Regardless of which teacher or location you choose, the certification process to becoming a qualified Vodder MLD Therapist is the same the world over. It is divided into 4 modules of at least 40 hours classroom instruction for each module.

Class time is divided into theoretical and practical sessions. Theory includes the anatomy and physiology of the lymph vessel system in detail; the effects of Manual Lymph Drainage on various systems of the body and contraindications for use.

Practical sessions include demonstrations and then students work on each other learning routines for all parts of the body. These sessions are closely supervised and class sizes are kept small to maximise each students potential.

There are two different qualifications that can be awarded. Therapy I (Body) for those that work with clients who have a healthy lymph system and Therapy II and III for those who intend to work in a medical setting with patients who have a compromised lymph system.

All Dr. Vodder qualifications are subject to a recertification every two years. These qualify for CPD credits and there are a number of review and re-certification days available worldwide.


The Basic course is a pre-requisite for all other Therapy Courses. This is a post-graduate course and you must show proof of having gained a good grounding in Anatomy and Physiology along with training in, and at least one years practise of, some form of body work. Please click here for more detail on the entrance requirements.

Most applicants are massage therapists, aromatherapists, nurses, physiotherapists etc. If you are in doubt about your current qualifications please ask your Course Teacher for clarification.

As a foundation course the Basic course is not an exam course and therefore you are not qualified or certified to work on the general public. You are awarded a certificate of attendance which does qualify for CPD credits.

Therapy I

Once you have completed the Basic course your next step will be a Therapy I course. This is an exam course. Successful completion of a Vodder MLD Therapy I course certifies you to work on the general public and apply Manual Lymph Drainage (MLD) to people with an intact and functioning lymph system.

Therapy II and III

If you wish, you can continue your studies by learning the more medical applications of Dr. Vodders Manual Lymph Drainage (MLD). This is a two week course held once a year in the UK. This is also an exam course and successful completion certifies you to work with patients who have a compromised lymph system such as those with lymphoedema.

Theoretical sessions, which include treatment protocols for various medical situations, are taught by Dr. Melanie Wohlgenannt who started as a GP and went on to become a Consultant Lymphologist and a Dr. for Public Health in Austria. She was the Medical Director of the Dr. Vodder Schule and Clinic in Austria for many years.

Practical sessions include treatment protocols for various oedemas and introduce the student to bandaging with both short and long stretch bandages.

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