What is the International PNF Association?
Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation (PNF) was developed at the Kabat¬ Kaiser Institute (later renamed Kaiser Foundation Rehabilitation Center) over a period of 5 years, 1946¬-1951, by Herman Kabat, MD, a clinical neurophysiologist, and Physical Therapist, Margaret "Maggie" Knott.
Mr. Henry Kaiser, whose son had Multiple Sclerosis, provided the financial backing for the Institute, at first in Washington, D.C., and later in Vallejo, California. Originally PNF was developed for patients with neurological deficits, especially Poliomyelitis. Later, the PNF concept was expanded into a treatment philosophy and approach which could be used for musculoskeletal as well as neurological deficits.
PNF was taught at the Kaiser Vallejo Hospital to therapists worldwide through post¬graduate courses. These therapists learned PNF in Vallejo and then shared their knowledge with colleagues in their respective countries.
In 1973, Dr. Martin Wilhelm Zinn, the medical director of the Thermalbäder Bad Ragaz, Switzerland, invited Maggie Knott to Bad Ragaz to teach PNF. Several years later, PNF became a solid part of the post-graduate program in Bad Ragaz. Sue Adler, a PNF instructor in Vallejo, came to Bad Ragaz in 1979 to present the first Advanced PNF course. In 1981, Sue returned to Switzerland and instructed the first Instructor course there which resulted in 8 international PNF instructors. The first meeting of the International PNF instructor group took place in 1985. The instructor group continued to grow and in 1990 the International PNF Association (IPNFA) was formed. The INPFA consists of IPNFA instructors as well as persons interested in the PNF Approach who strive to maintain the objectives of the IPNFA.