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I tried really hard to make this shorter, but honestly, I could have written pages and pages and not fully expressed just what Molly has meant to me and my life! So this is the shortest I could come up with! Testimonial: When I first met with Molly, I was weary after 8 years of navigating neurologists, rheumatologists, and hospitals, going through endless cycles of diagnosis, then undiagnosis, and ultimately dismissal. Out of exhaustion and repeated defeat of trying to find someone who would listen and believe me and symptoms, I had resigned myself to live my life on the sidelines as best as I could. My primary doctor offered to refer me to the Mayo Clinic for answers, but I was done with specialists. My fragile wounded soul could take no more. My first appointment with Molly, I was met with kindness, validation, and the best listening I had experienced in 8 years. Years of specialists had taught me to compartmentalize my complex medical history and only present the pieces that were relevant to that clinician’s specialty. Attempts to try and present the whole picture always led to a referral to an additional specialist. So I was surprised to find that Molly wanted to hear the whole story, and even better, she was not intimidated or overwhelmed by the whole story. I kept expecting her to try and wrap me up and move me out the door, but one of the greatest gifts APT gives their clients is unhurried time to tell their stories and the time needed to accomplish their goals. I left that first appointment with a flicker of hope. Over the following weeks and months, Molly patiently helped restore my faith in medicine, and most importantly, restored my trust in my own body that had seemed to betray me for years. Through Molly’s steadfast guidance, I’m now living the life that I didn’t even dare to dream of, thinking it was not possible for me. For patients stuck in the cycle of medical gaslighting, lack of answers and solutions, I cannot recommend Molly and APT strongly enough! Sometimes I grieve the 8 years I lost, when practical real solutions to my real problems were available, but ultimately I’m overwhelmed with the gratitude for the life I’m now living, which I couldn’t have accessed without Molly as my guide!
I went to five other physical therapists…..
Before seeing Molly, I went to five other physical therapists (two traditional, three specialist) over the course of two years. All of them seemed to help at first, but then my symptoms would return and I'd be back where I'd started, or even worse. A friend recommended Molly. I have only mild scoliosis and didn't think my issue was postural, but figured it was worth a try. I am SO glad I did!
Molly deeply listens and problem solves with a fresh and open mind at each session. Using techniques from multiple systems, she peels back layers of compensation patterns to locate the root cause of symptoms. It is not a fast approach, but the results have been hugely transformative and lasting.
When COVID hit right in the middle of my treatment plan, I panicked, thinking "How can you possibly do Telehealth PT?". Surprisingly, we made even more progress! Because Molly could observe exercises and movement in my natural environment, with the props and equipment I actually used, she was able to troubleshoot, adjust exercises and offer better suggestions for my daily ergonomics (chairs, computer usage, stroller, bicycle, stairs, etc.) It was the perfect integration.
Thanks to Molly, pain is no longer an unavoidable daily companion. Not only has my physical health improved, so has my outlook on life. I very highly recommend her!!
I learned I was not walking properly
I went to and orthopedic doctor who diagnosed my pain as a torn hamstring. At Advance PT I learned I was not walking properly and was very asymmetrical. Molly taught me how to walk correctly and she gave me exercises to do which improved my strength and stability. Molly introduced me to balloon breathing which made a significant difference in how much pain I was feeling. Molly focuses on details and through her analysis of what I was feeling and what I could do, she believed I had torn my obturator tendon. We focused on that area and I quickly felt better. Molly is incredible. She is extremely knowledgeable and truly cares about how I was feeling. She increased my strength in my left hip and recommended shoes which also helped me walk properly. Molly is patient and takes the time to explain and illustrate the exercises. I fully trusted her and knew she wanted me to feel better. Molly has an incredible understanding of how the body works. Molly's personality makes you feel comfortable and at ease. I highly recommend Molly because of her attention to detail, her expansive knowledge, and her wonderful and caring personality.
I no longer have to live with pain everyday
I have worked with Molly Miller for three months for help with a lifelong scoliosis and spinal fusion. The exercises have been successful from the start in that I no longer have to live with pain everyday. Molly is coaching me in how to sit, stand and walk in ways that do not worsen my back problem. I understand how my body works much better thanks to her instruction. I look forward to building strength in coming months now that I can exercise again in a safe way.
I thought I would need “hands-on” help
A friend of a friend recommended APT for therapy for my scoliosis as she was very happy with the therapy she received for her scoliosis. Because of COVID-19, my sessions have all been through teletherapy. I was skeptical about the effectiveness of this method of communicating because I thought I would need "hands-on" help in performing the exercises with the proper form. I was also skeptical that PT alone would help me much with my posture and lower back pain. Surprise! Jean Masse was able to observe and coach me to overcome all my errors in form and push me through the steadily more difficult exercises I was taught over several weeks. Although I am about half way to my graduation, I already see a much more straight posture and have much less stiffness and pain in my lower back. I cannot thank Jean enough for coaching me through this transformative process.
