Active Range of Motion

Active Range of Motion is performed with the patient in a seated position. The examiner observes the patient’s willingness to perform the movement and differences in range of motion. Painful movements should be done last. During active movements the examiner looks for limitation of movement and possible causes for pain, stiffness, spasm or blocking.

As the patient reaches full range of active movements, passive overpressure may be applied very carefully in order to test the end feel as well as to differentiate between physiological (active) end range and anatomical (passive) end range (Magee 2007).

  • Flexion: 80 – 90 degrees
  • Extension: 70 degrees
  • Lateral flexion: 20 – 45 degrees
  • Rotation: 70 – 90 degrees



Active ROM with overpressure

Patient history
Passive range of motion
Resisted isometric movements
Neurological testing