EDS ECHO Finding Functional Foundations Registration

Welcome to the registration page for the EDS ECHO Finding Functional Foundations (FFF) Course

About EDS ECHO Finding Functional Foundations

The EDS ECHO Finding Functional Foundations™ (FFF) course is suitable for licensed physical therapists/physiotherapists wanting to learn how to use principles of neuroplasticity to retrain alignment and stability in hypermobile patients. Using biofeedback and specific cuing methods, this approach retrains the brain allowing patients to improve faulty proprioception, strengthen deep stabilizers, learn proper physical alignment, and apply those skills to functional movement. This leads to decreased pain and neurological symptoms, and improved function.

The course is taught by Susan Chalela, PT, who has 27 years of PT practice experience, much of that working with hypermobile patients. Susan’s clinical practice focuses primarily on cervical instability; however, her approach addresses everything below the cervical spine because a stable foundation is essential for a stable cervical spine. Susan’s approach is respected world-wide for its effectiveness in patients with hypermobility, especially for those with cervical instability. Prof. Leslie Russek, PT, PhD, is assisting Susan in running the program to ensure an optimal student/instructor ratio, especially for the lab activities.

Who Can Participate?

For safety reasons, this program is currently only available to licensed physical therapists/physiotherapists who are currently treating patients with EDS/HSD. We hope to make it available to other health professionals in the future.

Course Aims and Objectives

This course is appropriate for physical therapists who want to integrate neuroplasticity and movement biofeedback into their practice. By the end of this program, participants will be able to apply the principles and techniques of the Finding Functional Foundations™ approach to managing neuromuscular impairments in patients with hypermobility spectrum disorders (HSD) / hypermobile EDS (hEDS) through:

  1. Applying principles of neuroplasticity to motor learning in people with HSD/hEDS.
  2. Utilizing biofeedback strategies to assist patients in developing stable alignment and movement patterns.
  3. Integrating safe movement patterns into functional activity training.
Susan Chalela_EDS ECHO FFF

Susan Chalela

Prof. Leslie Russek_EDS ECHO FFF

Prof. Leslie Russek

Course Curriculum and Structure

The course has nine 2-hour sessions across 13 weeks, with three modules of three weeks separated by two-week breaks. Sessions are on the Zoom platform. During the program, participants can also access professionally produced training videos created by Susan.

Each session will include a presentation, demonstration, hands-on lab practice, and case discussion.

Participants must be able and willing to engage in the hands-on exercise activities, i.e., participants cannot just watch or listen. Participant safety screening and accommodations for all movement training will be discussed and applied as they would be applied to patients.

All sessions are led by Susan Chalela with Prof. Leslie Russek assisting.

The course covers the following topics:

  • The mechanism and importance of neuroplasticity in HSD/hEDS.
  • Teaching patients more effective proprioception.
  • Using biofeedback devices to retrain proprioception and motor control.
  • Applying the ‘Alignment Rule of 5’ to guide patients through a methodical approach for assessing their alignment.
  • Applying the ‘Movement Rule of 5’ to help patients grade muscle activation during the engage, hold and release phase of exercise.
  • Using a laser to train proprioception and stability.
  • Applying principles of body awareness and stability to functional activities.
  • Identifying precautions and contraindications for specific movements or positions and recognizing when movements are not appropriate.

Course Assessment

To receive a Certificate of Completion in the FFF approach, participants must:

  1. Attend at least 7 of 9 sessions live, and must view any missed sessions.
  2. Submit an FFF Care Plan describing an 8-session treatment program for one client using the FFF approach. The care plan must use the template provided and include the contents included in the template. Each treatment program will be reviewed by Susan and Leslie to ensure that it accurately reflects the FFF approach. If the treatment program has significant gaps, the participant will be given feedback regarding ways in which it might not have followed the FFF approach. Participants who demonstrate a full understanding of the FFF approach are eligible for the Certificate of Completion in the FFF approach. Participants may revise their FFF Care Plan once, if needed, to demonstrate competency.

A Certificate of Attendance from the Ehlers-Danlos Society will be provided to participants at the end of the course, even if those individuals have not completed the ‘FFF Care Plan’.

Course Fees

The Finding Functional Foundations™ (FFF) course costs $500 USD per participant, which includes 18 hours of coursework plus course materials and access to Susan’s professionally created training videos during the course, time to complete the Care Plan Assessment, a Certificate of Completion and 18 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™ Continuing Education (CE) credits.

Course costs are in USD (United States Dollars). Please use your preferred currency converter to convert into your local currency.

Please note, refunds are not available if you are unable to complete the course.

Equipment Needs

Participants must also have access to some of the key equipment to engage in the lab activities; this equipment is also necessary to fully implement these principles with patients.

Participants must have access to the following equipment to participate in the lab activities. Many participants are likely to already own some of this equipment or may be able to use their clinic equipment for the specific labs. Participants also need access to several pillows and space to lie down, sit or stand to perform movement labs.

