The ABCs of IMS Dry Needling

Everything you need to know about IMS dry needling with a Vancouver physiotherapist.


Vancouver, BC -- (ReleaseWire) -- 04/14/2021 --Have you heard of IMS (intra-muscular stimulation) dry needling? This treatment is quickly becoming well-known for addressing pain and movement Impairments. A new blog from Lift Clinic shares everything you need to know before undertaking the treatment with a physiotherapist in Vancouver. For more, go to

What is IMS Dry Needling?

The technique uses a "dry" needle, one without medication or injection, inserted through the skin into areas of the muscle. Notably, these needles are similar or in some cases the same as acupuncture needles. They're much smaller and generally more comfortable to insert than a hypodermic needle (like the ones used for vaccines).

Other terms commonly used to describe dry needling include trigger point dry needling, intramuscular manual therapy, and IMS (intra-muscular stimulation). Vancouver physiotherapists use IMS Dry Needling in their practice a lot – many clinics in Vancouver offer it as a therapy option, so it's good to understand.

What are the Benefits of IMS Dry Needling with Physiotherapy?

The benefits of IMS Dry Needling are mainly pain relief, better range of motion, and improved motor control/muscle activation. The aim is to ease pain and tension while restoring mobility, strength, or control of the targeted muscle.

To give an example, knee pain from running/jumping or descending a hike can be caused by a lack of mobility in the thoracic region (mid/upper back), hypersensitivity in the low back, reduced range of motion in the hip, weakness of the hip and weakness of the lower leg affecting foot control. Dry needling can be used to treat the low back, hip, and quads with IMS Dry Needling, manual therapy, massage, and exercises. This results in better muscle activation (motor-control) through the hip and foot, and less knee pain with activities.

IMS Dry Needling Applications

- Headaches (may include suboccipital muscles, sternocleidomastoid, upper trapezius, levator scapula)

- Sciatica (may include lumbar paraspinals, piriformis, gluteal muscles)

- Hand and wrist pain (may include forearm muscles, muscles of the hand)

- Low Back Pain (may include lumbar paraspinal muscles, gluteal muscles, quadratus lumborum, hip flexors)

- Knee Pain (may include lumbar paraspinals, hip flexors, quads)

- ACL injury and post-surgical recovery (may include lumbar paraspinals, gluteal muscles, hamstrings, hip flexors, quads, popliteus, and calf muscles)

- Plantar Fasciitis (may include lumbar paraspinals, hip flexors, glutes, hamstrings, and calves, as well as muscles of the foot)

- Achilles Tendinopathy (may include lumbar paraspinals, hip flexors, glutes, hamstrings, and calves, as well as muscles of the foot)

- Shin Splints (may include lumbar paraspinals, tibialis anterior, tibialis posterior, flexor digitorum longus)

- TMJ pain (may include suboccipitals, masseter, temporalis)

- Frozen Shoulder (may include neck paraspinal, upper trapezius, deltoid, rotator cuff)

- Neck Pain (may include muscles of the neck and thoracic regions, suboccipital)

- Tennis Elbow (may include muscles of the neck, wrist extensors, wrist flexors, biceps, triceps)

- Shoulder and rotator cuff pain (may include muscles of the neck, deltoid, supraspinatus, infraspinatus, subscapularis, scapular retractors and protractors, lats, teres major, triceps, and biceps)

Dry needling can be used to treat a variety of head-to-toe conditions. Visit the blog at Lift Clinic to learn more about application, experience, and view a video of an actual treatment. To learn more or book an appointment, call 604-229-3500 or email

About Lift Performance and Rehabilitation
Our team of Vancouver physiotherapists, chiropractors and massage therapists is ready to help you reach your goals as efficiently as possible! Click Book Now to get started, or Contact Us if you have any questions or would like to speak directly to a Vancouver physio, chiro or RMT about your situation before you book. Learn more about how Lift can also assist car accident victims who need ICBC physiotherapy services.

For more information, visit or call +1 (604)-229-3500

Lift Performance and Rehabilitation
Travis Dodds
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