CFS: CoreFirst® Strategies

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CFS: CoreFirst® Strategies
Principles of Posture and Movement which promote an Automatic Core Engagement (ACE)

Prerequisites: None

Required Course Preparation:  Prior to the classroom portion of this course, all students must complete required course preparation.  The preparation for CFS includes videos, quizzes, and articles.  Plan to spend approximately 2 ½ hours learning this important information.  Once enrolled in a course, required course preparation can be found by logging on to your IPA account and selecting "My Upcoming Courses."  If you have any trouble accessing the required course preparation please call our office at 970-870-9521 for assistance. Please note that approved CEUs may vary depending on individual states' treatment of Online vs. Classroom Instruction.

Required Equipment: Please bring a Swiss Ball AND a 36" x 6" Foam Roll to the course on Saturday and Sunday to ensure full participation in exercise sessions.

The size of the Swiss Ball should allow you to sit on the ball with a 100+ (but not more than 110) degree hip-trunk angle. If you do not own a Swiss Ball or cannot use one from your facility, call Ball Dynamics at 800-752-2255 to order one. Please have a credit card number and shipping address available. If you are unable to bring your ball inflated, please arrive early to have this done. A pump will be available at the course.

Foam Rolls may be ordered from a number of providers including: OPTP at 888-819-0121 or; Perform Better at 888-556-7464 or

Recommended Reading and viewing
It is recommended that each participant reviews the Bibliography and read any article they are unfamiliar with prior to the course. All Course Bibliographies

Therapeutic Exercises for Spinal Segmental Stabilization in Low Back Pain, 2nd Edition 2004, Richardson, Carolyn; Hodges, Paul; Hides, Julie.

Lumbar Multifidus Bibliography

MNM Clinical Reasoning Intro video

CoreFirst® Strategies presents a methodical and unique functional assessment and treatment program for patients with dysfunctions of the spine. The CFS approach, originated and developed by Vicky Saliba Johnson, PT, FFFMT, FAAOMPT, trains the therapist to directly correlate an evaluation of the patient’s base of support, alignment, and Lumbar Protective Mechanism to the patient’s motor activation and strength response. Building on this assessment, the participant is trained in five principles to enhance efficient posture, movement, and the automatic-not volitional-activation of the core stabilizers. These principles serve as a kinesthetic checklist for patients during ADL such as sitting and lifting. To complete this dynamic approach to active functional rehabilitation, the therapist is trained in a progressive functional exercise program which addresses flexibility, coordination, strength, stability, and functional movement patterns. The course includes an extensive manual with over 200 photos of posture, movement, and exercise.

Become proficient in three IPA Functional Tests which provide immediate objective data to the therapist and the patient as to the efficiency of the patient’s alignment related to function and pain.

Learn principles of acute care, positioning, and CoreFirst® principles of posture and movement which empower a patient to be independent in ADL.

Acquire the understanding and knowledge to design an appropriate and challenging exercise program that meets the individual needs of each patient for activation of the core, strength, endurance, and motor control.

Instructor Note
The instructors advertised for the course are the intended instructors. The final number of instructors will be determined by course enrollment. Every effort is made to hold the course with the scheduled instructors. Course refunds or transfers will not be granted based on a change of instructors.

Multiple instructors are scheduled for each course. However, the actual number of instructors at a course will be determined by final enrollment.

2.5 Days, 20-22 Hours.  (Approved CEUs vary by state.)

CFS requires attendees to complete online course preparation before attending the classroom instruction. Approved CEUs for this course may vary depending on individual states' treatment of Online vs. Classroom Instruction. Before registering for a course you should verify approved CEUs with your state licensing board or association. State rules are subject to change. IPA courses are approved for PTs for the state in which the course is held.  OTs and PTAs should check with their approving body to determine if the PT approval will be accepted.

No food will be provided during the breaks due to current COVID restrictions. We suggest you bring a water bottle and your own snacks if desired.

Attendees agree to utilize all skills of evaluation, assessment and treatment learned in this course to the extent allowed under the regulations of their professional practice act. By registering you acknowledge that your attendance does not represent authorization by the IPA, or any of its officers, to utilize any of the material learned which may lie outside of the strict interpretation of your practice act.

Each attendee is expected to complete the required pre-course work before the course begins, and attend all hours of instruction to receive a certificate of completion. Any exceptions to this policy must be pre-approved in writing by the Directors.

Lab Clothing
Each participant's body must be accessible for observation. Please refrain from wearing large or sharp jewelry. Also, be aware that Saturday afternoon and Sunday labs require athletic or work shoes. NO JEANS PLEASE.

Women: Sports top or close fitting T-shirts, and shorts or sweats.

Men: Shorts or sweats and T-shirts.

All: Warm-up suits or other clothing worn over the above described attire is advised to ensure comfort between demonstrations, as temperatures may vary in the room.

Course Preparation
This 2 1/2 day workshop is quite demanding and intense.  Please come prepared and rested.  Review the basic anatomy and philosophy of muscle function.  This knowledge will serve as an important foundation for the principles and procedures taught. Be sure to complete the required course preparation listed above.

    CFS Anaheim CA
    Fri, Feb 26, 2021
    Sun, Feb 28, 2021
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    CFS Redmond WA
    Fri, Mar 26, 2021
    Sun, Mar 28, 2021
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    CFS New York NY
    Fri, Jun 04, 2021
    Sun, Jun 06, 2021
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    CFS Antioch CA
    Fri, Jul 09, 2021
    Sun, Jul 11, 2021
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    CFS Glendora CA
    Fri, Aug 27, 2021
    Sun, Aug 29, 2021
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    CFS Alexandria VA
    Fri, Sep 10, 2021
    Sun, Sep 12, 2021
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    CFS Branson MO
    Fri, Sep 24, 2021
    Sun, Sep 26, 2021
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    CFS Lake Forest IL
    Fri, Oct 08, 2021
    Sun, Oct 10, 2021
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    CFS New York NY
    Fri, Nov 12, 2021
    Sun, Nov 14, 2021
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