Course Information

This page contains information about the content and delivery of the courses as well as pre-requisites, assumed knowledge and  required reading.

Level 1 Online Theory Module


This is the first step to completing any Dr Vodder Course. When you register in a class in Australia, New Zealand or Malaysia, you will be provided with access to the online material and supported through this phase of the training by Jan Douglass.

The course is delivered via lecture series prepared by physicians from the Dr. Vodder Academy, Austria. Subjects include history and context of the Dr. Vodder method, anatomy and physiology of the lymph vessel system and connective tissue, pathological changes occurring as a result of impaired lymph flow as well as the physiological effects of MLD and contraindications. 

Completion of the required reading, lecture series and exam are expected to take 20 – 45 hours and should be completed before commencing any practical class. The online material is available in multiple languages.


Successful completion of the online theory module enables continuation to any Level 1 or basic Neck and Face Practical course.

Level 1 Practical

This is 4 days of intensive hands-on training in the fundamental skin movements necessary to perform Dr Vodder's MLD, and is a prerequisite to all further Levels. Sequences for the application of MLD to each body part are taught with a focus on superficial lymph pathways. Knowledge gained in the theory module is integrated into the practical application of MLD to enable the therapist to clearly understand and experience the direct effects of MLD on lymph-moroticity, the skin, and loose connective  tissue.

Level 1 Practical classes are open to all therapist entering either the Therapist or Aesthetician training streams and there are no practical assessments.


Level 1 prepares the student for treatment of the pathologies taught in both the Level 2 and Level 3 classes.

Level 2 Applied MLD


This 4 day practical class builds on the techniques learned in Level 1 to treat all indications for MLD other than circulatory disorders and lymphoedema (which are taught in Level 3). During this second 4 days of practical instruction, the subtlety and precision in performing the MLD techniques is reinforced, improved and further adapted for application to the various pathologies taught.


Treatments covered in class will include whiplash, burns, migraines, tinnitus, CRPS, stroke, sprained ankle, knee arthroplasty and cruciate ligament repair, adhesive capsulitis and hip pathologies - which cover only a small portion of all possible pathologies. Clinical reasoning and treatment principles are taught which will allow the graduate therapist to assess clients for suitability to receive MLD, and plan an appropriate treatment using MLD. Once learned and understood the treatment principle can be applied to address any non-infected acute or chronic inflammatory condition where the lymph system remains intact.

Upon successful completion of the practical and clinical assessments, graduates will be awarded the Certificate in Applied MLD from the Dr. Vodder School International. 

Level 3 Combined Decongestion Therapy

This 9 day class includes 2 days of advanced lymphology with Professor Neil Piller and 7 days of intensive practical training in lymphoedema management with Koby Blanchfield.


The practical classes build on the techniques learned in Level 1 and adapts them to treatment of a damaged lymphatic system. This includes the correct application of MLD to redirect lymph flow, compression therapy (bandages & garments), oedema exercises and skin care. Applications include treatment of primary and secondary lymphoedema, lipoedema and chronic venous insufficiency oedema. There are practical assessments on MLD, bandaging techniques, and clinical reasoning.

The theory components include the pathophysiology of edemas generally, as well a phleboedema, lymphedema and lipoedema specifically. Differential diagnosis of oedema is explained. There are written and oral theory assessments.

Upon successful completion of the theory, practical and clinical assessments, graduates will be awarded the Certificate in MLD & CDT from the Dr. Vodder School International.

Aestheticians Advanced Neck & Face

This 4 day hands on course provides training in Dr Vodder's MLD for the Face with a focus on developing the very light and precise hand skills required to perform MLD for cosmetic surgical oedemas and other highly sensitivie dermatological condition such as roseacea.

Upon successful completion of the theory and practical assessments, graduates are awarded the Aestheticians Certificate in Advanced Neck and Face from Dr Vodder Schools International.

