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An Introduction to Dermoneuromodulating

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An Introduction to Dermoneuromodulating

An Introduction to Dermoneuromodulating

This course includes
1:19:56 of Course Material (View)
Lifetime access after purchase
Certificate of completion
This course was recorded in July 2020


Dermoneuromodulating (DNM) is a method for handling the human body and, most of all, its nervous system, in order to facilitate change, particularly in terms of its pain and motor outputs.

DNM will not replace everything therapists have already learned, but it may provide a new conceptual container for it. At the very least it provides the participant with a novel approach to handling that is patient‑ and nervous system‑friendly.

Light and interactive, DNM ignores musculoskeletal structure and instead targets pain directly, by focusing on the nervous system, continuous from skin cell to sense of self, directly. The only “structures” considered in any depth will be skin and the cutaneous nerve, long ignored in manual therapy ‑ participants will be exposed, perhaps for the first time , to the extensive branched system that innervates skin.


DNM Will Provide Participants With:

  • An expanded frame through which they can set up the all-important treatment relationship
  • Assess patients and their pain problems from the brain’s perspective
  • Teach the patient about pain production without faulting them
  • Recruit their cooperation for manual handling, and
  • Put patients in charge of their own recovery.


DNM and Persistent Pain:

DNM is based on Melzack’s Neuromatrix framework of pain as output, the most clinically useful pain model in existence from an interactive manual therapy standpoint. Persisting pain is the reason most patients come to see a manual therapist.

DNM is a fully interactive treatment model: unlike a strictly operative model, in which, for example, biomechanical “faults” must be found, then “corrected”, DNM considers biomechanical expression as defense, not defect.

We put “pain” first; i.e., we put the nervous system of the patient (not their anatomy), and their own subjective complaint, their own interoceptive reality, front and center in the treatment encounter; we add a bit of strategic novel stimuli, then we wait a few minutes, and allow the nervous system to self‑regulate. The subsequent improvement in motor output is assessed and regarded as a sign that the nervous system now works with less intrinsic stress.

Who This Introductory DNM Course is for:

This online introductory DNM course by Diane Jacobs is for all healthcare practitioners interested in learning a manual therapy approach that is patient‑ and nervous system‑friendly. Physiotherapists (physical therapists), occupational therapists, chiropractors, massage therapists, osteopaths, and all healthcare providers are invited to join this course.

This is a free Embodia Member course with Diane Jacobs that will serve as an introduction to dermoneuromodulating and how to incorporate it into clinical practice. If you would like to learn more about Embodia Memberships and how you can get this course for free, please reach out to us at


The instructors
Diane Jacobs

Diane Jacobs graduated from U. Sask with a physiotherapy diploma in 1971, started using manual therapy in 1983, and went solo in 1994. She has been interested in pain science and working cutaneous nerves into the manual therapy story since 1998; she calls this ‘dermoneuromodulating’.

She helped to found the Canadian Physiotherapy Association Pain Science Division in 2009 and served on it until 2014.

In 2016 she published a book, DermoNeuroModulating. She retired in 2020 from practice and teaching, but still answers questions and maintains a DNM Facebook group.

Course Material included in this course
  • Q&A
  • Start of Q&A
  • How Much Pressure to Use
  • Playing Jazz
  • Treatment Demo
  • Final Questions
  • What's Next
  • Feedback
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