Integrative Approaches in the Treatment of Shoulder Pain & Dysfunction

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Course Description

The National Institutes for Health reports that 25.3 million Americans live with chronic pain, while health economists estimate that the cost of chronic pain in the United States is $635 billion annually. According to the authors of Economic Evaluations in Shoulder Pathologies: a systematic review of the literature, Shoulder disorders occupy a significant and growing proportion of musculoskeletal care. In 2005, chronic shoulder pain was reported by 18.3 million persons aged 18 and older, and it was the third most common musculoskeletal complaint after spine and knee pain.Current research is revealing the broad ineffectiveness of pharmaceutical approaches and strongly suggests that successfully treating the multifactorial nature of chronic pain requires an integrative, holistic approach. 
Myofascial release, Tai Chi, and mindfulness are widely recognized mind-body modalities and non-pharmacological approaches in treating chronic pain conditions. This course has been designed to outline the scientific and physiologic basis of key Tai Chi components, instruct simple active myofascial releasee and Tai Chi practices shown to be effective in remediating chronic shoulder pain, and review the evidence base for validating Rehabilitative Tai Chi in the treatment of patients dealing with chronic pain conditions. 

Course Benefits

  • Understand the new, cutting-edge science of pain and its relationship to bodymind physiology
  • Energizing hands-on labs incorporating the 3 key integrative rehabilitation principles
  • Implement 11 bodymind rehabilitation techniques that balance the autonomic nervous system and maximize functional performance in patients dealing with shoulder pain & dysfunction

Course Agenda: (5.5 NC CEUs)

3:00-4:15 pm
The New Science of Pain Physiology (Lecture)

  • Peripheral receptors
  • Spinal Cord Contributions
  • Brain Control Networks/Predictions/Adaptations
  • Autonomic Nervous System Influences
  • Sensation-Based components
  • Neuromuscular Compensations
  • Graded Movement

4:15-5:15 pm
Active Myofascial Release for Shoulders (Lab)

  • Superficial Front/Back Arm Lines
  • Deep Front/Back Arm Lines
  • Manual Release Techniques


Evidence-Based Integrative Approaches (Lecture)

  • Qigong/Tai Chi philosophy and physiology
  • Bioenergetics
  • Primary Integrative Rehabilitation Principles
  • The Role of Mindfulness in Health Care


    6:30-7:30 pm
    Tai Chi Movement for Shoulders Form (Lab)

    • Accordion Breathing
    • Turtle Retracts His Head
    • Swimming Dragon
    • Heart & Lung Opening
    • Earth & Sky
    • Tree Hugging

    7:30-8:00 pm
    Considerations for Effective Implementation (Lecture)

    • Home Exercise Program Development
    • Coding & Documentation
    • Meta-Analysis Research Review

    8:00-8:45 pm
    Tai Chi for Shoulders Complete Form (Lab)

    • 3 Primary Integrative Components
    • Active Myofascial Release
    • All Movements

    Course Objectives

    By the end of this course:

    • By the end of the course, the participant will independently describe 3 elements of each the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems as they affect pain perception in adult rehabilitation clients dealing with shoulder pain and dysfunction.
    • By the end of this course, the participant will correctly describe the neuromuscular patterns specific to adult patients dealing with shoulder pain and dysfunction.
    • By the end of this course, the participant will correctly apply the 3 primary integrative rehabilitation principles in the treatment of adult clients with shoulder pain and dysfunction.
    • By the end of this course, the participants will accurately demonstrate 3 foundational Rehabilitative Tai Chi movements designed to normalize pain perception and neuromuscular function in adult clients rehabilitating from shoulder dysfunction.
    • By the end of this course, the participant, supported by research will independently justify the use of integrative approaches in the treatment of adult clients dealing with shoulder pain and dysfunction.

    Presenter Biography

    Brian Trzaskos PT LMT CSCS CMP MI-C has been a practicing physical and manual therapist for 25 years, with a special interest in research based holistic rehabilitation methods. He has over 1000 hours of Qigong, Tai Chi, and meditation certification training from the Tai Chi for Health Institute, the Institute of Integral Qigong & Tai Chi, and the American Institute of Health Care Professionals. Brian is a Senior Tai Chi Easy Trainer for the Healer Within Foundation and for the past 15 years, he has been directly applying Qigong & Tai Chi for rehabilitative purposes in his clinical physical therapy practice. Brian is the founder and director of the Institute for Rehabilitative Qigong & Tai Chi, which is dedicated to the evidence based application of Qigong & Tai Chi practices as primary treatment modalities in leading edge physical rehabilitation.


    Target Audience

    This course is intended for entry-level rehabilitative professionals (PT, PTA) in applying basic body-mind methodology and Rehabilitative Tai Chi practices for the treatment of shoulder pain and dysfunction. No prerequisite coursework is required.


    Specific to physical therapy practice, this course addresses fluid circulation, body mechanics, balance, joint integrity/mobility, motor function, muscle performance, neuromotor development, pain, posture, and proprioception. This course improves physical therapy knowledge through understanding the scientific foundations of integrative, holistic therapeutic applications and their practical effectiveness in physical rehabilitation.

    Course Logistics

    Date: Thursday 9/12/19 from 3:00-9:00pm

    Location: Randolph Health Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine
    503 North Fayetteville Street
    Asheboro, NC 27203
    Phone: 336-626-3700
    Fax: 336-626-6453


    Tuition includes course materials. Dinner will be available for a nominal cost.