Prerequisites and assumed knowledge


Dr Vodder Certificate in Applied MLD

Dr Vodder Certificate in MLD & CDT


Enrolment is open to persons with any of the following qualifications*:

  • Medical Doctor

  • Naturopath

  • Occupational Therapist

  • Physiotherapist

  • Podiatrist

  • Registered Nurse

  • Remedial Massage Therapist

  • Massage therapist* (minimum 500 hour’s training)

See the full list of Acceptable Qualifications for entrance into the Level 2 or Level 3 courses here

Dr Vodder Aesthetician courses (Level 1 Body and Advanced Neck & Face)


Enrolment is open to persons as listed above or with any of the following qualifications*:

  • Certificate or Diploma in Beauty Therapy

  • Certificate in Spa Therapy

  • Certificate IV in Therapeutic Massage

  • Certificate or Diploma in Aromatherapy

MTC Lymph Taping courses


Enrolment is open to persons who have a lymphoedema management qualification or demonstrated experience and to graduates of the Level 2 courses

* Evidence of the relevant qualification is required with registration.


It will be assumed that participants in these course will have the following minimum level of knowledge


  • Human anatomy - at least 100 hours of prior study including

    • ​the circulatory system including location of major blood vessels and blood vessel anatomy

    • the nervous system, particular the autonomic nerves

    • the skeletal-muscular system including names and location of major joint and muscle attachments

    • the skin and subcutaneous tissue including the structure of loose connective tissue

    • basic understanding of the lymphatic system including the location of major lymph nodes

  • Physiology - at least 100 hours of prior study including

    • ​thorough understanding of the function and interaction of body systems

    • basic understanding of the exchange of fluids between blood capillaries and connective tissue

    • basic knowledge of the innate and adaptive immune systems

    • Basic understanding of the processes of acute and chronic inflammation

  • Medical Terminology -at least 10 hours of prior study including

    • ​anatomical directions and planes such as: distal, medial, frontal, sagittal etc

    • correct names for common pathologies such as neuralgia, nephritis, seroma etc.​

Course materials and required reading

Items provided within the course fee at each Level

  • Online Theory Module (included in the Initial Registration Fee)

    • online access to the lecture videos for up to 2 years

    • access to online tutorial sessions with Jan Douglass (maximum 3)

    • certificate of completion

  • Level 1 (included in any Level 1 registration)

    • printed description of the techniques and sequences

    • online access to practical videos of techniques and sequences for up to 2 years

    • Dr Vodder Certificate and license fee

  • Level 2​ (included in the Certificate in Applied MLD)

    • printed description of the techniques and sequences

    • online access to practical videos of techniques and sequences for up to 2 years

    • Dr Vodder Certificate and license fee

  • Level 3 (included in the Certificate in MLD & CDT)

    • printed manual including the theory presentation and description of the techniques and sequences

    • online access to the practical videos for lymphoedema of the upper- and lower-limbs, and lymphoedema bandaging for up to 2 years

    • all bandaging materials needed to complete the classroom activities

    • Dr Vodder Certificate and license fee

  • ​MTC Courses

    • enough CureTape ​to complete all classroom exercises

    • CureTape scissors

    • printed manual including theory presentation

    • colour PDF the taping applications

    • MTC Certificate

Required Reading (not included in the course fee)

  • All Dr Vodder Courses

    • Textbook of Dr Vodder’s Manual Lymph Drainage: A Practical guide. 2nd Ed. Wittlinger 2018​

    • E-version available on Google Play

    • Hard copy available from most online booksellers

  • ​Certificate in MLD & CDT (Level 3)

    • Lymphedema Diagnosis and Therapy. 4th Ed. Weissleder and Schuchhardt​

    • Hard copy available from most online booksellers

Student and Therapist Agreements

Participants in Dr Vodder Courses will be asked to sign a student agreement and medical disclosure form at the commencement of each course. These agreements ensure that the participant;

  • Agrees not use the techniques taught in the Level 1 classes for treatment of pathologies

  • Agrees to participate in the practical sessions both performing and receiving MLD for each of the techniques and body parts covered in the training

  • Agrees to disclose to the instructor any medical condition which may be a contraindication for receiving MLD during the classes

  • Agrees not to copy or reproduce material supplied during the course

  • Agrees not to teach MLD unless the Vodder Schools International Instructor training program has been completed.

Student and Therapist Agreements are available to view and print in the Download Centre.

MTC Lymph Taping Certificate

This 2 day hands on course provides training in the most up to date applications of lymph taping. You will learn the correct and skilful application of CureTape and how it can be used for lymphatic indications including seroma, breast oedema and the use of lymph taping as an alternative to compression. 

Upon successful completion of the workshop, participants will be awarded a Certificate from Medical Taping Concept.