Bones, Joints & Muscles - Hypermobility



What is Hypermobility?

Children and adults with joint hypermobility are often referred to a ‘double jointed. People with hypermobility have very mobile (supple) joints, they are able to move their limbs into positions others find impossible.

Should I be concerned about hypermobility?

Many children with hypermobility don't have any problems. It can be an advantage, for ballet dancers, gymnasts and musicians who may from the increased flexibility. However joint hypermobility can have unpleasant symptoms such as:

  • Pain in the joints and muscles
  • Clicking joints
  • Joints that dislocate (come out of the correct position) easily
  • Fatigue (extreme tiredness)
  • Recurrent injuries, eg sprains
  • Dizziness and fainting
  • Thin or stretchy skin

If a child has hypermobility with multiple symptoms such as these, they may have joint hypermobility syndrome (JHS). We recommend arranging an appointment with your GP.

Hypermobility may be seen alongside other conditions including:

Can Physiotherapy help?

The increased mobility of the joints cannot be changed with physiotherapy, but depending on the outcome if an assessment, physiotherapy can help with:

  • Specific graded strengthening exercises to provide additional support to weak joints
  • Exercises and activities to improve core muscle strength
  • Exercises to stretch any tight muscles
  • Postural advice
  • Pain relief
  • Specific injury (eg sprain) treatment
  • Stamina and cardiovascular exercises and activities
  • Activities to improve sense of body position and movement (proprioception)
  • Advice on appropriate activities, including PE and games lessons
  • Monitoring and onward referral if indicated

If you have any concerns about the way your child’s joints, contact your GP or a Paediatric Physiotherapist. Kidsphysio physiotherapists will be able to provide reassurance, home advice, treatment, monitoring or onward referral depending on the outcome of a full assessment.