Manual or manipulative therapy is a continuum of skilled movements of either joints, muscles or nerves. The effects are widespread.
In the area treated healthy movement and function is restored. Other research-proven effects include brain-produced endorphins, which can put a lid on pain and increased muscle reactions. Essentially a treatment of the whole person. This kind of treatment is done by the physiotherapist and can include manipulation. In some cases manual therapy techniques can be taught to you for your self treatment.