Colonic motor abnormalities are implicated in several gastrointestinal disorders including constipation, irritable bowel syndrome and functional diarrhoea. Defining the colonic abnormalities is difficult and several novel techniques including, high-resolution fibre optic manometry, wireless motility capsules, ultrasound and magnetic resonance imaging have emerged to help in the diagnosis of these conditions. Coupled with the developing techniques are the novel treatments that look to restore normal colonic motility. These treatments include pharmacological agents (pharmabiotics, serotonin agonist, secretagogues) and medical devices (sacral nerve stimulation, transcutaneous electrical stimulation and biofeedback). This review summarizes the novel techniques used to record and define colonic motor abnormalities and the current status of the emerging treatments used to treat them.