Courses

I recently had another great oppurtonity to teach Pelvis Restoration at the home of the Postural Restoration Institute. This was the third Live Stream course that I have instructed and it was truly one of the best! I had a smaller live group of 6 on site attendees and over 20 Live Zoom participatents. I did my best to stay focused on the introductory concepts, tests and treatments for pateints suffering from Pelvis related dysfunctions. I enjoyed the discussions regarding patterns, positions and PRI as it relates to frontal plane control of the Pelvis. I really enjoy discussing Pelvis Respiration as it can benefit so many patients and give PRI therapists a greater understanding of how the thorax, inlet and outlets all integrate to stabilize our pateints. Thanks to RJ for being my Mystro this weekend. He always takes good care of me and our students.

Posted May 12, 2022 at 1:56PM
Categories: Courses Science

The clinicians of Lancaster General Hospital are pros at hosting PRI courses. Last weekend’s Postural Respiration course was their seventh. This instructor had moments of déjà vu, since LGH was the location of the first PRI course I attended, back in 2007. Two participants, Deborah Schrodi, PT, and Cathy Ingram, PT, were also in attendance at that very course 15 years ago! The surrounding Amish community, who eschew automation, provided an interesting contrast to our modern way of life and its epidemics of myopia, asthma, and loss of movement variability. These modern ills can be traced, by-and-large, to technological “advancements”.   

Underscoring the Institute’s interdisciplinary mindset, the class was comprised of a mix of clinicians, including physical therapists, physical therapy assistants, athletic trainers, massage therapists, and personal trainers. Many were new to the science, while others had multiple PRI courses under their belt.

 

The Institute continually works to update course material, adding research articles and patient photos and videos to illustrate and support course concepts. Our left and right hemi-diaphragms are different in size and have differences in abdominal support.  This “static asymmetry” creates a teeter-totter effect within our body, keeping us reflexively alive and providing a starting point from which to move. When this teeter-totter situation reaches a tipping point, we have only a “totter”. The right side remains pinned-down, grounded, and compressed. The left side is held aloft, remaining ungrounded and decompressed. We cannot thrive in this state.

   

Our patterned, maladaptive hemi-diaphragm position and activity has consequences on movement, physiology, and behavior. Humans require oscillating compression and decompression of our lungs and rib cage to provide movement and ensure the health of our tissues, most notably the nervous system. An outward sign of this lack of oscillation is breathing pattern dysfunction, such as belly breathing, chest wall elevation, and superior T4 syndrome, the underpinnings of many of the syndromes that we treat.

Postural Respiration is a lab-heavy, hands-on course, better taken live, if possible. Participants came away proficient in performing and interpreting PRI’s objective tests to identify overactive left IAC, right BC, and B PEC chains of muscles and the pesky superior T4 syndrome. These patterns need to be inhibited so that we can efficiently and effectively inhabit the environment around us, without deleterious effects on our neuromusculoskeletal system.

A huge shout out to Frank Mallon, DPT, PRC, owner of Renaissance Physical Therapy in near-by Philly. Your expertise and instruction on the nuances of the Institute’s non-manual and manual techniques was invaluable!

     

Thank you to all who asked questions and provided clinical comments, keeping the energy level high. Thank you to our models, who enhanced the learning experience: Kirsten Ditzler, DPT; Kelly Faller, PTA; Eileen Herman, PT; Isha Mody, PT; Joesph Newton-Pretko, DPT; Kyle Price, PT; Lori Shearer, PTA and Michael Polejav, PT who all helped facilitate our learning.

Thank you to the LGH clinicians for your efforts in set-up and clean-up. I appreciated the opportunity to present this material at the place where my PRI journey started.

Posted May 5, 2022 at 9:06PM
Categories: Clinicians Courses Science

The pacific northwest has been a PRI hot bed for several years. The enthusiasm for the science and clinical application of PRI is palpable. It was my honor to have the opportunity to teach a fantastic group of movement professionals in Seattle. We had five PRC's in attendance for this newly updated I&I course.  

