Dr. John Srbely

A photograph of Dr. John Srbely.
Associate Professor
Phone number: 
ext. 52058 (Office), ext. 52058 (Lab)
HHNS Annex 281
HHNS Annex 277, 284a

My interest in clinical biomechanics and neurophysiology evolved during my years as a primary health care provider in chiropractic and acupuncture. Over two decades of clinical observation underscored the fact that these, and other commonly adopted conservative clinical therapies/interventions, have a profound impact on human physiology, the scope and mechanisms of which are still poorly characterized. I began private practice in 1992 where I quickly developed a fascination for the clinical enigma of chronic musculoskeletal pain, the most common form of which being chronic myofascial pain.

My research program adopts a broad and integrative approach to the study of chronic musculoskeletal pain, incorporating both basic and clinical sciences. A major arm to my research program is investigating the underlying pathophysiologic mechanisms using both animal and human models. My research also aims to advance reliable diagnostic criteria (imaging, biomarkers) and physical assessment techniques (quantitative sensory testing, electromyography) that enable effective and reliable treatment and management strategies. By emphasizing transdisciplinary and multi-institutional collaborations, my research program will continue to inform future clinical and experimental initiatives in the field of chronic musculoskeletal pain.


HonBSc - Biochemistry (Laurentian University)
D.C. - Doctor of Chiropractic (Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College)
Ph.D. - Biomechanics/Neurophysiology (University of Guelph)

My overall research interest intersects the fields of clinical biomechanics and neurophysiology. I have a specific interest in the study of chronic pain and joint function associated with aging and chronic musculoskeletal diseases such as osteoarthritis, myofascial pain and fibromyalgia. A unique focus to my research is the study of the pathophysiologic mechanisms of myofascial trigger points, using both animal and human experimental models, and their role in the clinical expression and treatment of pain and joint/muscle dysfunction in chronic musculoskeletal disease.

A core theme of my research is the study of the neurophysiologic phenomenon known as central sensitization. Central sensitization is a neuradaptive state associated with chronic pain, however, the role of central sensitization in the physiologic expression of chronic myofascial pain and pathomechanics in chronic degenerative diseases such as osteoarthritis is poorly understood. My research aims to develop novel and/or enhance existing treatment approaches in clinical pain management (diagnosis and treatment) and musculoskeletal biomechanics/pathomechanics associated with chronic disease and aging.

Duarte, F.C.K., Hurtig, M., Clark, A., Brown, S., Simpson, J., Srbely, J. Z.  Experimentally Induced Spine Osteoarthritis in Rats Leads to Neurogenic Inflammation within Neurosegmentally Linked Myotomes.  Experimental Gerontology,  149:111311.

Srbely, J. Z., Dickey, J. P., Lee, D., & Lowerison, M. (2010).  Dry Needle Stimulation of Myofascial Trigger Points Evokes Segmental Anti-Nociceptive Effects.  Journal of rehabilitation medicine, 42(5), 463-468.

Srbely, J. Z., Dickey, J. P., Lowerison, M., Edwards, A. M., Nolet, P. S., & Wong, L. L. (2008).  Stimulation of Myofascial Trigger Points with Ultrasound Induces Segmental Antinociceptive Effects: A Randomized Controlled Study.  Pain, 139(2), 260-266.

Srbely, J. Z., & Dickey, J. P. (2007).  Randomized Controlled Study of the Antinociceptive Effect of Ultrasound on Trigger Point Sensitivity: Novel Applications in Myofascial Therapy?  Clinical rehabilitation,  21(5), 411-417.

Srbely, J. Z. (2010).  New Trends in the Treatment and Management of Myofascial Pain Syndrome.  Current Pain and Headache Reports, 14(5), 346-352.

Srbely, J. (2010).  Chiropractic Science: A Contemporary Neurophysiologic Paradigm.  The Journal of the Canadian Chiropractic Association, 54(3), 144.

Srbely, J. (2012).  Spinal Manipulative Therapy and Its Role in the Prevention, Treatment and Management of Chronic Pain.  The Journal of the Canadian Chiropractic Association, 56(1), 5.

Bussières, A. E., Stewart, G., Al-Zoubi, F., Decina, P., Descarreaux, M., Haskett, D., Srbely, J... & Stupar, M. (2018).  Spinal Manipulative Therapy and Other Conservative Treatments for Low Back Pain: A Guideline from the Canadian Chiropractic Guideline Initiative.  Journal of manipulative and physiological therapeutics, 41(4), 265-293.

