NAIOMT was founded in the United States by Canadian physiotherapists, manual therapy instructors and examiners, Erl Pettman, James Meadows, Cliff Fowler and the late David Lamb, to facilitate their philosophy of the sharing of manual therapy skills. In 1982 they began teaching a series of four manual therapy course levels in Seattle, San Francisco, Denver and Knoxville. The Clinical Residency program began in 1993, and was credentialed as a fellowship program in 2001.

The NAIOMT system has evolved from the Canadian manual therapy program to provide a progressive series of courses and instruction with a strong emphasis on biomechanics, mobilization/manipulation and the interaction of the extremity with the spine (the quadrant system). The Canadian system is possibly the first eclectic manual therapy system, encourages diversity in approaches and avoids adherence to a single view or system.

NAIOMT became incorporated in the State of Oregon in 1994. It is governed by a Board of Directors who are physical therapists and clinicians, with day to day operations the responsibility of its various divisions and the Executive Committee. The majority of the faculty provides clinical instruction and resides in the US.


To be the most compelling orthopedic manual therapy teaching program with an eclectic and inspiring venue offering specificity, focus and a mentorship continuum.

The North American Institute of Orthopedic Manual Therapy, Inc. (NAIOMT) is a private physical therapist-owned organization dedicated to achieving the highest standards of clinical practice for manual physical therapists.

NAIOMT specializes in a flexible teaching program, which seeks to promote the utilization of safe, effective and efficient manual physical therapy management of musculoskeletal dysfunction. It further seeks an environment that is conducive to the application of a reasoned approach to manual physical therapy through critical inquiry and the creation of new knowledge and skills based on scientific study and dissemination of that knowledge.

NAIOMT strongly supports the union of the clinician, academician and researcher to further facilitate the development of quality patient care, physical therapy education and the development of master clinicians.