Dermal-Fascial Restoration®

Our unique advantage which allows us to get better results faster 

  Are you unable to do what you needlove to do because of pain & stiffness? 

What is Dermal-Fascial Restoration® (DFR®)?

DFR®, formally known as the Mettler Release Technique® (MRT®), is a manual therapy intervention developed by Dr. Paul Mettler right here at Mettler Center. It is backed by clinical scientific evidence and years of successful outcomes.

We use the technique to assess and treat areas of pain and injury caused by soft tissue tightness and stiffness, which is a strong contributor to musculoskeletal pain and functional limitations, to restore the tissue, thereby enhancing movement and function.

Should I Consider DFR®?

Do you have acute or chronic conditions along with pain or impairments with the following:


Post Surgical Procedures

  • Joint replacements
  • Spinal: back and neck
  • Cesarean deliveries
  • Mastectomy

Knee, Ankle & Foot

  • Plantar Fasciitis 
  • Achilles tendon
  • ACL/MCL 

Hip & Back

  • SI Joint
  • Pirformis
  • Labral repair

Post-Surgical Scars


TMJ/TMD, Headaches or Whiplash


Head, Neck, Shoulder


Sports & Work Related Injuries


Muscle Spasms



  • Tendonitis
  • Carpal tunnel

How many of these symptoms apply to you? If the answer is at least one, come talk to a physical therapist.
Schedule a free consultation.

History of Dermal-Fascial Restoration® (DFR®)



Paul Mettler discovered a way to restructure adhesive scar tissue that connects the deeper layers to muscle fascia—without causing further injury.

The innovative treatment method was termed MRT® (Mettler Release Technique®) and has since been named as Dermal-Fascial Restoration® (DFR®).



Mettler Center received the second place award for clinical usefulness at the The Fourth International Fascia Research Congress (FRC) for its presentation entitled Use of High Frequency Shear Wave Elastography (HFSWE) to Identify and Evaluate Treatment of Fascial Adhesions



A poster presentation titled Bidirectional Skin Tension Creates Subcutaneous Fascia Movement, was presented at the 2018 International Fascia Research Congress.



DFR® is being taught to other physical therapy clinicians.

The technique will be able to help countless people that are outside of the Champaign-Urbana, Illinois area.

Dr. Paul Mettler, PT, DPT

Dr. Mettler, A Pioneer

Developed MRT® manual physical therapy technique for physical dysfunction which has recently been renamed to Dermal-Fascial Restoration® or DFR®.

Patented orthopedic side-sleeping pillow “U-Sleep®” being sold on-line through Pillows With A Purpose™ at websites such as Amazon, Bed Bath & Beyond, and Hammacher Schlemmer.

Now, Dr. Mettler is in the process of developing Mettler Institute in downtown Chicago to focus on cutting-edge adhesion research and clinical training and education.


Take action, reach out, and let’s talk.

The first step toward recovery is to schedule an appointment with us.

How does DFR® work?

We are able to very specifically identify the location of hidden adhesions in the connective tissue and then manually apply the right amount of tension and torque on the tissue to free the adhesion almost instantaneously. We may have to work through different layers to release the entire adhesion. In addition, identifying biomechanically what caused the problem in the first place, will allow patients to maintain their results and avoid re-injury.

I've tried physical therapy before with limited results. How is this different?

We help many people who have “failed physical therapy” in the past or are told by medical professionals there is nothing more they can do. The proof is in our consistent results and the fact that our number one referral source is word of mouth. Simply put,  we get outcomes that often no one else can.

We have heard from countless patients who tried everything but nothing worked till they experienced DFR® in conjunction with treating the cause of the impairment and not just the symptoms. Many of these patients had lost hope and were incredibly frustrated until a family member or friend told them to try Mettler Center and DFR®. We have patients that travel for hours just to be seen in our clinic because they know it works unlike anything else.

How will I know it is working?

During treatment you may experience some burning or sharp sensations, this is the active releasing and restoration of the tissue. Patients typically experience a noticiable difference in pain levels and range of motion even after just one or two treatments.

What should I expect with treatment?

DFR® is never a treatment by itself, but is done in conjunction with other traditional therapy methods (e.g., conventional medical treatments, manual physical therapy, exercise and massage).

What are the side effects of DFR®?

After treatment, the skin is temporarily red and sensitive, feeling a bit like sunburn. This is normal and is indicative of the increased blood supply to the area. You may apply ice, aloe, or any kind of lotion to soothe the skin as needed. Please refrain from putting muscle ointment on the area immediately after treatment.

What research has been done on this treatment?

Dr. Mettler and his team recognize the importance of using advancing technology to help explain what is occurring during treatment. This began with the use of ultrasound imaging and continues today with the latest technology: High Frequency Shear Wave™ Elastography.

The team’s initial findings with this technology were nothing short of remarkable. The results were compiled in a research abstract which was awarded second prize by the Journal of Bodywork & Movement Therapies and was later presented by Dr. Mettler at the Fourth International Fascia Research Congress (FRC) in Washington, DC.

A poster presentation titled “Bidirectional Skin Tension Creates Subcutaneous Fascia Movement,” was also presented at the 2018 International Fascia Research Congress.

Continued research efforts will further expand at Mettler Center under the guidance and direction of Dr. Mettler.

Can I receive this specialized treatment elsewhere?

Currently, Mettler Center is the primary place someone can experience the healing effects of DFR®. However, starting in Fall 2020, Dr. Paul Mettler is excited to begin teaching this technique to other clinicians so that more individuals can be positively impacted by this remarkable treatment.


“I had no pain for the first time in 4 years! It was amazing! Mettler Center is by far the best Physical Therapy I’ve ever had and I’ve been through a lot of PT!”


“Very very effective, worth my time . More effective than any doctor, pill, or shot.”


“I’ve done so many different kinds of therapy and nothing has ever gotten me to squat deep again or not be in pain while walking around. Not until I came across DFR®. It’s pretty crazy and awesome.”


“This has been an unbelievable experience for me, from a treatment standpoint. I was at a point where I was really frustrated and almost ready to give up hope.  I had a lot of adhesions and really tight areas that no one had ever identified before. I’ve had tons and tons of gains- better movement and the ability to be active again.  It has changed my life” 


“I’ve had physical therapy other places over the years- no comparison.”


Therapists Using DFR® Treatment

Every physical therapist at Mettler Center has received extensive training on DFR® from Dr. Paul Mettler and other experienced senior therapits. 

Jeff Schroder, PT, MPT, DPT

Jeff Schroder, PT, MPT, DPT

Vice President of Operations & Outreach

J.T. Park, PT, DPT, MTC

J.T. Park, PT, DPT, MTC

Vice President of Rehab and Finance

Benjamin Kim PT, DPT

Benjamin Kim PT, DPT

Physical Therapy Coordinator

Matthew Gordon, PT, DPT

Matthew Gordon, PT, DPT

Senior Physical Therapist

Peggy Hau, PT, DPT

Peggy Hau, PT, DPT

Physical Therapist

Jasmine Evans, PT, DPT

Jasmine Evans, PT, DPT

Physical Therapist

Kimberly Painter, PT, DPT

Kimberly Painter, PT, DPT

Physical Therapist

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