA.


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