Clinical Companion To Fix Your Own Back

Managing a lumbar disc injury in the clinic requires an understanding of the mechanics of flexion intolerance, appreciation for how the injury morphs over time, and how pain science flows with the process. This requires an approach that incorporates a functional toolbox, not just a structurally oriented viewpoint. Participants in this event will learn structural and functional assessment techniques to find the complaining disc before it produces neurological symptoms. Treatment strategies utilizing movement re-patterning exercises will help you teach patients to help themselves. Special attention will be paid to common exercises to avoid in the gym and rehab environment which frequently result in re-injury.

This course is a lecture/lab course. Please wear comfortable clothing you are able to move freely in. Exercise apparel is encouraged.

Learning Objectives

*This course is for licensed physical therapists, chiropractors, medical doctors, naturopaths, acupuncturists, osteopaths, etc.
Personal trainers and bodyworkers may attend only with waiver obtained directly from Dr. Snell.

  • Recognize the effectiveness of exercise interventions in managing this serious and common type of spine presentation.

  • Learn to integrate current pain neuroscience into management of chronic back pain.

  • Recognizing the continuum of flexion related structural injury.

  • Differentiating the injured disc vs. other commonly presenting back injuries.

  • Developing familiarity with specific exercise interventions to manage pain.

  • Train hip dissociation by improving spine stabilization using Prague School and U of Waterloo derived principles.

  • Integrate Joint by Joint Approach to spare the spine by improving mobility in the hip and T-sp.

  • Safe ways to build strength in the recovering flexion-injured spine.

  • How to build agility in the injured spine to avoid re-injury with rapid movements.

  • When to add power exercise into the rehab programs.

  • Sport specific considerations in rehab of the flexion-intolerant back.
  • Histochemical associations between painful vs. non-painful herniated discs.

Dr. Phillip Snell

Dr. Phillip Snell maintains a clinical practice in Portland, OR with focus in sports injury, rehabilitation and manual therapy. As adjunct faculty at University of Western States, he takes part in clinical education of chiropractic students and has participated in NIH funded research of chiropractic methods. Dr. Snell is also the creator and content manager of a service for clinicians to assist in incorporating corrective exercise into practice.

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Harkness Room-East Campus Athletic Village
79 Peck Drive, Troy, NY

Hours of the course
Sat 9-5, Sun 9-3

12 Continuing Education Units Accredited
12 hrs CEU’s will be available for Physical Therapists and Chiropractors in most locations, but availability may depend on course location.


“I took this course over 3 years ago. It is still the blueprint for treating patients with low back pain of a discogenic origin. It has greatly formed my clinical thought process with this specific population. I’m confident treating the condition/presentation that I otherwise would have referred out.”

Porter Brown, DC, Thunder Bay, Ontario

“This course synthesizes the leading research in back pain treatment and rehabilitation into a highly effective and useful format that I could apply Monday morning.”

Steve Shirley, DC, Spokane, WA

“The Fix Your Own back course is a refreshing approach to a terribly misunderstood topic. I learned more in two days about flexion intolerance than I have in my entire coaching career, while enjoying every minute of it. It’s an excellent balance between an education seminar and an engaging hands on experience.There’s no doubt, Dr. Snell is an expert on the topic but more importantly, he’s able to impart his knowledge in clear, concise fashion. I left the course with a much better understanding of the topic, practical steps to take back to my clients and genuinely excited put it all into action. Highly recommended!”

Mike Panarella, Personal Trainer, Vancouver, BC

“This course will 100% help you more effectively diagnose, educate and, most importantly, empower patients with debilitating low back pain to take back control of their lives and learn that there are other options out there besides surgery.”

Andrew Caroon, DC, Vancouver, BC

“This was hands down the best continuing education course I have attended during my years in practice. Dr. Snell dives into the research and boils it down to a concise, but well thought out set of tools for doctor and patient. I have been able to successfully implement what I learned in this course as soon as I returned to my clinic and the outcomes have been wonderful.”

Nate Coppock, DC, Yakima, WA

“I enjoyed this course and would recommend it to “seasoned” Chiropractor’s like myself. The addition of proper exercises to our injured patient’s recovery plan is a win-win for everyone and this course will help you do a better job of it.”

Joe Cresanti, DC, Everett, WA

“Dr. Snell’s course should be mandatory for every physical medicine practitioner that comes across low back pain. It is the quintessential course for not just treating the symptoms, but uprooting the cause of the problem and empowering the patient to recognize, understand and implement techniques to help them get out of pain, back into activity and become more robust so as to help prevent recurrent episodes.”

Chase Waldrup, DC, Seattle, WA

“Although I am still in my student internship at UWS I was able to apply the methods I learned in this course on Monday morning when I had a new patient come in with an acute disc herniation with radiculopathy. I was able to apply Dr Snell’s exam flow to quickly and efficiently arrive at a diagnosis, and had my patient who hobbled into the office due to extreme pain in tears (of joy) by the end of the visit as she was able to walk out with significantly less pain, educated on the mechanism of her injury, and a bunch of tools to help her control her pain, strengthen her back, and navigate her life without fear of movement.”

Zach Morcom, Chiropractic Student, University of Western States

“Dr. Snell’s FixYourOwnBack Clinical Companion Course was one of the most practical and informative courses that I have ever attended. Dr. Snell’s passion and years of experience and knowledge really shined through in his teaching. The information and skills you learn are able to be implemented first thing in your office the following week and give you the tool box to assess and deal with all types of presentations of low back pain. I highly recommend this course!”

Chad Eldridge, DC, Los Angeles, CA

“…Had my most severe low back patient since taking your class in Charlotte. Needed a friend to help move. Worked the magic you taught and in 2 visits made huge progress.”

–Brian Strump, DC, Charlotte, NC

“I was offered the chance to attend Dr. Snell’s course by a friend of mine who is a clinician. As a strength and conditioning coach I was unsure of how practical this course was going to be for outside of general continuing education. Not only did I learn about the research of back pain and deepen my understanding of various etiologies but with the second day of the course I feel more empowered than I previously was to communicate effectively with clinicians who refer me their patients then continue to work with the patients in my field to bring them back up the continuum of health and physical performance.”

Justin Willis, San Diego, CA