Global Postural Re-Education - GPR is a therapeutic method - which is exclusively manual and does not require the use of machines - for the correction and treatment of pathologies in the musculoskeletal system. GPR was created 30 years ago by the french physiotherapist Philippe Emmanuel Souchard.
Souchard graduated in Physiotherapy at the Paris University in 1962. He is the founder and director of UIPTM - Université Internationale Permanente de Thérapie Manuelle, located in Saint Mont - France, and the author of 18 books.
More than 6.000 physiotherapists from 17 different countries attended his GPR courses. He gives continuous GPR specialization courses in Spain, Belgium, Italy, Brazil (more than 20 years), Portugal, Canada, France, Argentina, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Peru, United Kingdom, Chile, Colombia, Uruguai, Venezuela and Mexico.
GPR starts from the symptom to get at the cause of a skeletal muscle disorder or ailment because it considers that we all have our own ways for resisting and to reacting to injuries or traumas.
When a patient complains of acute pain in the shoulder just after an injury, the cause of that pain is clear and a local treatment will usually suffice. But another patient may have adopted a pattern of raising one shoulder in order to avoid putting too much weight on a sprained ankle on the opposite side. In this case, a chain of compensation probably began in the calf muscles, which increased their tonus to protect the ankle joint; this in turn resulted in an increased tonus of the hamstrings and of the erector spinae muscles and this culminated in a raised shoulder. If this shoulder was kept permanentelly in this position, the patient may end up with a scapular pain.
Of course, the PT can not expect the patient to connect his present shoulder pain to a past event. Only by using the GPR method can the PT establish that connection between the symptom and the cause of the problem (the retraction of muscular chains following an ankle sprain).
During each session, the PT employes a series of gentle and progressive therapeutically sustained postural stretchings in standing, sitting or lying down positions.
GPR patients are required to actively participate in the therapy sessions. During a session, they work in their body, stretching the tense muscles while strengthening at the same time the weak muscles, following the chain that is causing the pains or deviations.
The frequence of the sessions and the duration of the treatment depend on the patients problem. Generally it is recommended one session of 1 and a half hour per week.
Check out the list with the majority of pathologies, conditions and activities in which GPR can be indicated.