DN1: Dry Needling of the Lumbar Region & Lower Quarter – A Comprehensive Approach


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This course focuses on skill acquisition of dry needling technique including clinical reasoning for implementing the intervention in the lower quarter. Participants can expect to be proficient with palpation of soft tissues structures, assessment, and treatment using dry needling. Safety, anatomy, skill, and indications with dry needling are emphasized with each technique. Learning is enhanced with the practical application of patient cases. This course will provide educational information to prepare the clinician to be an educator in the skill of dry needling to both patients and referral sources. Furthermore, the most up-to-date evidence informed approaches for the use of dry needling will be discussed and utilized during this course.

Target Audience: PTs
Instructional Level: Intermediate


CEU Approval Information

For individual state approval, please contact us

28 Hour Course

31 CCUs awarded through ProCert

Cancellation policy

SKU: N/A Category:

Course Rationale

The use of dry needling as an intervention has become increasingly utilized and accepted as a part of clinical practice by the APTA and AAOMPT. Furthermore, state practice acts are including the technique as a part of practice. Dry needling can be an effective adjunct intervention option for musculoskeletal dysfunctions. While evidence is limited pertaining to the technique, emerging evidence is supportive and will be explored in depth during this course. Course Logistics: lab will be three full days, Friday to Sunday.

Course Objectives

  • Provide a history of dry needling and put into context recent growth in the use of dry needling
  • Review and discuss the APTA, AAOMPT and state board position statements
  • Compare and contrast the differences between acupuncture and dry needling
  • Discuss dry needling mechanisms including trigger point theory
  • Compare and contrast active and latent trigger points
  • Discuss risks and adverse events associated with dry needling and how to minimize these events
  • Detect which patients are best suited for dry needling interventions
  • Discuss the use of dry needling by physical therapists to patients with musculoskeletal disorders.
  • Proficiently and competently identify tender points in muscles instructed in the course by using effective palpation techniques
  • Identify and discuss OSHA’s Blood Borne Pathogen Standards
  • Proficiently and competently handle a needle from initial preparation to discarding
  • Demonstrate clean needle technique
  • Proficiently and competently perform safe and appropriate dry needling on muscles of the lower quarter
  • Provide the appropriate integration of dry needling as part of a comprehensive treatment program for patients with lower quarter dysfunction including the use of other interventions
  • Articulate legal and ethical issues related to dry needling


Please note that individual courses may have a different start time on day 1 due to clinic hours at host site, for confirmation of time line please contact us directly.

Friday Agenda

Time Topic
7:00-7:30 Breakfast
7:30-8:00 Introductions, course outline, ground rules
8:00-9:00 History of dry needling, definition, scope of practice, mechanisms
9:00-9:15 Break
9:15-10:15 Risk, palpation, technique
10:15-11:15 OSHA Blood Borne Pathogen Standard, safe needling procedure, safe needling
11:15-12:00 Technique: Self Dry Needling
12:00-1:00 Lunch
1:00-2:00 Dry Needling for Anterior Thigh Muscles: VI, VL, VMO
2:00-3:00 Dry Needling for Anterior Thigh Muscles cont’d: RF, RFL
3:00-3:30 Thigh Muscles Skills Check
3:45-4:30 Dry Needling for Calf and Inner Thigh Muscles and Evidence Review: Gastroc, soleus, AM, Gracilis
4:30-5:00 Discussion 1. Dry Needling and scope of PT practice 2. Dry Needling effectiveness and safety
5:30-6:00 Skills Assessment for Posterior Thigh and Calf Muscle, Q&A


Saturday Agenda

Time Topic
7:00-7:30 Breakfast and welcome back
7:30-8:00 Round Robin
8:00-8:45 Dry needling for Buttock Muscles: PSIS, Gmax, Gmed
8:45-9:30 Dry needling for Buttock Muscles con’d: Gmin, Piriformis
9:30-9:45 Skills Assessment for Buttock Muscles
9:45-10:00 Break
10:00-10:15 Evidence Review: Hip Pain
10:15-11:15 Dry Needling Lumbar Muscles: Erector spinae
11:15-12:00 Round Robin
12:00-1:00 Lunch
1:00-2:00 Dry Needling Lumbar Muscles con’t: multifidi
2:00-2:30 Case Based Scenario
2:30-2:45 Break
2:45-3:45 Dry Needling Lower Leg Muscles and Evidence Review: TA, EDL
3:45-4:30 Dry Needling Lower Leg Muscles con’t: FL, TP
4:30-5:00 Skills Assessment Lumbar Muscles and Lower Leg Discussion 1. Communicating with referral sources/patients
5:30-6:00 Round Robin and Q&A


Sunday Agenda

Time Topic
7:00-7:30 Breakfast and welcome back
7:30-8:00 Round Robin
8:00-8:30 Discussion: Advanced Clinical Decisions
8:30-9:15 Billing and Documentation
9:15-9:45 MPS Evidence Review
9:45-10:00 Break
10:00-11:00 Dry Needling Lumbar Muscles: Foot/Small Muscles of the lower leg: FHL, FDL
11:00-12:00 Dry Needling Lumbar Muscles: Foot/Small Muscles of the lower leg: AH, QP, FDP
12:00-1:00 Lunch
1:00-2:00 Case Based Scenario
2:00-2:30 Skills Assessment: Foot/Small Muscles of the Lower Leg
2:30-3:15 Round Robin
3:15-3:30 Break
3:30-4:30 Directed Practice Lab
4:30-5:30 Round Robin
5:30-6:00 Wrap-Up: Q&A



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