Kinesiological Electromyography: Fine-Wire Techniques

Saturday, June 24: 4:00pm – 7:00pm
Sunday, June 25: 8:30am – 4:00pm

GCMAS Opening Ceremony at 6:00pm

Quick Links: Description  |  Faculty  |  Objectives   | Agenda  |  FAQ

Course Description

This hands-on workshop will provide clinicians with the opportunity to learn and perform fine wire EMG insertions. This course consists predominantly of case-based discussion, short lectures, with additional opportunity to practice insertions. Course content will include didactic material covering the following topics:

  1. Gross anatomy, neuroanatomy, nerve and muscle physiology foundational concepts;
  2. Electromyography – concepts;
  3. Pertinent anatomy and physiology fine-wire EMG general guidelines (indications, contraindication, consent, and techniques);
  4. EMG instrumentation, choice of equipment, data processing and process quality assessment;
  5. Hazards and complications, instrumentation and troubleshooting; and
  6. Preparation, patient informed consent for procedure, and post-test care, and
  7. Clinical interpretation.

Each participant will have the opportunity to practice fine-wire insertions for 3 – 4 muscles in small groups under the guidance of experienced kinesiological fine-wire EMG instructors, with additional practice time later on the second day. In addition to insertion practice, participants will be provided lectures and case-based discussions to improve their skills in problem-solving EMG data quality issues, and to improve their understanding and skills in interpreting clinical EMG data.

Please Note:

  • Course participants must be willing to partake in the lab sessions both as subject and examiner.
  • Course participants are responsible to investigate their individual state licensure requirement and practice within the scope of their state licensing board.

Course Faculty

Lisa Lighthall Haubert, MPT, DPT, KEMG

Senior Research Physical Therapist,
Pathokinesiology Laboratory at Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center

Sylvia Öunpuu, MSc

Kinesiologist, Center for Motion Analysis
Connecticut Children’s Medical Center

Susan Rethlefsen PT

Physical Therapist IV
Motion Analysis Physical Therapist, Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA)

Jean Stout, PT, MS

Research Physical Therapist III
James R. Gage Center for Gait and Motion Analysis, Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare

Sherry Backus, PT, DPT, MA

Course Co-Director –
Clinical Lead, Leon Root MD Motion Analysis Laboratory
Rehabilitation Department, Hospital for Special Surgery

Carole Tucker, PT, PhD

Course Co-Director –
Associate Dean for Research, Professor & Chair – Physical Therapy
School of Health Professions, University of Texas Medical Branch

Course Objectives

Upon completion of this training program, participants will:

  • Demonstrate understanding of the indications, precautions and contraindications, risks, post-test care involved in performing kinesiological fine-wire electromyographic studies.
  • Demonstrate understanding of gross anatomy and neuroanatomy, muscle and nerve physiology.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the instrumentation, choice of instruments, hazards and complications, troubleshooting used for kinesiological EMG,
  • Perform fine-wire EMG insertion techniques safely and effectively for selected lower extremity a muscles.
  • Be able to identify poor quality EMG data (surface primarily – principles apply to fine wire).
  • Be able to interpret EMG within context of clinical cases.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the instrumentation, choice of instruments, hazards and complications, troubleshooting used for kinesiological EMG.
  • Describe the emerging EMG instrumentation and analyses.
  • Perform fine-wire EMG insertion techniques safely and effectively for selected muscles.


Saturday, June 24, 2023

TimeTopic & ActivityInstructor(s)
4:00 pm - 4:30 pmCourse Introduction & Logistics and Course Pre-testCarole & Sherry
4:30 pm - 5:00 pmGeneral Guidelines and Techniques for Kinesiological Fine-Wire EMGSylvia
5:00 pm - 5:30 pmFine-wire Insertion Techniques & Demonstration: EDL/TA*Sherry
5:30 pm - 5:45 pmPractice Session 1: EDL/TA*All Faculty
6:45 pm - 7:00 pmSession Closing - DiscussionAll Faculty

