Dry needling uses a solid, filament needle similar to that used in the practice of acupuncture. While this sounds nasty, the process is relatively painless. Dry needling is conducted by physiotherapists who have furthered their studies in order to provide this specialised technique. Acupuncture and dry needling techniques may be similar but their rationale and use in treatment are quite different.
Acupuncture can be applied using meridian points, it can be used in a more western acupuncture style where the meridian points may be used but with more application to anatomy and neurophysiology while dry needling techniques are used in an attempt to normalise muscle spasm.
Here’s an example, a traditional Chinese medicine acupuncturist will needle the top of your shoulder to stimulate your gall bladder channel, whilst a dry needling technique in the same area is a technique to try and relax the tight muscle that is making you uncomfortable.
Physiotherapists at Peak Performance Sports Physiotherapy are trained in Dry Needling and may consider this technique as part of your treatment.