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Sat, Oct 21


Columbus, WI

OT Level 1: Introduction to Dry Needling for the UPPER EXTREMITY Only - ONE DAY

Progress your skills with the application of Dry Needling treatment for muscles of the upper extremity. This ONE DAY course will introduce providers (Occupational Therapist's, Hand Specialists, Physical Therapists, Athletic Trainers, Physicians etc) who treat predominately only the UPPER Extremity.

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OT Level 1: Introduction to Dry Needling for the  UPPER EXTREMITY Only - ONE DAY
OT Level 1: Introduction to Dry Needling for the  UPPER EXTREMITY Only - ONE DAY

Time & Location

Oct 21, 2023, 8:00 AM – 5:30 PM

Columbus, WI, 1515 Park Ave, Columbus, WI 53925, USA


About the event


Emerging evidence continues to support the utilization of dry needling techniques in improving pain and function in patients with a variety of diagnoses. In this course we will discuss and demonstrate various methods in how to use a needle as an extension of a practitioner’s hands in facilitating the reduction of pain and dysfunction in patients with general neuro-musculoskeletal disorders. Instruction focuses first on recognizing the different theoretical paradigms behind the use of a dry needle complimented with the clinical reasoning and decision making behind how to safely and effectively use the needle within your patient care. Using a multi-modal approach to patient care, participants will be able to integrate the use of dry needling into their current practice patterns immediately following this course.


This course is delivered in a lecture and lab-based format, combining pre-course readings, viewings and on-site learning experiences to facilitate participant learning. Pre-course readings and viewings are provided to participants 14 days in advance of an intensive on-site laboratory training session.  Pre-course readings will include a post assessment evaluation prior to onsite training to ensure universal basic knowledge of safe and effective techniques. On-site objectives will reinforce pre-course materials and investigate the therapeutic effects, mechanisms, safety and legal issues involved with dry needling.  A 1-day onsite lab intensive schedule is designed to satisfy the training requirements of most state practice acts (Participants are responsible for knowing their practice act requirements).  Our course format focuses first in understanding safe utilization of the needle complimented next by building clinician confidence in appropriately applying the needle into practice.  All participants will receive hands-on demonstration and practice of selected DN techniques. Discussion will include the integration of DN techniques into an overall treatment regimen that includes the use of manual interventions (manual and optional tool assisted soft tissue mobilization, joint mobilization/manipulation, and manual stretching) and exercise.  The course will have a student to faculty ratio of no greater than 12:1. An on-site skill assessment is used to reinforce course objectives and assess skill acquisition/competency.

Hybrid Level 1 Course Schedule: 

Prior to Course (Est completion time of 3 hours):

-Complete Pre-Reading and Presentation Assignments provided on Moodle Learning Platform

-Complete Online Quiz at least 24 hours in advance of onsite course

      - Participants must achieve >80% to be able to attend Live Course instruction.

Day 1 (9  hours)

7:30- Registration

8:00-Orientation;   Introductions; Course Expectations

8:30-Safe   Needling Procedures and technique variations


10:00-Examination   and Anatomy review of the Shoulder / Upper Arm

11:00-DN for   Shoulder / Upper Arm (Deltoid, Biceps, Triceps)


12:30-Case   Discussion

1:00-Round   Robin (Patient Education / Application)

1:30-Examination   and Anatomy review of the Shoulder Girdle

1:45-DN for   the Shoulder Girdle (UT, Lat, TM)

2:45-Examination   and Anatomy review of the Forearm / Hand

3:15-DN for Forearm   /Hand (Brachoradialis, ED, ECR/U, FD. FCU/R, Adductor Pollicus)

4:15-Estim   Demonstration for UE

4:30-Round   Robin

5:30-Course   Adjourn


12 contact hours (9 hours for 1-day onsite lecture/laboratory session)

Prerequisites: None


Upon completing this course, you'll be able to:

1. Discuss the ability and appropriateness of physical and occupational therapists in providing trigger point dry needling to patients with musculoskeletal disorders. Review the APTA, AAOMPT, and state board position statements regarding this intervention.

2. Review and define the concept of trigger points and their contribution to myofascial pain syndromes.

3. Compare and contrast the differences in acupuncture and dry needling in terms of eastern vs. western treatment philosophies, needling technique, and goals of intervention.

4. Discuss the evidence surrounding the proposed mechanisms of action, treatment effectiveness, and relative safety for DN.

5. Perform and develop proficiency/competency in using safe and appropriate application of DN.

6. Demonstrate the appropriate integration of DN into a comprehensive treatment plan for patients with lower/upper extremity dysfunction that may include joint mobilization/manipulation, manual and tool assisted soft tissue mobilization, manual stretching, and therapeutic exercise.

7. Demonstrate appropriate safety precautions and articulate legal issues regarding DN.

Instructor Biography:

Dr. Josh Bruner, PT, DPT, OCS, CSCS is currently a board certified Orthopedic Clinical Specialist and holds a certification as a Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS). He’s a full-time physical therapist at The Orthopedic Institute at Southwest Health in Platteville, WI. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin – La Crosse’s Doctor of Physical Therapy program in 2014 and completed an orthopedic residency with Specialized Physical Therapy Education (SPTE) in 2017. Since completing the residency training, Dr. Bruner has been a clinical mentor for the program as well as a guest lecturer for a Physical Therapy Assistant and Physical  Therapy programs. He’s also been an instructor for several continuing education courses varying from dry needling to the management of various therapy disorders. Outside of the residency program, he has received additional training in analyzing and treating movement impairments as a certified performance specialist and implementing sports performance programs for high school and collegiate athletes. Prior to the physical therapy profession, Dr. Bruner spent time working as a strength and conditioning coach for Auburn University’s football program.


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