Trigger Point Info


Trigger points, also known as myofascial trigger points, trigger sites, or muscle knots, are hyperirritable spots in skeletal muscle that are associated with palpable nodules in taut bands of muscle fibers.

The myofascial “knots” are an identifiable source of pain and dysfunction among physical therapists and osteopaths. The concept of trigger points provides a framework which may be used to help address certain musculoskeletal and myofascial pain.

The trigger point model states that unexplained pain frequently radiates from these points of local tenderness to broader areas, sometimes distant from the trigger point itself with referred pain patterns associating pain in one location with trigger points elsewhere.

Compression of a trigger point may elicit local tenderness, referred pain, or local twitch response. The local twitch response is not the same as a muscle spasm. This is because a muscle spasm refers to the entire muscle contracting whereas the local twitch response also refers to the entire muscle but only involves a small twitch, no contraction.

To view a short video on trigger points, click here.

Many therapists, physicians and specialists are well versed in trigger point diagnosis and therapy. These include physiatrists (physicians specializing in physical medicine and rehabilitation), family medicine and orthopedics. Osteopaths as well as physiotherapists, chiropractors, athletic trainers, occupational therapists, acupuncturists, massage, sport and rehab therapists and structural integrators are also aware of these ideas and many of them treat trigger points in their clinical practice.

One of the most popular and effective ways of treating trigger points is with dry needling.

Dry needling often provides immediate relief and abolishes referred pain where other methods fail. In 1979, a study by Czech physician Karl Lewit reported that dry needling had the same success rate as anesthetic injections for the treatment of trigger points. He dubbed this the ‘needling effect’.

Health insurance companies in the US, the UK and elsewhere now cover dry needling as part of a therapy regime.

To book on the Level 1 Dry Needling course, please click on the Dry Needling Courses tab above and select a country / region and the course you wish to attend.

Have you registered your details yet? You must first register your details here to give us your info before booking on a course.

If you have already registered, then log in here and navigate to the DN course webpage you want to attend to submit your booking.

Not all professions in all countries/states allow you to train and practice dry needling. The law for PT’s in South Africa, the UK, Canada, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Holland, Switzerland, Spain, Qatar, Saud Arabia, the UAE etc (where DN is in the scope of practice of PT’s and thus permitted) is different to that in Singapore, Poland and Germany for example (where DN is NOT in the scope of practice of PT’s and thus NOT permitted).

Furthermore, the law for PT’s in the USA is different from state to state; in Arizona, Ohio, Illinois, Nevada DN is permitted, in places like Washinton state and Maryland, there is no formal ruling wheras in Florida, Hawaii, New York and California, DN is not permitted for PT’s. The onus is on you, the professional to check with your professional organisation whether you are legally permitted to train and practice dry needling in the state / country where you live.

Club Physio cannot be held liable for any professional therapist who books and pays for a DN course that they are legally and professionally not permitted to take or attend or practice in their state / country; no refunds will be applied if an incorrect booking is made.