Hospital’s dance class for kids offers physical therapy and fun


Hospital’s dance class for kids offers physical therapy and fun

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Dance Unlimited allows children with a variety of diagnoses to attend physical therapy while enjoying a fun class with other students.
HUMANKIND

AKRON, OH — Walk into a Dance Unlimited class at Akron’s Children’s Hospital, and you’ll be sure to see smiling faces and excited students.

The program was created by former Cleveland Cavalier cheerleader and now physical therapist, Kellie Lightfoot. The class replaces typical physical therapy sessions for kids dealing with various diagnoses, including Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, and autism.

Initially just one class with 13 dancers, Lightfoot now teaches three classes with 60+ students.  The kids learn a variety of dance styles including ballet, contemporary, jazz and hip hop.

The end result? Confidence, happiness, and some pretty cool dance moves.

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Physical Therapy Services Department offers free sessions to students


By Jordan Renfroe, Staff Writer —

The Department of Physical Therapy Services is using their team of orthopedic experienced faculty and students involved in similar studies to offer free physical therapy sessions to students in need.

The program, managed by Assistant Professor Betsy Myers, not only allows students with early on injuries to be examined at no cost, but also allows students studying physical therapy to gain experience in helping patients.

The physical therapy program exposes practicing students to various cases in which they are able to execute real-life decision making skills related to patients. They are also given the opportunity to interact with multiple professionals, including nurses and nurse practitioners.

Myers felt that opening the pro-bono clinic was an adequate way to equip physical therapy students with non-traditional methods in preparation.

UTC will be able to provide a more gradual transition into the clinical arena by providing mentored real clinical practice with faculty precisely reinforcing examination procedures and interventions learned in the classroom,” Meyers says. “Student physical therapists benefit from having a consistent starting point entering patient care in an environment supported by faculty who understand the students’ academic preparedness to date.”

Myers believes in the importance of hands-on training for her physical therapy students, but feels that the services that are in turn provided to students are equally beneficial.

“We are consistent with the ‘Students first’ mentality of UTC. We meet the needs of students who otherwise might not have the funding or the time to see traditional physical therapy.” Meyers says. “In addition, the university community gets to see how addressing problems early on might make large changes and prevent issues from magnifying down the road.”

According to Myers, the program has helped work with over 50 patients, and has saved those individuals up to $11,000 dollars in medical costs.

The clinic is available for scheduling on Tuesdays from 8 am to 12 pm, and Thursdays from 1 pm, to 5 pm. Services are provided from January 10th, and end on April the 17th. To make an appointment, the clinic can be reached at 423-425-2266.

Alina Hunter-Grah

News Editor

Alina is a junior Communications major with a minor in Political Science from Clarksville, Tenn. Alina is also the official Chattanooga Correspondent for 2nd & Church, a literary magazine based out of Nashville, Tenn. Alina dreams of being an investigative journalist or political reporter.



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RepWatch offers a helping hand with physical therapy


Physical therapy could become easier to manage in the near future, thanks to the work of RepWatch, a Westlake Village-based tech startup.

The business, which operates out of the California Lutheran University’s Hub 101, is preparing to release an app and a wearable physical fitness tracker that will allow users to follow their recovery progress.

RepWatch was initially created by CLU students Alexis Schomer, Robert Kyler and John Ikudaisi for Startup Weekend Ventura County 2016, and won the event’s $10,000 grand prize. A year later, RepWatch has evolved from an idea into a growing company. In addition to their impending product releases, the business will be competing for a $100,000 prize at the Arizona State University Innovation Open startup competition on Sunday.

All of RepWatch’s founders have gone through physical therapy for various sports-related injuries and recognized potential to help the industry. Although many physical therapy patients tend to neglect the exercises required for recovery, RepWatch’s stat-tracking can motivate individuals to stay on their exercise schedule to and help facilitate their recovery, according to Ikudaisi, a 21-year-old economics student at CLU.

“Once you go to a physical therapist, they assign you exercises to do, but most people don’t do their exercises,” Ikudaisi said. “We realized there was a huge problem of patient compliance and as a result, there are tons of additional costs in the industry. We came up with an app to allow patients to watch their exercises, track their progress and stay motivated.”

