FAQ's / What to expect

"Strain and Counterstrain" sounds like it could be a aggressive form of therapy - is it safe?

The originator of the technique, Dr. Lawrence Jones, DO, FAAO, named it based on the concept that the body suffered a "strain" that caused the dysfunction(s), and he was applying a "Counterstrain" to his patient to correct the dysfunction(s).  The actual treatment process is very gentle since it involves positioning tissue in "ease," thereby alleviating nervous system maintained abnormal tissue tension.  It does not involve forceful or rapid manipulative techniques to "change tissue."  

Why have I never heard of this technique before?
Strain and Counterstrain is a relatively new technique in the field of manual medicine. The first research article to study Counterstrain’s effect on the stretch reflex was not published until 2006. [See: Stretch Reflex and Hoffman Reflex Response To Osteopathic manipulative Treatment in subjects with Achilles Tendonitis, JAOA, Vol. 106, Sept. 2006.]

Once a tissue has been released, is the effect permanent?
Yes, in general, the effect is permanent. However, some “spasms” with underlying conditions like fibromyalgia will require more extensive treatment.

How many treatments are generally needed to experience relief? 

Most patients will experience significant relief within 1-6 sessions and be discharged to a home program within 12 sessions. If no change is noticed within the first 6 sessions, we typically advise that you contact your doctor for further evaluation.

Are “traditional” physical therapy techniques employed as well? 
Yes, most patients in addition to hands-on treatment will require ergonomic instruction, and will be given condition specific therapeutic exercises that can be performed at home.


On your first visit, please wear comfortable clothing such as sweat pants or a T-shirt and avoid thick, rigid clothing like jeans.

Your attending therapist will perform a detailed assessment which may include: mobility testing, strength testing, neurological tests, spinal motion testing, palpation for neuromuscular tender points and similar tests. Following the exam, you will receive your first treatment. This will consist of manual therapy techniques to correct the restrictions we’ve identified in your body, ergonomic instructions and/or instructions for a home exercise program.  The initial visit typically takes 1 to 1 1/4 hours and follow-up visits typically last between 45 minutes and 1 hour (depending on diagnosis).

Please arrive 15 minutes prior to your first scheduled appointment time to fill out the necessary paper work, or you may click on the appropriate buttons below to print the intake paperwork and bring it to your first appointment.   If you are not using your insurance you will not need to sign the Assignment of Benefits form.   If you are intending to utilize your insurance , you will also need your insurance card and possibly a referral from your physician (as required by your insurance carrier).   

Also please choose one of more of the most appropriate disability measure(s) pertaining to your issue(s) using the button belowThe four options are the Back Index, Neck Index, Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand, or the Lower Extremity Functional Scale. Please choose the ONE answer for each question that is the closest to what you are experiencing.