Yes, the Y-Strap adjustment is safe as long as it is performed by a trained chiropractor. In fact, it is arguably safer than other types of manual adjustments because there is no rotation or torque to the spine. Without rotation, the vasculature and ligaments of the spine are protected from over-elongation and damage.
The Y-Strap has become quite famous on social media platforms recently, especially YouTube. However, this traction-decompression adjustment has been around in the chiropractic profession long before social media even existed!
Previously, chiropractors would use towels and/or their hands to perform such an adjustment. The Y-Strap device has helped to popularize decompression adjustments as well as make manual traction more comfortable for the patient.
Spinal traction has been proven to have an incredibly positive effect on the human body. It helps to relax muscles, align the spine, and open the intervertebral foramina (IVF).
The Y-Strap works by stretching the spine pulling the head in the Y-axis of the body causing decompression in the vertebral discs. The HVLA adjustment generates a swift decompression within the vertebrae discs that generates vacuum that enables nutrients to flow into the discs.
The question can only be answered on a case-by-case basis. Depending on the patient’s weight and spinal health, the chiropractor will determine how much force to use when performing the Y-Strap adjustment. For this reason, it is crucial that the Y-axis manipulation is only executed by trained chiropractor.
The Y-Strap can be used in two different ways.
1. The first way is for stretching purposes with slow and smooth stretching decompression.
2. The second way is by applying a HVLA (High Velocity, Low Amplitude) thrust along the y-axis of the body. This is when the Y-Strap is used to apply a chiropractic adjustment. This HVLA is the procedure used in many of the popular chiropractic videos on YouTube.