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Integrated Lymph Drainage (ILD) is a precise technique designed to accelerate the normal functioning of the lymph vessel system. It is a gentle, rhythmic, hands-on technique that will enable the therapist to work holistically and to achieve surprising results with their clients.

How was it developed?

Integrated Lymph Drainage is a further development of Manual Lymph Drainage which was developed in the 1930’s in Europe by Dr. Emil Vodder. He intuited this technique and spent his life developing its uses for various conditions from orthopaedic to post-surgical to lymphedema work.

Integrated Lymph Drainage has been developed by a team of physiotherapists working with a wide variety of skills. This team’s work has integrated manual lymph drainage, myofascial release, osteopathic techniques, cranial work, body-mind connections and energetic techniques. ILD is a new skill to be used at this time with other subtle techniques that can empower clients in their own healing process. ILD continues to evolve as the team integrates new advances in health care and develops appropriate strategies to incorporate these.

How is ILD Used?

Integrated Lymph Drainage cleanses the connective tissue of inflammatory materials and toxins, enhances the activity of the immune system, decreases pain and enhances the functioning of the parasympathetic nervous system. It thereby facilitates the healing of injuries, chronic conditions, inflammations and edemas. Some examples of conditions which can be successfully treated with ILD are:

  • Primary & Secondary Lymphedema
  • Traumatic injuries
  • Burns
  • Sinusitis
  • Headaches
  • Whiplash
  • Ulcers
  • Sports Injuries
  • Varicose Veins
  • Pre & Post operatively
  • Pediatric ear infections
  • Repetitive Strains
  • Scars
  • Chronic Bronchitis
  • Raynaud’s Syndrome
  • Rheumatic diseases
  • Fibrocystic Breast Disease

When ILD is combined with other subtle therapies, treatment schedules are shortened and tissues are re-balanced which often prevents the reoccurence of symptoms.

Integrated Lymph Drainage Training Program

Integrated Lymph Drainage is a post-graduate training for health care professionals such as physiotherapists, registered massage therapists, nurses and occupational therapists.

LEVEL 1...

teaches the anatomy and physiology of the lymph vessel system, the effects of lymph drainage, contraindications, the five basic strokes, treatment components for different parts of the body, case studies and therapeutic applications.

Completion of this level enables you to work with the normal, intact lymph vessel system and integrate this within your practice. This course is a prerequisite for Level 2.

Course length: 40 hours (5 days)
RMT CEU’s: 20

LEVEL 2...

teaches new skills for therapeutic applications, reviews the level 1 body sequences, teaches treatment components for the chest and abdomen and specialized techniques for the head and joints. Problem solving skills for the therapeutic application of lymph drainage for orthopaedic conditions, fascial restrictions, chronic and acute inflammations, sinusitis, pre and post operative care and scar work are developed. Combinations of lymph drainage with multi-disciplinary techniques are taught. The intuitive and subtle assessment and treatment of the lymph vessel system is explored. Further information on connective tissue, the new science and body-mind connections is provided.

Completion of this level enables you to treat the above conditions within the scope of your practice. Level 2 is also the prerequisite for Level 3.

Course length: 40 hours (5 days)
RMT CEU’s: 20

LEVEL 3...

focuses on the treatment of primary and secondary lymphedema. In this level, the pathology of lymphedema, the further development of hand sensitivity for assessment and treatment, the assessment of the integrity of the lymph vessel system and new techniques for treating lymphedema and its complications are taught.

Compression therapy including specialized bandaging, compression garments and other techniques are presented. Special attention is paid to problem solving skills, patient self-care techniques, exercise recommendations, skin care and the integration of multi-disciplinary techniques for treating lymphedema. Students will be given the opportunity to assess and treat lymphedema clients during the course.

The completion of all three levels results in a certificate for Combined Decongestive Therapy which is necessary for the treatment of primary and secondary lymphedema.

Course length: 72 hours (9 days)
RMT CEU’s: 36 hours


This 9-hour specialty course will explore topics petaining to the prevention and management of lymphdedema for the post-cancer (of the head and/or neck) treatment client, in a solution focused framework that focuses on the whole person. Participants will gain confidence in their ability to support this client group with excellent assessment and treatment knowledge/skills and practical solutions that empower everyone involved.

This course is for CDT therapists, Speech Pathologists and Healthcare team members working with these patients.


We will also design lymph drainage courses for groups or centres to meet their specific needs. These needs are discussed on an individual basis.

Integrated Lymph Drainage training has been designed to facilitate the learning styles of its students. Material is presented in a variety of ways with clear diagrams, a course workbook, demonstrations, lectures, case studies and individualized attention within a small class size. Attention is paid to creating a balanced, holistic learning environment for the group so that the students can learn to the best of their ability and have skills to take to their practices. Therapists are also supported in developing their intuitive skills in conjunction with this subtle hands-on technique.

Course Calendar

Level 3

March 3 - 7 and 9 - 12, 2020
Barrie, ON


CDT Professional Development

April 24, 2020
Barrie, ON

Please note that all prices are in Canadian dollars.
All tuition must add 13% HST as well.

To register:

To obtain a registration form for any of these courses, please contact us by phone, e-mail, mail or fax.


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