The Eclectic Approach to Spinal Manipulation: Chilean Style! | Modern Manual Therapy Blog - Manual Therapy, Videos, Neurodynamics, Podcasts, Research Reviews

The Eclectic Approach to Spinal Manipulation: Chilean Style!

My first international course in Chile was just this past weekend! Excluding Canada, America's hat! Sorry Canada, living in Buffalo, it just felt like driving to teach there wasn't the same as teaching in a completely different country!

With the minds behind TherAdvance, Nelson Adrian Serrano and Hernav√°n Salinas Verdugo

What an honor to be invited and to be faculty for TheraAdvance, a group of educators with a very diverse and naturally eclectic background. Plus it's nice to be introduced by someone who can pronounce my last name correctly, because I'm NOT Italian... the "g" makes an "h" sound!

I want one engraved like this!

Disclaimer! I am definitely not opposed to chiropractic, just bad clinicians, passive treatment, and straight subluxation based theory. I feel like the PTs who are doing all the modality slinging and seeing 4-6 people an hour are just as bad... plenty of patients to go around for the good guys.


I learned that Physiotherapy in South America has it's differences and similarities to the US. In regard to spinal manipulation, there are still chiropractors who tried to get this course banned. However, unlike the US, chiropractic here is not well known at all, as it is not a regulated/licensed profession. In fact, the "chiropractors" are actually physiotherapists who went through a diplomat program, and now call themselves chiropractors. The same goes for osteopathy. So the majority of the licensed manual therapy in Chile is performed by physiotherapists. Naturally, when the only opposing group is actually the SAME profession as the group hosting the course, the Chilean Physiotherapy Association was in full support of the seminar. There was also some jerk who learned I was going over some Mulligan Concept techniques and also asked if I was "allowed." The official Mulligan Concept instructors for South America also had no issue... of course this guy is a soma simpleton, so that's not really a surprise now is it... Eat that Nicolas!

other differences

  • lack of chiropractors mean the population is not used to maintenance adjustments
  • manipulation is not taught in ANY entry level physiotherapy program
  • there 20 physiotherapy schools in Santiago alone, 15 popping up in the last 15 years, and I thought Buffalo had too many at 3!


The similarities to what is going on in the US are unfortunate. Many of the participants have either recently taken diplomat programs or advanced Masters in OMPT. They were or are currently still being taught that

  • palpation for position
  • palpation for motion
  • specificity is possible 
  • specificity is needed
  • pathoanatomy, inflammation and the typical medical model for pain
  • emphasis on special tests, and not classification
One of the TherAdvance instructors told me the Physiotherapy program he teaches for just dropped their 1 year of OMPT in the curriculum, for yoga therapy and more modalities! WHHAAAAAAT????

deep squat pwned!

A Chilean Teapot

Mini case to be posted on OMPT Channel, physiotherapist in MVA two years ago, had been treated by co-workers with no relief. However, like many was really doing nothing about it (co-worker Tx were just here and there, no HEP). Right sided neck pain with left cervical sidebending. Cervical retraction with SB and overpressure decreased the pain, remained better as a result. A little IASTM t the right cervical patterns and a right lower cervical downglide thrust significantly decreased the discomfort for HEP. He was very happy.

Language Barrier, what language barrier?
All interpretation was expertly handled by Nelson and some by Hernavan. It was strange having to wait for a joke to be laughed at until the interpretation was finished! Also, try explaining to someone who does not speak or understand English that the Multisegmental rotation test should be observed from behind, he just kept performing the test instead of turning and facing the other way!

The reception to the course has been great and everyone is had a blast learning the new techniques. It's nice to know that the audible "gasp" I often observe by females after a cervical thrust manipulation (cavitation or no) still happens here.

Rocabado's co-workers, they told me he wanted to visit me but was out of the country!
Still flabbergasted he remembers me from taking his courses 8 years ago!

Let's play find the Filipino!
Here are some vids for your viewing and listening pleasure

Keeping it Eclectic and Spreading the Ease...

Post a Comment

Post a Comment