  • Click to View Equipment List and Estimated Costs

    EquipmentEstimated Cost

    Pressure biofeedback unit: Chattanooga, CoreCoach or other.


    Laptop/tablet/phone stand so exercises are hands-free.
    Click to see picture for example of stand to hold biofeedback pressure gauges


    Head laser.


    Face cradle, table with face hole or airplane neck pillow for lying prone with neck in neutral.


    Small Pilates or similar ball, approx. 6”-8”.


    10 foot (3 meter) non-elastic strap such as a yoga or mobilization strap.


    Resistance band/loops: several strips or 12” loops of varying tension.


    2-4” thick foam cushion for balance training; optional air-pad type balance device.


    Air pillow type chair back support.


    Large gym (Swiss) ball for sitting on (optional).



How to Register?

Please complete the registration form below to register your place on the EDS ECHO Finding Functional Foundations Course (FFF2).

This course runs from September 2024 to January 2025. The course structure, dates and times can be viewed below. Places are limited to 21 participants per course and are on a first-come, first-served basis.

This is a virtual course using the Zoom platform. It is run from North America, and is open for registration to licensed physical therapists/physiotherapists worldwide.
Please visit https://www.worldtimebuddy.com, or your preferred time zone converter to confirm the correct start time in your location.

If you have questions about the registration process please contact us at echo@ehlers-danlos.com

Course Schedule:

SessionSession TopicCourse FFF2: September 2024 to Janurary 2025

Mondays at:
6:30pm – 8:30pm Eastern Time (US & Canada)


Posture: Standing, lying down/sleeping, sitting. Posture labs.

September 16, 2024

Gait, shoes, orthotics. Gait labs.

September 23, 2024

Finding Neutral Pelvis and engaging deep stabilizers and Isometric 6 way hip for pelvic and hip stabilization using biofeedback. Dynamic Hip Exercises with pelvic stabilization using biofeedback. Biofeedback training labs.

September 30, 2024
Two Week Break

Scapulothoracic stabilization using biofeedback stabilizer and upright exercises with same applied principles. Biofeedback training labs.

October 21, 2024

Head laser biofeedback. Yoga-posture strap. Prone BFS.

October 28, 2024

Cervical stabilization using pressure biofeedback.  Hinge hip. Sidelying clam. Biofeedback training labs.

November 4, 2024
Two Week Break

ADL and IADL (hinge hip), ergonomics, computer/office/car, supports, bracing, WC. Practice labs.

November 25, 2024

Applying principles of stabilization to using gym equipment and functional activities. Practice labs.

December 2, 2024

Functional training, accommodations: Pulling it all together.

December 9, 2024

‘FFF Care Plan Assessment’ Submission Deadline

January 13, 2025

PLEASE NOTE – Session topics, guest speakers and dates are subject to change.

The program content is currently only presented in English. Automated closed captioning is available during the Zoom sessions.
This is a virtual program, you will be sent a link to join the sessions which are run via the zoom platform.

For all queries regarding EDS ECHO, please email our EDS ECHO Program Coordinator.

Registration is Open

Please complete and submit the following information to register for a place on the EDS ECHO Finding Functional Foundations (FFF2) Course.

  • After making your ticket(s) selection, click ‘Get Tickets’. You will then be asked to complete a registration form for each ticket you have purchased.
  • Registration for this course will close 24 hours prior to its first session or when full.


The numbers below include tickets for this event already in your cart. Clicking "Get Tickets" will allow you to edit any existing attendee information as well as change ticket quantities.
EDS ECHO Finding Functional Foundations (Sep 2024 - Jan 2025. Course Code: FFF2)
  • This fee covers your participation in the:
  • EDS ECHO Finding Functional Foundations (FFF2)
  • Sep 2024 - Jan 2025. Course Code: FFF2
USD $ 500.00

In support of improving patient care, this activity has been planned and implemented by The Ehlers-Danlos Society and Project ECHO®.  Project ECHO® is jointly accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), to provide continuing education for the healthcare team.


AMA Designation Statement
Project ECHO® designates this live activity for a maximum of 2.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™ per session, and a maximum of 18 Credits for the whole Course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. 

Disclosure Statement
Project ECHO®, in compliance with the ACCME Standards for Integrity and Independence in Accredited Continuing Education, requires that anyone who is in a position to control the content of an educational activity disclose all relevant financial relationships they have had within the last 24 months with an ineligible company.

None of the planners and presenters for this educational activity have relevant financial relationship(s) to disclose with ineligible companies whose primary business is producing, marketing, selling, re-selling, or distributing healthcare products used by or on patients. 

Alan Hakim, MD; Stacey Simmonds; Paul Gardener; Owen Moore; Lara Bloom, Prof; Clair Francomano, MD; Susan Chalela;

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