Manual Therapy Forum

Stanley V. Paris, PT, PhD, FAPTA, HONLLD(OTAGO)


I’ve always been a bit of an opportunist, looking for where the opportunities lie.  Not just going with the mob.

– Stanley V. Paris




I have, throughout my career, been disappointed many times in the therapists who let’s say they’re trained in McKenzie (and think everything of it).  But then they take a Maitland course, and they think that’s great and drop everything that they’ve ever learned from McKenzie.  Or next year it might be a Mulligan-type course, and they drop everything else.  Haven’t they learned?  Can’t they integrate?  No, they’re just followers.  They don’t have enough depth of background in the basic sciences of anatomy, physiology, biomechanics (and psychology if you like because it gets in there too) to be able to synthesize this and come up with something that suits their personality and the patients that they are treating.  No, they do it the way according to their latest impressive mentor.

– Stanley V. Paris




Alan Stoddard… I always regarded as the greatest manipulator I’ve ever worked with.

– Stanley V. Paris




I discouraged my faculty from doing research.  Because you can’t be a researcher, a clinician, and a teacher.  I think you need to come into the profession with clinical skills.  So, I wanted my faculty to be mainly clincians and teachers.  Researchers would be third.

I feel that if you look at the quality of most of our research in the last twenty years, much of it, it cluters up our conferences and poster sessions with stuff that we see over, and over, and over again.  Whereas the big questions have not been tackled.  That’s why I’m involved with the Foundation (Foundation for Physical Therapy) today.

– Stanley V. Paris




What could I say about Stanley Paris that some of you don’t already know.  Well, after speaking with him for this conversation… a lot!  Stanley was gracious enough to spend quite a bit of time with me earlier this year and… WOW… just, WOW!  If you think you knew who Stanley was in the history of our profession, you will be surprised by some of the stories he tells.  In hearing a lot of what Stanley was talking about, I couldn’t help but have the feeling like I’m a slacker.  Seriously, just hear all of the things he had done before he was 30 years old and I’d venture a guess that you’d feel the same way.  Yes, he is quite the inspirational figure for so many in our profession and will go down in history as one of the biggest influencers of our craft that is manual therapy.  Please enjoy this conversation with Stanley Paris.


Listen in here:


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We need the occasional passionate teacher who can inspire students to excellence.

– Stanley V. Paris




You do your best at your phase in life and then you have to move on and leave it to others.

– Stanley V. Paris




A leader is a person who will bring together the best talent for what it is we’re trying to do.

– Stanley V. Paris




Measuring Cervical ROM Without Compensation



In this video, Dr. Thomason shows modification of measuring cervical spine rotation active range of motion. This illustrates how patients can easily compensate during this assessment, providing a false sense of range of motion to the clinician. Watch, and try it out for yourself in the clinic!




Remember those brave men and women of our country who gave the ultimate sacrifice that we may enjoy our freedoms for another day on this earth. Please take time to reflect, appreciate, and remember those who gave their lives, that we may live in peace.

Manual Therapy Foundations: Clinical Reasoning for Direct Access Including Safety, Palpation, and Tests – Anaheim, CA

Well, this post is a little late, but better late than never!  The weekend of May 4-6 I had the pleasure of flying down to Anaheim, CA to teach Manual Therapy Foundations:  Clinical Reasoning for Direct Access Including Safety, Palpation, and Tests at California Rehabilitation & Sports Therapy for Comprehensive Manual Therapy Seminars (CrunKeyser, LLC).  The course host, Jeremy Simmons, is a colleague (and dare I say pal) through the Institute of Physical Art and is always a good guy to spend time with.

I love teaching this course because we get to delve deep into anatomy, biomechanics, and safety screening for the spine, ribcage, and pelvis.  Honestly, instructing manual therapy these days seems to be getting more difficult if you’re trying to pass on an artform, or craft, instead of reciting data points from research and giving generalized treatments of mobilization or manipulation.  Hopefully, those in attendance picked up on some of the things we were trying to impart and gain an appreciation for this craft we call manual therapy.

Oh yeah, Jennifer from Cal Rehab set up an awesome celebration of Cinco de Mayo for us all.  So, thanks Jennifer!  And thanks to everyone that came out to take the course!

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Four days in San Francisco

Recently, I got to spend four days in San Francisco with Rachael (a physical therapist… and my wife) and Ray (you may remember him from here, here, and here).  We were all attending Visceral Manipulation 3:  The Pelvis presented by the Barral Institute.  The instructor, Peter Coppola was fantastic.  You may also remember a conversation I had with Gail Wetzler previously where we mentioned some of these courses.

The material covered is exactly what it sounds like (except for the manipulation part… we are not doing high-velocity thrust techniques on organs).  These courses are pretty fascinating because of the amount of detailed anatomy they cover… way more than we’re taught in school.  The amount of skill it takes to perform some of these techniques is impressive, as demonstrated by the instructor.  It may sound hokie from just thinking about it, but the courses are usually paired with before-and-after measurements (i.e. physiologic range of motion) that demonstrate what we just did in a lab really made a change in the patient’s body.  Overall, would certainly recommend manual therapists check them out and consider attending a seminar if interested.

Oh yeah, we got to eat at the famous House of Prime Rib, so there are some pictures of that too.  I’d also highly recommend dining there if you ever get the chance!

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