April is set to be a major month for the startup. The upcoming Arizona competition aside, RepWatch will offer a closed release of its physical therapy app and publish a short book on business strategy. The book, aimed at young entrepreneurs, will focus on how RepWatch won last year’s startup competition, while the app will be provided to select parties for testing in preparation for a public launch later in the year.

The company’s physical therapy tracker, which will function like mainstream fitness tracking wearables, is also set to release later in the year.

While still in its early stages, RepWatch has fostered support from several professionals throughout the county. RepWatch’s streamlined data-gathering process appeals to patients and businesses alike, which can ultimately drive down costs and boost recovery times, said Richard Montmeny, chief operating officer at St. John’s Pleasant Valley Hospital in Camarillo and RepWatch partner. Montmeny met the RepWatch team during Startup Weekend Ventura County 2016 and expressed optimism about the future of the business.

“The general way that traditional physical therapy is tracked is by serial measurements by therapists and that information is transmitted on paper,” Montmeny said. “RepWatch’s approach using an app in real time provides a format that can drive down costs and improve patients’ outcomes. They are a great group of people working diligently to provide a service to patients that I think will bring great benefit.”

Although RepWatch is partnered with several business and healthcare specialists, the company’s three founders handle all aspects of the company. Keeping the company on schedule is a full-time job, and the founders work together on everything from technology development to marketing. Kyler, a 22-year-old finance student at CLU, noted that the team had to learn coding on the fly while designing the RepWatch app.

For coding, “we did a lot of learning on YouTube,” Kyler said. “We all did a little bit of everything. Everyone around Hub 101 knows a lot, and we can also ask them questions.”

Hub 101 has been crucial to RepWatch’s success and offers a supportive environment for young entrepreneurs, said Schomer, a 22-year-old CLU business, marketing and entrepreneurship graduate who continues to work at RepWatch full-time. She noted that Hub 101 provides a home and support system for the company that has helped RepWatch continue to grow.

“Hub 101 and Cal Lutheran have been a huge part in our success,” Schomer said. “We’re allowed to use the (office) space and mentors here, and they help us with our app, business model and any upcoming events they hear about.”

More information on RepWatch is available at repwatchtech.com.

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R.A.W. in Ringgold offers wellness treatment and physical therapy for area pets


Animals in North Georgia and the Chattanooga area are getting the full-scale treatment in recovery nowadays thanks the Regional Animal Wellness center in Ringgold, which offers physical therapy and exercise for pets recovering from injuries.

Regional Animal Wellness (R.A.W.) has been growing in popularity since it opened its doors in January 2016, due to numerous treatments it offers ailing animals.

Owner Jeannette Colombo says she fulfilled a life-long dream by opening the center last year. It specializes in exercise, agility, and therapy for dogs and horses.

“It’s something I’ve always wanted to do, so my husband and I bought the building a few years ago and began renovating it,” Colombo said. “We have a playroom, and an underwater treadmill room to help the animals build their muscles. … It’s harder for them to walk through the water than through air.”

Colombo, a licensed practitioner in both canine and equine rehabilitation, says R.A.W. isn’t limited to just helping injured or recovering pets.

“We’re not just a place for hurt animals,” she said. “We’re here for agility animals, hunting animals, basically any dog with a job, like police K-9s. I would actually love to set up a practice ring for K-9 cops, but we haven’t quite gotten there yet. It’s something we’d love to do down the road.”

R.A.W. offers treatment in orthopedic trauma, chronic pain, athletic conditioning, neurologic injuries, pre/post-operative treatment, nutritional support, underwater treadmill treatment, massage therapy, acupressure, and micro-current therapy.

All treatments are based on referrals from veterinarians.

“We have to have a veterinary referral,” Colombo said. “The reasoning behind that is, I don’t diagnose. The vets diagnose the patients, and then we treat them. Also, we want to make sure every client is up to date on their shots and things like that. Once I get the referral, we schedule an appointment and go from there.”

Colombo said she doesn’t have specific hours because she likes to stay open to the patient’s schedule.

“Some people work third shift, some work nine to five, so we try leave room to schedule for everybody,” she said. “If the only day someone has available is on the weekend, we can try to treat them then.”

