The clicking and the popping sound from a chiropractic adjustment is the release of air pressure in the joints.
If you were to look into the spine, you would find that we all have 25 movable spinal segments.
That explains what the clicking and popping sound from a chiropractic adjustment is.
Another question that we should address before this is: what joint are we cracking? If we adjust ourselves, what joint are we moving?
As a chiropractor myself, we have to feel whereabouts is the joint that is not moving correctly. That will be the one that is “hypomobile”. That means that the joint is not moving, not flexible. The one that we use to “self-crack” will be the joints that are already too flexible, or “hypermobile”.
When we look into a segment, if that joint is not moving correctly, the segments above and below will have a higher chance of being moved too much. The joint that is not moving properly will remain stiff and achy if it is building up inflammation, tension, and pressure at the back of the facet joint.
Coming back to the question, is self-cracking beneficial? Sometimes yes, if you were to be able to move the one that is not moving. However, most of the time, we might risk moving the one that is already too flexible, hence instability.