This past weekend was the first Functional Dry Needling certification course in China! The course was given by Physical Therapists Edo Zylstra and Jeremy Snyder from Kinetacore. The 3-day Level 1 Training course generally targets experienced medial practitioners who have no needling experience. However, this particular course was interesting in that many of the Chinese participants had prior experience with acupuncture needling, but not functional dry needling. This requires a shift in the framework of your treatment choices from meridians and accupoints to musculoskeletal structures and myotomes. Being my first continuing education experience outside of the United States, it was also interesting to see the contrast in learning styles from east to west.
If you’re not familiar with dry needling, Gray Cook does a great job explaining how it compares with acupuncture during this podcast. Basically dry needling is a type of muscle reset – just as foam rolling, trigger point release, and instrumented soft tissue technique are all types of muscle reset that fit within the framework of the Functional Movement System. However what has been found through research and experience (both as a provider and a patient), is that dry needling can achieve a muscle reset more effectively and far quicker than other methods.
I want to stress that dry needling is just one tool in a physical therapist’s toolbox. Where it fits in varies from case to case; however, as with any other reset technique, it is generally most effective when followed by corrective exercise in the FMS framework. If you want to learn more about getting trained in dry needling, information on the Kinetacore website can be found here. Then hopefully you will find, as I have, that test-retesting results will reflect how powerful this tool is when incorporated appropriately as a reset technique. Looking forward to sharing some of the literature on here soon.