Course Outlines

Best practices from the fields of rehabilitation, pain management, athletic development, & behavioral modification.

General Course Info

First Principles of Movement

A 100 Hour credentialing program (including 6 face to face workshops plus Self-Directed Learning materials) where clinicians & trainers learn how to

❇️ Transition from passive to active therapies

❇️ Motivate people to become active, return to participation &/or have better adherence to self care.

❇️ Find the key dysfunctions that are holding people back from making sustainable progress

❇️ Avoid corrective exercise or rehab purgatory

Click here to see course schedule.

These are interactive, problem-solving workshops. You can start at any point in the program (since they are divided up  topically).

Dr Liebenson discusses the Clinical Audit Process/Assess-Correct-Reassess Video from Stanford, 2014


WHY Should One Choose to Participate in the FPM series?

  • Learn how to INTEGRATE the art, craft & science of best practices in the rehab to athletic development continuum
  • Learn EFFICIENT strategies to thin-slice implementation of the functional approach in your environment
  • Learn the four guiding PRINCIPLES of management that underpin the many methods

WHAT Can You Expect to Learn?

The  FPM “Best Practices”  series is an ideal prep for changing one’s paradigm from –

  1. Cookie cutter training programs “one size fits all” to personalized programs that bridge the gap from one’s unique current capacity shortfall to the required capacities for their demands
  2. Symptom-based to a focus on the multi-factorial sources of pain (stress, sleep, inactivity, poor diet, under-preparation, over-protection)
  3. Primarily low-value, passive therapies to a high-value, Active care approach (self-care oriented)
  4. Output-based to outcome-based – “its not about winning the exercise, its about winning the adaptation”
  5. Hardware (structural) over-diagnosis approach to software (functional) person-centered approach
  6. Silo-based to patient/athletic-centered approach
  7. Bridge the gap between rehab & athletic development
  8. Pop fitness hype to promotion of movement literacy and “slow-cooked” general physical preparation (GPP)

Learning Objective: To efficiently integrate the “best practices” from the fields of rehabilitation, pain management, athletic development, & behavioral modification for preventing disability & transitioning the chronic rehabber to resilent, sustainable activity tolerance & peak performance.

It takes passion, study & experience to learn how to be STRONG in this model. As Pavel Tsatsouline says “You are strong when you can make the hard easy”. Thus, EFFICIENCY is one of our hallmarks. The other is INTEGRATION since its better to “be a learn it all, not a know it all”. The goal of this program is to teach the mastery mindset, namely learning the nuances that come from gritty determination.

Our Philosophy: The key to a return to participation, a sustainable approach to activity, & enhancing human performance is baking positive lifestyle choices/optionality into our environment. This epitomizes an agile, upstream mindset with minimal downside risk.


2 Day Program

Learning Objectives

Learn how to:

  • Avoid cookie cutters & protocols by developing a client-centered reasoning process
  • Connect the dots from a person’s story to your plan
  • Prepare people for Return to Participation, Play and Performance
  • Assess “yellow flags” of over-protection
    • belief that a person needs a “fix it” approach
    • belief that hurt=harm & physical activity is dangerous
    • lack of confidence &/or commitment to perform self-care independently
  • Assess load or under-preparation
  • Identify activity intolerances and a person’s floor current capacity and ceiling required capacity for their demands
  • Create relatedness through motivational interviewing
  • Perform a 6 part movement prep to assess baseline movement competency and pain tolerance
    1. Sensory-afferent input via the foot
    2. Physiologic “warm-up (heart rate, core body temperature, high-threshold breathing)
    3. Active mobility (hip, shoulder, t-spine, foot/ankle)
    4. Pillar prep (posterior chain & kinetic chain force transfer via the torso)
    5. Special “correctives”
    6. Energy storage & release (i.e. springs & shocks)
  • Gamify constraints-based motor learning (internal vs external cues, problem-solving)
  • Record baseline floor issues distinguishing acceptable vs unacceptable dysfunction as a springboard to measurable & impactful interventions
  • Provide a positive experience with movement to increase tolerance & de-sensitize painful movements
    • Reassurance & Reactivation for gradual exposures to feared stimuli
  • Findthe “hardest thing a person does well” related to their goals/demands by slow-cooking adaptation

What you will learn:

  • How the inactivity crisis is leading to a disability epidemic and an increasing gap between biological age & chronological age
  • Four principles to use as a GPS in finding “Plan B” for rehab & training
    1. Reassurance
    2. Reactivation
    3. Resilence
    4. Risk Management (Variability)
  • How to bridge the gap from
    1. Science to the trenches (knowledge translation)
    2. Rehab to training
    3. Physical activity & bodyweight exercise to load
    4. Current capacity shortfall (e.g.floor) to required capacity (e.g. ceiling or demands)
  • How musculoskeletal pain is a “Gift of Injury” allowing us to promote lifestyle behavior modification that can manage non-communicable disease (NCD) risk.
  • How “vested interests” and the status quo bias promotes over-detetection (e.g. nocebos), over-diagnosis (tests w/ high false + rates), and over-treatment (surgery, injections, opiates, NSAIDs, passive therapies, “corrective exercise” purgatory)
  • The Precision Profile documentation system for client-centered programming
  • How movement preparation is the pre-requisite for athletic development and general physical preparation (GPP)
  • The continuum from Preparation or readiness to Training to Recovery
  • How to give tangible hope and an achievable plan through a positive experience with movement

TRAIN: Building capacity and the trainable menu

Learning Objectives

Learn how to:

