Trigger points are tight bands of muscle fiber within a muscle. Dry needling is a safe technique which uses thin filaments inserted through the skin directly into these trigger points. The insertion of the filament releases the trigger point and decreases pain. This allows for greater pain free range of motion and allows the muscle to contract more normally. Dry needling is not the same as acupuncture – the practitioners are trained differently and it has a Western medicine origin, not rooted in Eastern or alternative based medicine. This technique is typically used in conjunction with other physical therapy interventions such as stretching and strengthening.