Each day Colombo is joined at the facility by her three dogs, office manager Miah Emilia, assistant Ethel Riley, and newcomer Elwood Blues who’s “on a mission from God”.

Colombo dedicates her work to the memory her Labrador Ready Jade and horse Cricket, both of whom passed away earlier this year.

“We lost two of our pets, one dog and one horse,” Colombo said. “They were great animals and we really miss them.”

More information about the facility and its services can be found online at regionalanimalwellness.com.

Regional Animal Wellness LLC.

5353 Battlefield Parkway, Ringgold, Ga.

706-290-1477

RegionalAnimalWellness.com

Adam Cook is a general assignment reporter and covers the Walker-Catoosa County area. He has been a reporter since 2009. He can be reached at The Catoosa County News office at 706-935-2621 and by email at acook@npco.com.



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For pain sufferers, physical therapy offers treatment without opioids | Health


DECATUR — Sandy Calhoun didn’t want to have surgery, and she definitely didn’t want to take prescription pain medications.

Calhoun would pop an Advil when her lower back pain got too bad, but for many years she, “just kind of dealt with it.”

Finally, after a car accident, she had an X-ray. The accident didn’t do any damage, but the X-ray showed some signs of joint disease in her lower back.

Surgery was an option, but Calhoun opted to try physical therapy. So far, it’s working.

“I could tell a difference quickly,” Calhoun said. “And the more I do, the more it improves and I have less pain.”

Calhoun is one of the lucky ones. Back pain has sent hundreds of thousands down a path that has led to a physical addiction to opioid painkillers — drugs such as Percocet, Vicodin, OxyContin, Demerol, Dilaudid, fentanyl and morphine. They’re great at masking pain, but they’re also highly addictive. Patients commonly build a tolerance, and with the the crackdown in recent years on prescribing opioids, those who are already addicted have turned to street drugs such as heroin.

The state of Illinois has experienced one of the highest increases (8 percent) of overdose deaths in the country, many of which are opioid-related.

Physical therapy is a way to fix the pain before surgery and without masking it with medications, which can hide the root cause and keep a patient from being motivated to perform the exercises that can relieve the pain.

John Furrey, HSHS St. Mary’s Hospital Pain Medicine Center of Central Illinois director, said physical therapy has become the No. 1 option for pain.

“The WHO (World Health Organization) came up with pyramid, and they recommend interventions like physical therapy as the first line,” Furrey said. “There’s hardly a patient who comes through who doesn’t get referred to physical therapy for pain for back and leg pain.

“And physical therapy does seem to help. When you increase mobility, it can actually help joints lubricate themselves and allows tissues to move more freely and be more pliable.”

Brian Freund, an Athletico physical therapist based in St. Peters, Mo., said a therapist’s job is to provide education and exercises to increase mobility, strength and flexibility, and to, “facilitate a healing environment for whatever tissue is injured.”

“We live in a society that wants immediate results,” Freund said. “We work as a team with the physician to set realistic goals, to explain the healing process and establish how long it’s going to take.”

Furrey said most patients are at least initially responsive to physical therapy for pain management.

“Pain is a good convincer — people want their pain reduced and are willing to do anything you ask of them,” Furrey said.

Freund said he can usually convince patients to give him a shot.

“There are definitely people who are skeptical, usually because of experiences a friend or family member has shared,” Freund said. “But the research is clear. The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) recommend it as the first option for treatment and the risk is extremely low.

“I’ll say to people: Give me four to six visits. Give me an opportunity, because I know I can help.”

That was HSHS St. Mary’s Hospital physical therapist Karen Hill’s pitch to Calhoun, who considered surgery on her back.

Calhoun had been experiencing lower back pain and radicular symptoms — pain that runs down the leg from the spinal nerve root — for five or six years.

“I worked at a financial institution and sat all the time,” Calhoun said. “It was just one of those things you put up with — some days were worse than others — and I put up with it for years. There’s a lot of pain when you get older that you just deal with.”

Calhoun began physical therapy Jan. 5 and noticed an immediate difference. Hill said that’s common.

“Sometimes in physical therapy that happens — the pain immediately starts coming out of the leg,” Hill said. “I’ll have them do the exercises and ask them how much pain they have and they’ll say they don’t have any. And this will be after they’ve had pain for months straight, then all the sudden they don’t have it.

