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Announcements

  • 12. October 2017

    new advanced Instructor Todd Tanner from Vallejo/USA

    and

    new Basic instructor - Janine Del Valle-Ngyen from Vallejo/USA and Philip Villa, Vallejo/USA

    VallejoInstrkl.jpg

    left to right Janine Del Valle-Ngyen (Basic Instructor), Todd Tanner( Advanced Instructor), Philip Villa (Basic Instructor)

For past IPNFA Announcements: see News

  •  

    The objectives of the IPNFA are as follows:

    To promote further worldwide development of the clinical use of PNF
    To maintain continuity and standards in the instruction of PNF techniques
    To maintain continuity and standards in PNF course material for beginning and advanced students
    To educate and train new PNF instructors
    To promote research into PNF theory and practice
    To identify further developments in the PNF concept
    To ensure that developments in neurophysiology and other related fields (ICF, Neuroplasticity, etc) are incorporated into PNF clinical practice
    To develop peer review in order to maintain the necessary clinical and educational standards required to teach PNF

    We hope to see you at one of our courses!

     

What we know today as PNF began as "proprioceptive facilitation", a term developed by Dr. Herman Kabat in the early 1940's. In 1954, Dorothy Voss added the word "neuromuscular" to give us the now familiar Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation, (PNF).

Dr. Kabat's conceptual framework for PNF came from his experience as a neurophysiologist and physician. The works of Sister Elizabeth Kenney, an Australian nurse who treated polio patients with specific stretching and strengthening activities, was an early influence on Kabat. Kenney's work was seen as a departure from the normal treatment at the time, but lacked the grounding of sound neurophysiological rationale. Kabat integrated Sister Kenney's manual technique with Sherrington's discovery of successive induction, reciprocal innervation and inhibition, and the phenomenon of irradiation.
Dr. Herman Kabat

His goal was to develop a hands-on treatment approach that enabled clinicians to analyze and assess a patient's movement while at the same time facilitating more efficient strategies of functional movement. So it is important to recognize that PNF is not just a treatment approach, rather, it is a tool that allows for simultaneous assessment and treatment of neuromuscular dysfunction.

In the mid-1940's, Dr. Kabat's emerging concepts caught the attention of the wealthy industrialist Henry Kaiser, whose son suffered from multiple sclerosis. Together, in 1946, they established the Kaiser-Kabat Institute in Washington, DC. In 1948, another Kaiser-Kabat Institute was opened in Vallejo, California, and a third opened in Santa Monica, California in 1950.

It was in the mid to late 1940's that Dr. Kabat began his search for a Physical Therapist to work alongside him, treating patients using his new concepts. In December 1945 Maggie Knott became the first Physical Therapist to be employed by Dr. Kabat. Maggie came westward from Washington, DC to Vallejo with Dr. Kabat in 1948. 

After coming to Vallejo in 1948, Maggie Knott began to teach other Physical Therapists the patterns and techniques of PNF. That same year she started a post-graduate training program that was attended by therapists from all over the world. This very same post-graduate t raining program still exists today, 52 years later, with a dedicated clinical staff training graduate physical therapists in our 3 and 6-month residency programs. The Programs combine didactic and clinical training that honor the heritage of Dr. Kabat and Maggie Knott.
Maggie Knott

In 1952, Dorothy Voss joined Dr. Kabat and Maggie Knott. Dorothy and Maggie authored the first PNF book in the early 1960's. Together, the three of them continued to develop and refine the foundational concepts of what we know today as PNF.

From its beginnings, PNF has successfully integrated many of the concepts of contemporary neurorehab interventions. The Philosophy and Basic Principles of PNF, together with the specific spiral and diagonal patterns, make up the cornerstone of PNF. PNF also includes mot or learning and functional retention of newly learned activities with the repetition of a specific demand; the use of the developmental progression of motor behavior that enables patients to create and re-create strategies of efficient functional movement; and the biomechanical and behavioral analysis of motor control. All activities within PNF intervention are directed towards a functional goal and are relative to the environment in which the goal is to be achieved.

 

To learn more about the creation of the PNF Concept, you may enjoy reading this article from Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Vol. 5, 453-461, June 2013. 

Please click here 

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