Total Spine Thrust Manipulation

Learn the evidence and skills to competently and confidently perform thrust manipulations to treat common clinical syndromes.

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Course Overview

Thrust Manipulation Physical Therapy Course

This course will cover current best evidence in the use of thrust manipulation to treat common clinical syndromes. Laboratory sessions will focus on the safe and effective delivery of thrust manipulations to the lumbar spine, sacroiliac joint, thoracic spine, and cervical spine. Lecture material will focus on the developing body of literature regarding safety of thrust manipulation, clinical examination, the use of thrust manipulations with commonly treated patient presentations, and where manipulation fits into the overall plan of care.

Patient presentations include (but not limited to):

  • Cervicogenic headaches
  • Acute and chronic neck pain
  • Mechanical low back pain
  • Neck related arm pain
  • Back related leg pain
  • Sacroiliac joint dysfunction.

Additional lectures will cover the neurophysiological effects of manipulation and the importance of a fitness forward approach to patient care.

Student to faculty ratio: 15:1 (maximum of 15 students to 1 faculty).



8:00am - 9:30am
Clinical Reasoning and Cervical Exam

9:30am - 10:00am
Lab: Cervical Exam

10:00am - 11:00am
Lab: Mid Cervical HVLAT

11:00am - 12:00pm
Lab: Supine Thoracic and Supine Rib HVLAT

12:00pm - 1:00pm

1:00pm - 1:30pm
Safety Review / Exam

1:30pm - 2:00pm
Lab: Prone CTJ HVLAT

2:00pm - 3:00pm
Cervical and Thoracic Evidence Review

3:00pm - 3:30pm
Lab: Prone Thoracic and Ribs HVLAT

3:30pm - 4:15pm
Lab: Lower Thoracic and TLJ HVLAT

4:15pm - 5:00pm
Round Robin and Q&A


8:00am - 8:30am
Q&A / Lab: Cervical HVLAT Review

8:30am - 9:30am
Lumbar Exam and Evidence Review

9:30am - 10:30am
Lab: Lumbar HVLAT

10:30am - 11:00am
Evaluation and Treatment of Headaches

11:00am - 12:00pm
Lab: Upper Cervical HVLAT

12:00pm - 1:00pm

1:00pm - 1:30pm
Lab: Lower Cervical HVLAT

1:30pm - 2:30pm
Neurophysiology of Thrust Manipulation & Fitness Forward PT

2:30pm - 3:00pm

3:00pm - 3:30pm
SIJ Exam

3:30pm - 4:00pm

4:00pm - 5:00pm
Q&A / Round Robin

  • Understand the risk factors associated with spinal manipulation and be able to screen patients properly using a thorough history and targeted physical examination
  • Learn the indications and contra-indications for thrust manipulation in all regions of the spine
  • Apply the best available research to the clinical decision making for thrust manipulation in various patient presentations
  • Understand the physiology of thrust manipulation and its value in the border plan of care for patients
  • Demonstrate safe and effective thrust manipulation skills to all levels of the spine
  • Leave with the confidence and skills necessary to integrate these techniques into practice immediately
Additional Information


  • None


  • Entry-level