“I’ve had people with hip pain get sent to me and I’ll tell them it’s their back and they’ll say, ‘No, I need a new hip.’ Then they’ll go through the program and they won’t have the hip pain anymore.

“But then I’ll explain to them: As quickly as it comes out of there, it can come back. It’s their postural habits that are making the disc bulge and rupture.”

Most back pain is the result of repetitive stress, either lifting or sitting incorrectly.

“It’s not just picking up one thing or one incident, it’s repetitive,” Hill said. “We have more forces when we sit. And we’re in that bent position that causes the disc to start moving backwards.”

Hill said the philosophy of physical therapy for back pain is to force the disc off the nerve root.

“We use exercises to try to physically force the disc back in,” Hill said. “What we do is try to push it in and have patients maintain good posture. When we bend forward, that disc has a tendency to move back and it keeps going through the outer rings until it ruptures. We’re trying to prevent rupturing and trying to get that bulge back in.”

Hill said the exercises focus on extension, which work well with relieving radicular symptoms. The main exercise is the press-up, in which the patient gets in the push-up position, relaxes their lower half and lifts their head and chest to create a curve in the lumbar spot.

“I’ll have them do those press-ups at home every two hours to start out with,” Hill said. “As they graduate and abolish the pain, they don’t have to do them as much.”

Hill said the motion can be done while standing, but lying on the belly is more effective. Hill said walking is also good for lower back and radicular pain.

“Walking is also an extension,” Hill said. “The back has poor blood supply, and moving is how it nurses itself. That’s why you have to keep moving. If you don’t, you get stiff, then you get more pain.”

Hill said there are times that it’s too late for physical therapy — “When the capsule around the disc has gotten so stretched that we can’t keep it in,” Hill said. But even after surgery, physical therapy can help patients get pain-free faster and, in turn, get off opioids faster.

“There are lots of times we’ll get referrals from our back surgeon post-surgery to help the patient tone it up and teach them good posture — how to sit, how to stand and how to lift — to prevent any further problems,” Hill said.

Freund said physical therapy is more effective when started early: Don’t wait for the pain to become unbearable to report it to a doctor.

“Any injury, if left untreated, can advance into chronic pain,” Freund said. “If you’re having any back pain, early treatment and early intervention are the key. If you get it treated early, you can prevent it from becoming chronic pain.”



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For pain sufferers, physical therapy offers treatment without opioids | Local


DECATUR — Sandy Calhoun didn’t want to have surgery, and she definitely didn’t want to take prescription pain medications.

Calhoun would pop an Advil when her lower back pain got too bad, but for many years she, “just kind of dealt with it.”

Finally, after a car accident, she had an X-ray. The accident didn’t do any damage, but the X-ray showed some signs of joint disease in her lower back.

Surgery was an option, but Calhoun opted to try physical therapy. So far, it’s working.

“I could tell a difference quickly,” Calhoun said. “And the more I do, the more it improves and I have less pain.”

Calhoun is one of the lucky ones. Back pain has sent hundreds of thousands down a path that has led to a physical addiction to opioid painkillers — drugs such as Percocet, Vicodin, OxyContin, Demerol, Dilaudid, fentanyl and morphine. They’re great at masking pain, but they’re also highly addictive. Patients commonly build a tolerance, and with the the crackdown in recent years on prescribing opioids, those who are already addicted have turned to street drugs such as heroin.

The state of Illinois has experienced one of the highest increases (8 percent) of overdose deaths in the country, many of which are opioid-related.

Physical therapy is a way to fix the pain before surgery and without masking it with medications, which can hide the root cause and keep a patient from being motivated to perform the exercises that can relieve the pain.

John Furrey, HSHS St. Mary’s Hospital Pain Medicine Center of Central Illinois director, said physical therapy has become the No. 1 option for pain.

“The WHO (World Health Organization) came up with pyramid, and they recommend interventions like physical therapy as the first line,” Furrey said. “There’s hardly a patient who comes through who doesn’t get referred to physical therapy for pain for back and leg pain.

“And physical therapy does seem to help. When you increase mobility, it can actually help joints lubricate themselves and allows tissues to move more freely and be more pliable.”