This course is the perfect gateway to several PRI courses, including Cranial Resolution, Forward Locomotor Movement, and the Primary Non-manual Techniques Workshop. Our conversation starts with introducing the neurological learning process that the body needs in order to inhibit patterned behavior: alternating compression and decompression. This important concept is the foundation we build from as we progressed from the calcaneus to the femur and pelvis and into the scapula.

 

Founded in the concept of alternating compression, we were able to delve into medial and lateral hamstring relationships, as well as when and how to apply the right serratus anterior and subscapularis into a program. Along the way, the necessity of compression of talar bone and calcaneus, and management of pelvic inlets and outlets provide the necessary sense the body needs to allow the body the freedom it desires above T8.

I cannot thank the staff from Alpine Physical Therapy enough. Jeremiah Ferguson, DPT, PRC, Christopher Murphy, DPT, PRC, and Eva Bilo, DPT, were the perfect hosts. A huge shout out to their friend who was kind enough to loan us his projector for the weekend. It would have been a very different course without his generosity. My sincere thanks to the Alpine crew for all of their help.

We were fortunate to have a great mixture of seasoned PRI veterans as well as several who are relatively new to PRI. My thanks to Trevor Corrado, Jeff Fjelstul, David Shamash, and Katie Schaner for their willingness to ask questions.  In addition to the Alpine staff, it was wonderful to have Erin Coomer, Zach Hawthorne, Wren McLaughlin, and Betsy Baker-Bold contribute their experience and perspective to the audience. It was helpful to have others in the audience provide their clinical validation to the topics of I&I.

Many thanks for a wonderful experience in a truly gorgeous region of the country!

Posted April 13, 2022 at 4:09PM
Categories: Courses Clinicians Science

Pro-Active Physical Therapy in beautiful Fort Collins, CO hosted Cervical Revolution this past weekend. This was a unique gathering of not only first timers to Cervical Revolution but seasoned veterans of PRI including a total of four faculty members and four PRC/PRT's. Included in the group was a local dentist, Dr. Behar Esmaili, who brought an enthusiastic perspective on how occlusion affects the entire physiologic and postural system. The subject of a stomatognathic consideration to the cervical, cranial and occlusal system with the cervical spine as the primary driver of the system was reinforced this weekend.

Postural Restoration is an interdisciplinary institute and that was reflected in the backgrounds of the attendees. Cervical Revolution bridges a gap, as does PRI, with many professions with respiration sacred to physical therapists, the atlas/spine with chiropractors, the cranium with osteopaths and occlusion with dentists. Mix in ATC's and fitness professionals for performance and this course, as well as every other PRI course, has a wide appeal and utilization for many health care disciplines.

Having four faculty members in attendance is rare unless a course is given in Lincoln and the energy with vast clinical expertise of Louise Kelley, DPT, Jason Miller, DPT and Craig Deperschmidt, DPT was appreciated by all. Louise Kelley, DPT will soon be ready to teach Cervical Revolution and her ability to describe testing and non-manual techniques, especially the Standing Stomatognathic Squat, was a "bonus" contribution to the weekend and was also greatly appreciated. The discussion of the A/O articulation being highly neurologic/autonomic went from a theoretical consideration in opening remarks to real lab experience when several "extension driven" students, with PRI Cervical repositioning non-manual techniques, got to experience first hand what neutral feels like. Thanks to all of the Pro-Active Staff for hosting this past weekend and this entire group of professionals that took time out of their schedules to "revolve" with us!

Where Would We Be Without Interference? Our Recovery Depends On It.

After talking about the molars influence on “grounded” movement and the canines influence on “guided” exploration, I become more mindful about the direction, both the Institute and these teeth have always had on the influence of “posture”. Our recovery of food going down the wrong “pipe”, our recovery of losing our balance when slipping on a rug, our recovery of mis-pronouncing when using familiar vernacular, our recovery of our visual focus when we misjudge objects in the distance, our recovery of our anti-gravitational unilateral abdominals, hamstrings, and triceps, our recovery of our breath......etc. all require a sense of ourselves, our interoception, our ‘centric’ presence, that is given to us through occlusal and podal interference.   

