We’ve all been there. In the middle of a yoga class when the instructor cues a pose, and as we move toward it we notice a joint crack or pop. It may feel a bit unusual, and leave you wondering whether joints cracking is something to be concerned about. Unless you experience pain or swelling around the joints that “cracked,” you actually have no reason to worry, and you can rest assured that this is incredibly common.
If you’re like us, though, you may have wondered what really causes joints to crack. There are plenty of myths around potential causes as well as consequences, and we thought it was finally time to put them to rest. We did a little research, and here’s what we discovered.
Joint cracking is typically caused by one of two things. Air bubbles can form in the space between joints, and when the body moves in certain ways, can collapse. The other explanation is that movement can cause bones and other connective tissue to come in contact, and when they do, a sound is created. These noises are harmless and have no connection to whether or not one develops arthritis, which is a common misbelief. If you’re experiencing pain, see your health care professional. Otherwise, you can keep on crackin’.