Brian Freund, an Athletico physical therapist based in St. Peters, Mo., said a therapist’s job is to provide education and exercises to increase mobility, strength and flexibility, and to, “facilitate a healing environment for whatever tissue is injured.”

“We live in a society that wants immediate results,” Freund said. “We work as a team with the physician to set realistic goals, to explain the healing process and establish how long it’s going to take.”

Furrey said most patients are at least initially responsive to physical therapy for pain management.

“Pain is a good convincer — people want their pain reduced and are willing to do anything you ask of them,” Furrey said.

Freund said he can usually convince patients to give him a shot.

“There are definitely people who are skeptical, usually because of experiences a friend or family member has shared,” Freund said. “But the research is clear. The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) recommend it as the first option for treatment and the risk is extremely low.

“I’ll say to people: Give me four to six visits. Give me an opportunity, because I know I can help.”

That was HSHS St. Mary’s Hospital physical therapist Karen Hill’s pitch to Calhoun, who considered surgery on her back.

Calhoun had been experiencing lower back pain and radicular symptoms — pain that runs down the leg from the spinal nerve root — for five or six years.

“I worked at a financial institution and sat all the time,” Calhoun said. “It was just one of those things you put up with — some days were worse than others — and I put up with it for years. There’s a lot of pain when you get older that you just deal with.”

Calhoun began physical therapy Jan. 5 and noticed an immediate difference. Hill said that’s common.

“Sometimes in physical therapy that happens — the pain immediately starts coming out of the leg,” Hill said. “I’ll have them do the exercises and ask them how much pain they have and they’ll say they don’t have any. And this will be after they’ve had pain for months straight, then all the sudden they don’t have it.

“I’ve had people with hip pain get sent to me and I’ll tell them it’s their back and they’ll say, ‘No, I need a new hip.’ Then they’ll go through the program and they won’t have the hip pain anymore.

“But then I’ll explain to them: As quickly as it comes out of there, it can come back. It’s their postural habits that are making the disc bulge and rupture.”

Most back pain is the result of repetitive stress, either lifting or sitting incorrectly.

“It’s not just picking up one thing or one incident, it’s repetitive,” Hill said. “We have more forces when we sit. And we’re in that bent position that causes the disc to start moving backwards.”

Hill said the philosophy of physical therapy for back pain is to force the disc off the nerve root.

“We use exercises to try to physically force the disc back in,” Hill said. “What we do is try to push it in and have patients maintain good posture. When we bend forward, that disc has a tendency to move back and it keeps going through the outer rings until it ruptures. We’re trying to prevent rupturing and trying to get that bulge back in.”

Hill said the exercises focus on extension, which work well with relieving radicular symptoms. The main exercise is the press-up, in which the patient gets in the push-up position, relaxes their lower half and lifts their head and chest to create a curve in the lumbar spot.

“I’ll have them do those press-ups at home every two hours to start out with,” Hill said. “As they graduate and abolish the pain, they don’t have to do them as much.”

Hill said the motion can be done while standing, but lying on the belly is more effective. Hill said walking is also good for lower back and radicular pain.

“Walking is also an extension,” Hill said. “The back has poor blood supply, and moving is how it nurses itself. That’s why you have to keep moving. If you don’t, you get stiff, then you get more pain.”

Hill said there are times that it’s too late for physical therapy — “When the capsule around the disc has gotten so stretched that we can’t keep it in,” Hill said. But even after surgery, physical therapy can help patients get pain-free faster and, in turn, get off opioids faster.

“There are lots of times we’ll get referrals from our back surgeon post-surgery to help the patient tone it up and teach them good posture — how to sit, how to stand and how to lift — to prevent any further problems,” Hill said.

Freund said physical therapy is more effective when started early: Don’t wait for the pain to become unbearable to report it to a doctor.

“Any injury, if left untreated, can advance into chronic pain,” Freund said. “If you’re having any back pain, early treatment and early intervention are the key. If you get it treated early, you can prevent it from becoming chronic pain.”

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Mount Carmel Physical Therapy Center offers new treatment


 

Mount Carmel Physical Therapy Center is pleased to announce the recent certification of Emy Adamos, OTR/L, CHT and Edwin Chu, PTA in IASTM ( Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization ) in Oklahoma City last month.