I have evolved my life around these human grounded and un-grounded concepts of reference and restraint guidance. And I am only hopeful, as illusory as the concepts, research and corollaries that were provided in this very highly integrated course on teeth and feet are and can be, that health care providers will appreciate how to “recover” better through the integration of the ‘floors’ the maxillae, and the ‘floors’ the feet depend on for postural balance. I am enlivened for those dentists and movement specialists who decide to immerse themselves into the world of recovery, by addressing how to put the neck to rest, through pterygoid, palatine, and plane alternation. The resonance of recovery is the most grounded state one can accomplish. Simply because the action, the guidance, and sense of limitation, which is what the sense of interference provides, protects and relaxes our necks and essentially, us.

If after reading this, you become more curious about our need for balance built off of interferences, please consider taking this course, offered on October 14th and the 15th, or consider attending this year’s Spring Symposium on “The Stomatognathic System: An Interdisciplinary Approach In The Management of Spatial Navigation and Structural Strength” on April 22nd and the 23rd.

Melissa Truska, thank you for balancing me out those two days. With you on my left and Jen Platt on my right, I felt so grounded and supported, as a presenter in front of a screen of so many I truly wanted to personally interact with, individually. There were countless questions, that were answered by Jen Platt. I appreciate her so much. Her talent and historical presence in this Institute allows me to do what I appreciate doing. And that is presenting material that has foundation, regardless of how familiar one is with that foundation of science. PRI applications and techniques, are built off of and around my beliefs, practice and principles. And Jen and her staff keep me, the faculty and all of us grounded, secured and consistent, in a world full of confusion and mis-interference.

Posted April 1, 2022 at 2:12PM
Categories: Clinicians Courses Science

I had a wonderful time teaching Pelvis Restoration in Bradenton Florida!  Thank you IMG Academy for hosting , Megan for being my lab assistant, and the course attendees for learning with me for the weekend.  

As always, we went into detail of the pelvis position anteriorly and posteriorly and left and right in the pelvis inlet and outlet.  How this position influences compression and decompression of the pelvic inlet and outlet and how the respiratory and pelvic diaphragms assist in treating the L AIC and PEC patterns to allow for lateralization to the left and right.  The course attendees stated that understanding PRI objective tests to assist with inhibition/facilitation of the L AIC and PEC polyarticular chain of muscles to assist with treatment to restore reciprocal and alternating movement was helpful.

It was a great class with great energy!  Thank you for spending your weekend with me.

Posted March 29, 2022 at 8:03PM
Categories: Courses Science

Without a doubt, the opportunity to present the science of PRI to a live group of movement professionals was a great sign to me that we are getting closer and closer to the resumption of our previous "normal" lives. I had never had the pleasure of speaking in Massachusetts previously, and it was a wonderful experience. The newly updated Impingement and Instability course provides a neuromechanical explanation of the "why" behind many PRI concepts and how to apply the science to a variety of conditions and patient populations.

We were able to link the scapula to the calcaneus, femur, and pelvis, so by the time we got to scapular instability, we have the freedom to discuss other avenues of treatment and concepts that we previously were unable to discuss. This is the course we have the opportunity to dive into the concept of talar wobble, balancing hamstring activity, and the pressure sensitivity of the scapula.

Our exploration into the value of pressure management and how pressure is the "Morse Code" of postural and body awareness, as well as how the body learns to make changes to movement strategies was lengthy. This course provides the opportunity to go down some rabbit holes that we ordinarily are unable to proceed into in other courses.   

My thanks to the entire Train Boston crew for a great venue and very welcoming experience. It was an honor to have three certified individuals attend the course: Mike Mullins, Donna Behr, and Phil DeNigris. It was wonderful for me to have your questions and feedback, and those who were newer to PRI appreciated it as well. Thank you for a wonderful weekend and getting back to "normal."

Posted March 28, 2022 at 8:57PM
Categories: Courses Science

I had a great time this weekend in Lincoln NE, at the Postural Restoration Insitute. I had the pleasure of teaching Myokinematics of the HIp and Pelvis to 12 in person and 55 live stream attendees. The Institute continues to grow and it was my pleasure mentoring both Jason Miller and Craig Depperschmidt. They were not only my lab assistants for the weekend, but they both jumped right in to help me teach the Sunday afternoon clinical application of both facilitation and inhibition non manual techniques.