  • Perform a needs analysis
    Assess fundamental movement patterns
  • Screen to intervene
  • Program GPP – General Physical Preparation
  • Build a trainable menu
  • Progress & regress within each menu
  • Bridge the gap from current capacity to required demands
  • Incorporate load management
  • Troubleshoot rehab issues
  • Troubleshoot performance issues


  • Movement Prep Immersion
    The 4 Key Principles for Efficient, Precision Results
  • Active learning: Small group problem-solving for the 6 Fundamental Patterns
  • 3 Progression Levels – rehab (1); intermediate (2); Performance (3)
  • Workshop
    • Squats
    • Deadlifts/hinge
    • Lunge – 1 leg bias
    • Push – vertical & horizontal
    • Pull – vertical & horizontal
    • Carry/locomotion
  • Load management/under-preparation basics
  • Threat management/over-protection basics
  • Dynamic Systems Theory, motor learning & skill acquisition
  • Gamification & ecological valid constraints – based training
  • A humble approach for uncertainty: being prepared for Plan B
  • Developing an agile approach: How methods & systems lead to principles & assimilation
  • Case management

Recovery is equally important in the rehab setting as in the gym. In both the clinical & training environments recovery is a pre-requisite for enhancing a person’s resilience.

Without recovery adaptation from training stimulus can not occur. Thus “recovery is the limiting factor”. In this Lab Immersion Experience we will guide you to bridging the gap from sport science and evidenced-based approaches to you’re practice, team or gym environment.

This course completes the series – Prepare, Train, & Recover, thus ensuring you’re ability to build programs designed to sustainably progress a person’s physical development.

Principles from high performance settings have stress-tested many of the innovations that inform
– Rehab
– Development of youth motor literacies &
– Maintenance of health span as people live longer

This Lab Immersion Experience focuses on MOBILITY from the ground up by taking a Joint by Joint approach (including many techniques of Dr Karel Lewit & Pr Vladimir Janda from Prague).

Each area is taught in sequence following basic principles & a systematic process which helps you assimilate the techniques with GPP, & region specific rehab (ie tendonopathies).
Lumbar spine & pelvis
Thoracic spine & rib cage
Cervical spine

Manual Therapy & Self Mobilizations are integrated with other recovery methods such as breathing re-education, sleep, cryo, mindfullness, hydration, diet, threat management, load management, & work (aerobic) capacity (ie repeat effort endurance).

Special “key” areas requiring mobility are taught with extensive practical application
-1st MTP
– Hip
– Thoracic Spine

Building the Precision Program

1 to 2 Day Program

Goals –
– Learn the why behind creating sustainable training programs
– Address issues around fragilistas who want to be babied w/ correctives
– Learn how to pivot those w/ pain relief, weight loss, or body composition goals to progressive resistance training
– Identify goals & concerns through Motivational Interviewing
– Identify floor dysfunctions related to the person’s goals/demands via assessing Basic Training Elements (BTEs)
– White Board where adaptation is most likely – Plan A – to bridge the gap from the person’s floor (current capacity shortfall) to their ceiling (required capacity)
– Discuss resilient planning to find Plan B. Scalable principles for finding precision, personalized sustainable programs


Objectives –
– Learn the bigger picture and how to tie different systems & methods together efficiently
– Gain confidence & agility in handling complexity by utilizing scalable principles
– Communicate more effectively by giving people what they need
– Grand Rounds
– Does GPP have to wait in Rehab?


What you will learn –
– How to use the Person-Centered Profile to create a precision program
– Signs of technical proficiency & how to use these in progressing people to adding load
– Variability & Adaptation In Dynamic Systems
– How to capture & record the key components of The Profile
– CC. AI. MS. Painless dysfunction. Self Care (chief complaint, activity intolerance, mechanical sensitivity).
– Master not only methods but the process
– Gain trust through empathy, but also capture the floor to create a relatable & actionable plan
– Why the key to efficiency is finding the floor which can be a moving target
– How to find the “hardest thing you do well” nested to the person’s floor & their demands.
– How the why behind the what is “you’re only as strong as you’re weakest link”
– Why people don’t improve with attacking things they are already good at (their ceiling)
– Why finding and addressing the weakest link resolves each person’s functional bottleneck

In-Person 2021

Enter your email and we’ll let you know as soon as we’re hosting in-person seminars in your city.

  1. Interview with Aaron Kubal Jochum Strength Podcast 1:05:18
  2. Interview with Dr. Don Berry High Performers Podcast 43:17
  3. Interview with Dr. Liebenson Ezen Inside Podcast 1:33:20
  4. Interview with Dr. Liebenson RAW with Marty Gallagher 1:44:17
  5. Dr. Ryan Chow - Integrated Cient-Centered Model Lee Taft Performance Podcast 39:38
  6. Dr. Ryan Chow - The Intersection Between High Level PT and Hardcore Strength RAW with Marty Gallagher | IRON COMPANY® 1:31:55
  7. In Conversation with Dr Craig Liebenson Australian Chiropractors Association Podcast 44:14
  8. How To Break The Barrier Between Two Worlds, Rehabilitation & Chiropractic Care | Ft Dr. Liebenson Hybrid Unlimited 1:34:40
  9. Strength Rehab, Chiro school, Injury Prevention & Recovery, Sleep, and More Strength Rehab Podcast 21:13
  10. Systems vs Principles w/ Dr. Liebenson Movement Fix Podcast 1:20:56
  11. Patient-Centered Chiropractic Medicine with Craig Liebenson Clinic Gym Radio 1:09:05