IASTM is a type of manual therapy treatment technique that involves the use of a specially designed stainless steel instrument to treat soft tissue dysfunctions.

The effects of IASTM include pain relief, increased flexibility and range of motion, and enhances recovery.

“When combined with corrective exercises, we get the brain to develop neuroplasticity with the new found range, and the brain thinks of it as normal motion,” Emy said.

IASTM can be use to treat plantar fasciitis, achilles tendinitis, IT band syndrome, shin splints, pain in back, hip, knee, neck or shoulder, carpal tunnel syndrome, DeQuervain’s Tenosynovitis, tennis elbow, and scars ( surgical or traumatic).

Emy said: “This technique can help in reducing tone/tension and adhesions/restrictions, improving mobility and therefore function.”

The clinic sees many fibromyalgia and back pain patients.

Edwin said: “ IASTM helps me detect and treat myofascial restrictions to improve range of motion, decrease pain, enhancing movement and function. IASTM is one way to “trick” the nervous system to decrease the pain and improve the way the patient moves.

Henry and Emy Adamos are the owners of Mount Carmel Physical Therapy Center which opened three years ago. Emy is an occupational therapist with an additional training as a certified hand therapist.

Edwin Chu, PTA joined the clinic in 2015. Edwin has an extensive background in out-patient therapy and aquatic therapy.

Mount Carmel Physical Therapy Center was recently voted second in the Harrison Daily Times Best of the Best therapy clinics. “We are very appreciate of our customers. Thank you for voting for us.”

Mount Carmel Physical Therapy Center is located at 197 S. Walmart Drive, across from Dollar Tree and Aaron’s. They offer a full range of physical therapy and occupational therapy services along with aquatic therapy and water aerobics. The phone number is (870) 204-6070.



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KinesioActiv Physical Therapy offers new treatments on Lake Tahoe’s South Shore


Injuries are all too common when living in an outdoor mecca such as Lake Tahoe. Bones are broken, muscles are torn and bodies are under extreme stress when you’re out on the mountain giving it 110 percent. And treatment offerings recently expanded — KinesioActiv Physical Therapy welcomed its first client in September 2016 and the business has steadily grown.

Based in Zephyr Cove, KinesioActiv specializes in orthopedic care, empowering individuals to remain healthy, happy and active.

“I treat the spine, neck and back pain, headaches — I’m a certified orthopedic clinical specialist, a movement professional. Whether it’s back pain or hip pain, I treat the whole body from head to toe,” founder and primary clinician Warren Womack said. He opened the practice with 12 years of physical therapy experience to expose the region to his company’s unique services.

A typical session includes 50 minutes to an hour of one-on-one time with Womack, who provides corrective exercises for clients through the Mackenzie Method, which promotes the body’s potential to repair itself. The method teaches pain-reducing movement and posture techniques, creating an experience known as “movement as medication,” according to Womack.

“It’s a different level of experience than people may receive outside of corporate, hospital-based facilities. It’s more catered to the individual client in an individualized experience,” he explained.

Another unique aspect of KinesioActiv is its use of dry needling, a technique similar to acupuncture and involves targeting neurological pathways where people have pain associated with the nervous system.

“We use a thin monofilament needle and insert it into tight, restricted tissues of the body to reduce pain in targeted areas of muscle spasms, and its function is to improve a person’s condition,” Womack said.

The technique uses a “dry” needle — one without medication — and inserts it into trigger points to break the pain cycle. The practice, of which Womack says he is the first on South Shore to utilize, has its basis in Western medicine, whereas acupuncture’s background is in Chinese medicine.

KinesioActiv pricing varies based on type of injury and treatment needed.

“I offer what I term a ‘discovery session,’ where I have an initial 20-30 minutes that are complimentary for the individual — to come in and learn about their condition and concerns.

“I do a sampling of an examination with a little bit of treatment, so if people want to experience and try dry needling, I offer a session to get an idea of it,” Womack said.

KinesioActiv Physical Therapy is located at 100 McFaul Way, Suite B3. Learn more about the practice online at http://www.kinesioactiv.com.



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