Sunday June 25, 2023

TimeTopic & ActivityInstructor(s)
8:00 am - 8:30 amLecture/Discussion: Instrumentation & Quality AssessmentSylvia & Carole
8:30 am - 10:15 amPractice Session 2: Fine-Wire Insertion Technique: Tib Post/ FHL *All Faculty
10:30 am - 11:30 pmPractice Session 3: Fine-Wire Insertion Technique: Thigh (Rectus/VL/TFL/Glut Medius) All Faculty
11:30 pm - 12:15 pmLecture/Discussion: Data Interpretation with Boxed LunchSylvia
12:15 pm - 12:30 pmFine-wire Insertion Techniques & Demonstration: Shoulder & ScapulaSherry
12:30 pm - 1:45 pmPractice Session 4: Fine-Wire Insertion Muscles Shoulder & Scapula TBDAll Faculty
1:45 pm - 2:30 pmLecture/Discussion: Interpretation of EMGSylvia & Carole
2:30 pm - 3:45 pmPractice Session 5: Fine-Wire Insertion Technique: Muscles TBDAll Faculty
3:45 pm - 4:00 pmFinal Discussion & Questions and Course Post-testCarole & Sherry

A more detailed schedule and registration information will be released shortly.

Frequently Asked Questions

I do insertions and work with EMG routinely and/or have years of experience, what benefit is there to

In most cases, yes. We encourage you to contact one of the course directors before registering to ensure that you have the appropriate experience to reap the most benefit from the course.

Please refer to the Full-Day course FAQ’s or contact the course directors:

Will this course credential or certify me in fine–wire EMG?

There currently is not a national body that credentials kinesiological EMG; however the Physical Therapy Board of California does Kinesiological Electromyography Certification. The requirements are rigorous and detailed at The certification requirements cannot be addressed in a single-­‐day course as they require extensive clock hours (200) or kinesiological examinations (50) to be eligible to be examined by the board. Our course faculty includes instructors with California Certification and will supervise those course participants from California.

This course will specifically address the following requirements listed for certification in California;1399.63 Training in Tissue Penetration under supervision by a licensed physician or physical therapist certified to perform electromyography:

  • Pertinent anatomy and physiology, choice of equipment, proper technique, hazards and complications, post-­‐test care and satisfactory training in technical skills of tissue penetration
  • This course will review the relevant gross anatomy, neuroanatomy, nerve and muscle physiology.

How many “sticks” will I actually get to do?

In large part this will depend on you learning rate. We are planning on providing opportunity for participants to perform 3 – 8 insertions in lower extremity muscles as part of the course.

Can I insert in someone else, but not have anyone practice on me?

No, its equal exchange for this course. We also think it’s a good idea to understand the sensations involved from the patient perspective.

Can I just register or come to the lecture parts only of the day long course?

Please contact Sherry or Carole to discuss

Can I just sit in on the laboratory sessions?

No – the didactic material and the laboratory content is inter-­‐woven. You cannot really do one without the other, it is a complete package.

Will I get continuing education credit?

Yes, this course, as will the GCMAS conference, is expected to have CME/CEUs approved.

Will I be tested on the course material?

Yes, you will take short pre-­‐ and post course exams that cover each of the course content areas. Your insertions skills will also be supervised and observed by a faculty member. Rest easy, this is not really at all like your “lab practicals” in college, but tend to be enhanced learning opportunities – think warmer and fuzzier. We will also ask you for course feedback and evaluations so we can improve this offering.

Why is it such a long day? Will I have breaks?

We wanted to maximize our time without making people stay an extra night. We do have food and bio breaks of course, we may choose to have “working” lunches and breaks to discuss concepts, or provide you didactic content. So the participants certainly get breaks, though the instructors may not!

Do I have to be a licensed PT or MD? I do not have an entry-level PT degree, but I am student or new graduate of a PT Program. Can I register? I am a non-US licensed clinician. Can I register? I am a non-PT, PhD student who uses FWEMG for research purposes only. Can I register?

Most individuals that do clinical kinesiological EMG are PTs or MDs. In the State of California you must be a PT (or MD). As noted in the course description, each participant must decide if the course content is within and allowed by their specific practice act. If you are not a PT, we recommend that you are a graduate of a 4 year program, and have extensive motion analysis laboratory experience (or similar setting). Graduates of technology or professional 2 year programs (non BS degree) are discouraged.

If you are not a licensed PT, MD or other clinician who is governed by a practice act that allows your profession to perform kinesiologic FWEMG, please contact the Course Leaders who can help determine if you are eligible to participate in the course: