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Dry Needling – Intramuscular Stimulation IMS

Dry Needling is a modern and effective approach for treating a multitude of musculoskeletal problems.

About Dry Needling – Intramuscular Stimulation IMS

Dry Needling Intramuscular Stimulation (IMS) is a modern approach that uses sterile, single-use disposable needles, with the main goal to release myofascial trigger points. Myofascial trigger points are points in the muscle that feels tight and painful on compression, stretch or movement.

This approach is based on Western medicine principles and research, and involves multiple advances of a filament needle into the skin and muscle. 

Dry needling use techniques called pistoning or sparrow pecking. Both of these techniques rely on in-and-out needle insertion. This makes this therapy different from acupuncture (in which the needle stay inserted in the skin for longer period of time). The needle may be inserted in the area of pain, or the surrounded area.

The length of time of the treatment is determined by your clinician.

Is Dry Needling Therapy recommended for me?

Dry Needling is effective for treating a multitude of musculoskeletal problems, including:

Neck, back and shoulder pain

Tendinopathies (Tennis Elbow, Golfer’s Elbow)



Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Repetitive Strain Injuries

Chronic Pain


Sports Injuries

At Back in Motion, Dry Needling is one of the techniques utilized by Physiotherapists to support your treatment. A recommended course of treatment can be made after a complete assessment by one of our trained Back in Motion therapists. Contact us today to book an appointment or to learn more about these services.

Benefits of Dry Needling IMS:

Dry Needling is a safe and effective alternative treatment. Through the insertion of needles in specific points of the body, this technique:

  • relieves pain (by the release of inflammatory chemicals)
  • relieves muscles spasms
  • increase flexibility and range of motion
  • increased blood flow in the area

Why Choose Dry Needling IMS at Back in Motion Health?

Our Team treats a wide range of injuries and conditions in our state-of-the-art health centres. Each clinic features private treatment rooms and the latest in therapy, exercise equipment and treatment techniques.

  • Experienced and knowledgeable team of clinicians
  • Wide range of treatment and services under the same roof 
  • Convenient locations across the Lower Mainland and Victoria
  • Easy Online Booking
  • Direct Billing
  • Free Parking

Before Your Appointment

The Health and Safety of our clients and staff is Back in Motion’s #1 priority. Back in Motion internal Health & Safety Committee has developed and implemented a comprehensive Safety Plan, to make our clinics safe for clients and staff. We have made changes to the facilities, operational and administrative processes. To review our plan, review our Covid-19 Safety Plan page.

At the booking time (in-person, phone or online), you will perform a health assessment check, to verify if you are experiencing any Covid-19 related symptoms. This health assessment will be redone 36 hours prior to your appointment, and at your appointment time. 

If you have booked your appointment, but you are experiencing Covid-19 related symptoms, please call us to cancel your appointment, and seek help with your family physician or nurse practitioner, or by calling 8-1-1.

If there are any specific preparations required for your appointment, you will be advised prior to your appointment day.

During Your Appointment

On the appointment day, it is recommended to wear loose fitting clothes that can easily be rolled up or maneuvered. In certain cases, clinicians will give you a gown to wear in order to access the area of treatment.

Your clinician may ask you a few questions (additional to the comprehensive assessment performed in your first appointment) to better determine if dry needling IMS is recommended for you, and what you should expect from the treatment. 

The approach involves the insertion in-and-out of the needle, which may cause a reflexive response of the muscle – like a twitch. When needling the trigger point, it causes a rapid release of a tense muscle band, decreasing tightness and sensitivity.

Patients may experience a mild discomfort when occasional twitching occurs, as well as cramping sensation or dull ache during treatment. The dull ache may last up to 24 hours post-treatment. 

During the treatment, you may also notice a small amount of bleeding at the needle site, which may cause mild bruising. Individuals may also experience fatigue, dizziness or fainting. Your clinician will monitor your symptoms throughout the session and will decide to continue or interrupt treatment. 

At the end of the session, you will be reminded to book your follow-up appointments, when needed. You may do that with your clinician, call one of our locations, or book online.

After Your Appointment

It is normal to have mild to moderate muscle soreness after dry needling treatment. Drink water, stretch, move your body and apply heat to the sore muscles to reduce the duration of the soreness. Side effects include mild muscle soreness and bruising in some patients. If you are experiencing any other symptoms at the site of the application, contact us to speak with your clinician.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Dry Needling IMS safe?

Yes, dry needling IMS is a safe technique. Needles are sterile and meant for a single-use, so there is no risk of infection or transmission of disease. Back in Motion Clinicians that utilizes this technique are trained to safely apply the needles, and understands the precautions and contraindications to this technique. 

Individuals may experience minimal discomfort during treatment. It is common to feel aching during and after treatment, up to 24 hours. During the treatment, you may also experience a small amount of bleeding at the needle site, which may cause mild bruising afterwards. Individuals may also experience fatigue, dizziness, and fainting.

Does Dry Needling IMS have any side effects?

Dry Needling IMS treatment have very few adverse effects and complications from its use. After treatment, very few individuals presented are dull ache and/or bruising at the site of application, and fainting.

Does Dry Needling IMS hurt?

Dry Needling IMS involves the insertion in-and-out of the needle, which may cause a reflexive response of the muscle – like a twitch. When needling the trigger point, it causes a rapid release of a tense muscle band, decreasing tightness and sensitivity. Patients may experience a mild discomfort when occasional twitching occurs, as well as cramping sensation or dull ache during treatment. The dull ache may last up to 24 hours post-treatment.

Is Dry Needling IMS appointment covered by my extended health plan?

Clients should refer to their specific Extended Medical Plan coverage for details on services and coverage/limits available. Generally speaking, most insurance plans offer coverage for this treatment if the plan includes coverage for physiotherapy. If you have coverage, Back in Motion Health directly bills most Extended Health Plans (verify if your plan is on our list), or provides a medical receipt to be used on request for reimbursement.

Locations That Offer Dry Needling IMS


#107-1975 McCallum Road, Abbotsford
Phone: 604-425-1550
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#202 – 405 North Road, Coquitlam
Phone: 604-424-9524
Book Appointment Online

North Vancouver

1394 Main Street North Vancouver
Phone: 778-729-1300
Book Appointment Online


#140 – 6651 Elmbridge Way, Richmond
Phone: 604-233-2347
Book Appointment Online


#210-7525 King George Blvd Surrey
Phone: 778-728-0360
Book Appointment Online


#208-333 East Broadway Vancouver
Phone: 604-343-2018
Book Appointment Online


4th Floor – 3301 Douglas Street, Victoria
Phone: 778-747-0311
Book Appointment Online

Insurance Claims & Information

Get Back to Health after an Accident or Workplace Injury.

Extended Health Coverage

Back in Motion offers Direct Billing to most Extended Health plans, which means little to no out-of-pocket expense to you.

ICBC Insurance Claims

Back in Motion’s team of clinicians, including Physiotherapists, Massage Therapists, Occupational Therapists, and Kinesiologists, all have extensive experience in administering ICBC treatments.

WorkSafeBC Claims

Workplace injuries are usually as a result of trauma or overuse. If you have been injured as a result of a workplace activity, our team of experts at Back in Motion can perform a comprehensive assessment and develop a treatment plan to reduce your symptoms and rehabilitate your injury.

If your claim is approved by WSBC, your initial assessment is 100% covered with a WorkSafeBC Claim number. Once your claim has been accepted by WorkSafeBC, the full treatment cost of your appointments will be funded (within the approved time parameters). When you are ready, your physiotherapist will work with you, your employer, physician, and WorkSafeBC Case Manager to develop a safe and appropriate return to work plan. If your claim has been denied or is disallowed, the expenses will need to be covered by the Client.

Our Core Values

Achieve Excellence - Do What It Takes

Ask Questions - Seek Solutions

Teamwork – Achieve More Together

Respect All – Always

Measure Up – Evidence-Informed Practices & Innovation

Honour Our Word – Do the Right Thing

Our Satisfied Clients

We're so thankful to have such amazing patients that have taken the time to share their experiences on Google, Facebook, and other online sources. To contact us to provide feedback and suggestions, Email us.

"I love this clinic! Super personable, professional, helpful, friendly...I love love love them. It also helps that they have physiological, kin, and RMT services all in one place."

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Rating: 5/5

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