Traction refers to the practice of slowly and gently pulling on a fractured or dislocated body part. It’s often done using ropes, pulleys, and weights. These tools help apply force to the tissues surrounding the damaged area. The purpose of traction is to guide the body part back into place and hold it steady. Traction may be used to: stabilize and realign bone fractures, such as a broken arm or leg, help reduce the pain of a fracture before surgery, treat bone deformities caused by certain conditions, such as scoliosis, correct stiff and constricted muscles, joints, tendons, or skin, stretch the neck and prevent painful muscle spasms, etc.