This course will provide the clinician with an understanding of the treatment concepts, as well as specific techniques, in order to effectively incorporate Instrument-Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilizations (IASTM) to common musculoskeletal disorders of the upper quarter. This course will review the fascial system, including local and regional fascial tracks, as well as the pathophysiology of fascial dysfunction. The evidence supporting the biological effects of IASTM on soft tissue healing, as well as clinical outcome studies will be summarized. The treatment principles and parameters of IASTM will be presented, including soft tissue assessment and treatment strategies, indications, relative precautions and absolute contraindications, the role of complimentary treatment approaches and the importance of immediate re-assessment. Other principles of IASTM, including recommended treatment time, appropriate degree of applied force and proper sequencing of physical therapy interventions will be discussed, based on scientific principles and expert opinion. Different tool options will be addressed and the advantages and disadvantages of each will be summarized. This course lecture will be supplemented with over 40 video-based techniques. The videos will emphasize correct patient positioning and execution of IASTM techniques. Clinical relevance will be highlighted throughout the course as specific clinical indications and case studies will be presented.

Course Objectives

  • Identify 3 specific functions of fascia
  • Identify 3 specific biological effects of IASTM
  • Identify 5 clinical indications for using IASTM to the upper quarter
  • Identify 2 features of IASTM tools and the effect that these features have on the treatment effect (tissue penetration).

Course Agenda

  • 8:00 – Fascia
  • 8:15 – Instrument- Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilizations (IASTM)
  • 8:45 – Basic techniques
  • 9:10 – Advanced techniques
  • 9:20 – Case study
  • 9:30 – Q/A Session and Adjourn


  • Dr. Robert McCabe, MS, DPT, OCS

Dr McCabe is a clinician, researcher, and educator with 25 years of clinical experience in orthopedic and sports physical therapy. He is currently the director of human performance at the Gabreski Air National Guard Base in Westhampton, NY. His role at Gabreski includes overseeing injury prevention, performance and rehabilitation services for all military personnel. He has extensive experience in the treatment of patients with orthopedic and sports-related conditions. including recreational, elite and professional athletes. He previously worked at NYU Langone Medical Center and the Andrews Institute, where he worked under Dr. James Andrews. Bob received his transitional doctorate degree in physical therapy from Arcadia University, a master’s degree in physical therapy from Long Island University and a master’s degree in Ergonomics and Biomechanics from New York University. He obtained his bachelor’s degree in health science from Cortland University. Bob is an NSCA certified strength and conditioning specialist (C.S.C.S) and an APTA Board Certified Orthopedic Clinical Specialist (O.C.S). He is certified in the Functional Movement Screen (F.M.S) and the Selective Functional Movement Screes (S.F.M.A) and is completing his certification in manual therapy through Evidence in Motion. He has advance training and coursework in Graston instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilizations, EXOS performance training system, Active Release Therapy and the McKenzie Method to Mechanical Diagnosis and Therapy (MDT). Bob has published several research studies in peer-reviewed journals and has presented at national conferences.


Contact Hours: 1.5

Price: $49


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