Bussieres, A. E., Stewart, G., Al-Zoubi, F., Decina, P., Descarreaux, M., Hayden, J., ... & Srbely, J. (2016).  The Treatment of Neck Pain–Associated Disorders and Whiplash-Associated Disorders: A Clinical Practice Guideline.  Journal of manipulative and physiological therapeutics, 39(8), 523-564.

Linde, L. D., Kumbhare, D. A., Joshi, M., & Srbely, J. Z. (2018).  The Relationship between Rate of Algometer Application and Pain Pressure Threshold in the Assessment of Myofascial Trigger Point Sensitivity.  Pain Practice, 18(2), 224-229.

Maracle, E. C., Hung, L. Y., Fell, S. I., Osmond, M. R., Brown, S. H., & Srbely, J. Z. (2017).  A Comparison of the Sensitivity of Brush Allodynia and Semmes–Weinstein Monofilament Testing in the Detection of Allodynia Within Regions of Secondary Hyperalgesia in Humans.  Pain Practice, 17(1), 16-24.

French, S. D., Beliveau, P. J., Bruno, P., Passmore, S. R., Hayden, J. A., Srbely, J., & Kawchuk, G. N. (2017).  Research Priorities of the Canadian Chiropractic Profession: A Consensus Study Using a Modified Delphi Technique.  Chiropractic & manual therapies, 25(1), 38.

Srbely, J., Vadasz, B., Shah, J., Gerber, N. L., Sikdar, S., & Kumbhare, D. (2016).  Central sensitization: a clinical conundrum.  The Clinical journal of pain, 32(11), 1011-1013.

Dancey, E., Murphy, B., Srbely, J., & Yielder, P. (2014).  The Effect of Experimental Pain on Motor Training Performance and Sensorimotor Integration.  Experimental brain research, 232(9), 2879-2889.

Dancey, E., Murphy, B., Srbely, J., & Yielder, P. (2014).  The effect of experimental pain on motor training performance and sensorimotor integration.  Experimental brain research, 232(9), 2879-2889.

Wayne, N., Ataman, R., Fischer, S., Smith, L., Lariviere, C., Thomas, S., ... & Santa Mina, D. (2017).  Developing a Research Agenda for the Profession of Kinesiology: A Modified Delphi Study.  Translational Journal of the American College of Sports Medicine, 2(10), 51-56.

Srbely, J. Z., Kumbhare, D., & Grosman-Rimon, L. (2016).  A Narrative Review of New Trends in the Diagnosis of Myofascial Trigger Points: Diagnostic Ultrasound Imaging and Biomarkers.  The Journal of the Canadian Chiropractic Association, 60(3), 220.

Huntley, A. H., Srbely, J. Z., & Zettel, J. L. (2015).  Experimentally Induced Central Sensitization in the Cervical Spine Evokes Postural Stiffening Strategies in Healthy Young Adults.  Gait & posture, 41(2), 652-657.

Kawchuk, G., Newton, G., Srbely, J., Passmore, S., Bussières, A., Busse, J. W., & Bruno, P. (2014).  Knowledge Transfer within the Canadian Chiropractic Community. Part 2: Narrowing the Evidence-Practice Gap.  The Journal of the Canadian Chiropractic Association, 58(3), 206.

Robertson, D., Kumbhare, D., Nolet, P., Srbely, J., & Newton, G. (2017).  Associations Between Low Back Pain and Depression and somatization in a Canadian Emerging Adult Population.  The Journal of the Canadian Chiropractic Association, 61(2), 96.

French, S. D., Parkes, R., Bruno, P., Passmore, S., Hayden, J. A., Srbely, J., & Kawchuk, G. (2017).  Informing a Research Agenda for the Canadian Chiropractic Profession.  The Journal of the Canadian Chiropractic Association, 61(3), 190.

Kumbhare, D., Ahmed, S., Sander, T., Grosman-Rimon, L., & Srbely, J. (2017).  A Survey of Physicians’ Knowledge and Adherence to the Diagnostic Criteria for Fibromyalgia.  Pain Medicine, 19(6), 1254-1264.

Hung, L. Y., Maracle, E., Srbely, J. Z., & Brown, S. H. (2014).  Acute Experimentally Induced Neck Pain Does Not Affect Fatigability of the Peripheral Biceps Brachii Muscle.  Motor control, 18(4), 395-404.

HK*4610 Health and Injury Biomechanics 

Name Role
Bucciarelli, R. PhD Student
Costa, Y. MSc Student
Potter, S. MSc Student
Wade, A. MSc Student