I really enjoy teaching and helping both new and seasoned PRI clinicians along their PRI journeys. We had some great discussions on the differences between orientation (uncompensated) and compensations that are commonly seen at the FA joint when a pelvis gets positioned in a L AIC pattern. No two courses in PRI are taught the same and this course was no different. I had the privilege of sharing my 20 years of PRI clinical experience and 11 years of teaching with this weekend's course attendees. We had fun using some of my favorite musicians references Lady Gaga (born this way), Beyonce (to the left) and new to 2022 Dua Lipa (Levitate)! Go get those 5/5 HADLT and see those patients levitate off the table! Cheers until we meet again PRInation! Thanks to Kevin Fay for giving me yet another musical reference from Idina Menzel (let it go) to help us all remember how important inhibition is early in a program!

Posted February 23, 2022 at 4:53PM
Categories: Clinicians Courses Science

One Thing in Life You Do Not Want To Lose

There are so many things in life that need to be dropped off, like primitive reflexes, baby teeth, and excessive weight. But the one thing you don’t want to lose is your natural, neutral position of your upright neck.  Our upright cervical lordosis of 30 degrees, plus or minus a few degrees, reduces our masticatory stress, subglottal stenosis, head and cervical lateral displacement, as well as our development of open bites, mouth breathing, elevated hyoid malposition, and lowered glossal function. Therefore, you, me and humans in general, do not want to lose the capability of positioning and placing ourselves around a centrally located, cervical spine that has the ability to laterally flex each direction, from an appropriate, normal cervical aligned state, associated with 30 degrees of lordotic curvature. Our livelihood depends on this ability to keep, use and alternate our behavior from this homeostatic state.

Therefore, this is one thing in life I do not want to lose.

This course gives you, the speaker and your patients the opportunity to develop skills and sense on how to keep it.  And with the help of Skip George DC,PRC and Louise Kelley DPT, PRC we reinforced the way to assess, intervene and keep normal, neutral, natural cervical lordosis. Its like the clean air we breathe, the clear water we drink, the natural, non-preservative based food we eat, the honest, good people we interact with and the naturopathic sleep we desire. It is health. It is the best 30 degrees of preventative medicine there is. Skip and Louise, live their life around these concepts and are living examples of what it takes to keep it. Their presentation on how to revolve around a neck and function with a neck that has been re-positioned, will enlighten you. I am sure, one thing they will not lose in their life, is their neutral, natural cervical lordosis. They have been incorporating neuro-mechanics that evolved around 30 degrees of cervical lordosis, their entire life.

Posted February 1, 2022 at 10:46PM
Categories: Courses Science

The Impingement and Instability course was the kick-off for PRI in 2022, and I was fortunate to be able to have several friends and colleagues in the audience. With this course being updated only two years ago, it has a decided different feel compared to the previous iterations. We were fortunate to have nearly 50 attendees via Zoom from 10 different countries, and 8 movement professionals in-person. With so much PRI experience "in the room", both in-person and virtual, we were afforded the luxury of delving into the neurology of PRI.  

Our ability to make substantial and long-standing change to our posture is dependent upon our ability to change how our brain perceives the environment and gravity.  This course explains how that occurs and why reference centers are a better "road map" for us to be able to modify our patterns and habits.  Starting at the calcaneus and talus, we discussed integration of the femur and why we need it to be unstable, which lead us to the pelvis and why pelvic inlets and outlets are linked to the calcaneus.  We were able to spend nearly 4 hours on linking the scapula and underlying thorax to the pelvis and femur and calcaneus.  Our ability to compress and decompress several different "floors" on each side allows our body to make sense of this Morse Code-like alternation for improved posture, patterns, and respiration.  

My thanks to the entire crew from Edge Physical Therapy: Beth, Mike, Brett, and Eric. Thank you for your questions and dialogue. And thank you to Meg and allowing us to learn from your experience of what it finally means to feel the floor under your feet.  And thanks to Lori Thompson and taking the time to go through the Shoe List.  That was a perfect conversation at the part of the course, and I truly hope those in attendance understand just how unique that experience was for all of us.  Thanks to all of those who attended, and here's to a wonderful 2022!

Posted January 20, 2022 at 11:04PM
Categories: Courses Clinicians Science
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