Critical Scoliosis Treatment Continues with Teletherapy
When the March quarantine hit, just as all other non-essential workers, we had to quickly adjust our schedules, cancel appointments, and for the safety of all, lock ourselves in as much as possible. These canceled appointments included the incredibly important physical therapy sessions with Lisa at Advance PT for my daughter's scoliosis. But this was not for long. After we missed one session, Lisa contacted us to see if we would be interested in teletherapy sessions via video. We haven't looked back since. The teletherapy sessions are fantastic. They are just as organized and clear and useful as in-person appointments; also, through these teletherapy sessions I am learning more about my daughter's condition as I am eagerly listening and facilitating the sessions. Doing the exercises and working with Lisa in our own home exercise space has helped our daughter do her exercises much better and more efficiently, since there is no need to change/adjust an exercise from the office
setting to our own. Lisa has also been able to use our home space (and even our stairs!) in order to add new exercises that fit it. All in all, we are very thankful that we were able to continue our daughter's physical therapy during this time. With the multitude of decisions that
we now have to make every time we have to go out, I am extremely thankful that teletherapy sessions eliminate this stress while continuing to provide the same amount of great care and treatment that we always receive at Advance Physical Therapy in Chapel Hill!
Beth really excels in appreciating the “whole person” (in Personal Training)
Working on personal training practices with Beth Elder has been pure pleasure—even though COVID has interrupted the way we normally do personal training sessions. No more direct observation and interaction, alas. Now, it’s all via Zoom. I was dubious at first, but now, despite the occasional technical glitch, it seems to be working out.
Beth put together a personal training program for me that emphasizes upper body strengthening, balance, and some attention to the hips. I am doing more focused hip exercises with her colleague Joe, a physical therapist at Advance Therapy. They collaborate on best exercises and review my progress. I’ve been in recovery from a broken hip, and this combination seems to be very effective at getting me back to a more resilient physical condition.
Besides organizing a good personal training program for me, Beth has been wonderfully supportive and positive, keeping my spirits up when I doubt my progress. She has helped me increase strength, but is careful about not moving too fast, being mindful of any undue pressure on my hip. I am totally confident about her training; my sense is that her professional training and experience are bolstered by an intuitive understanding of the body and how it improves
Beth is also just an all-around lovely person to work with. She is very organized about appointments and easily accessible by phone or email if I have any questions or concerns. Over the years, I have worked with many excellent trainers, but Beth really excels in appreciating the “whole person,” and in providing just the right balance of guidance and support.
Expert instruction over ZOOM, just the same as in person
When the pandemic shut everything down, I was unsure how doing personal training over ZOOM would work and whether it would be as good as in person. I am very pleased it my personal training sessions with Beth Elder. I get her expert and excellent instruction just the same as in person and she continues to keep on schedule. Fortunately, I have a lot of exercise equipment but I don't have the widest variety of weights. So far, I'm not handicapped by that. My only complaint is being tired of my spare bedroom/workout room and will be glad to get out of the house one of these days.
Beth Elder is a GEM (We Know!)
Beth Elder is a superb personal trainer in every aspect. She is very throughout in her interview, clearly invested in knowing one's goals, experiences with exercise, medical issues, etc. Safety is of utmost concern for her. She is incredibly positive and enthusiastic and supportive. Beth checks in regularly about how I am feeling physically and emotionally and makes adjustments as needed. She has a wealth of knowledge about exercises and therapies that are appropriate. We have had no problem transitioning from in-person training to Zoom during the pandemic. We have had a great connection, computer-wise, and I am able to position my computer for Beth to see both standing and floor exercises very clearly. She amazingly picks up how I am doing and seems to be able to see even the slightest changes in my positioning, posture, breathing, etc. Although I miss seeing her in person, I feel that my training and progress have not suffered at all. I look forward to our sessions each time! Beth is very communicative with emails about scheduling, reminding, preparing me for our session. She is truly a gem!
Beth keeping it fresh and fun on ZOOM!
Beth has been a lifesaver during this time of pandemic and social distancing. She has helped me keep my exercise program fresh and fun! I'm amazed at how adept she is at spotting alignment, tweaking muscle engagement and offering suggestions - all over ZOOM! I look forward to my weekly hour with Beth.
Going from in-person to Zoom workouts due to the pandemic was an easy transition
Zoom personal training with Beth Elder is fun, effective, and convenient. When it’s time for my appointment, I set up my laptop, move back the furniture, and get ready to move. Going from in-person to Zoom workouts due to the pandemic was an easy transition.
In only a few months, I developed strength, flexibility, and banished back pain. Even walking trails around Chapel Hill became easier for this retiree.
Beth makes such good use of the zoom hour. A total professional, she keeps me moving the whole time, pushing me as hard as I want to be pushed. Ever alert, she guides my posture and technique. Throughout the hour, she asks how I’m doing, adjusting the workout as needed. Beth tailors the routines to my needs, updating the workout to keep it fresh and challenging. Highly recommended!
Teletherapy for Scoliosis
As a result of my deteriorating posture my chiropractor recommended Advance Physical Therapy for Postural Restoration. I am a 75 year old woman and had developed a pattern that made it difficult for me to stand with good posture. I began seeing Molly in late February, 2020 and had two appointments at the clinic until COVID-19 closed everything down. In April, Molly and I began Telehealth appointments via Zoom. We have met five times using Zoom and it has worked out very well. Molly has been able to see me do the exercises in my home environment and tailor them to fit my space as needed. After each Telehealth appointment, she sends an email with detailed notes of what we covered and how to do each new exercise or modification of current exercises, which is very helpful!
Molly has taken the time to get to know and understand my physical needs and concerns. She thoroughly understands how the human body works and how to improve and strengthen weaknesses. She welcomes feedback on the exercises she has suggested and works with me to make them more effective. After seeing x-rays of the curve of my spine, Molly modified my exercises to address unevenness I have between the right and left sides of my back to help reduce pain and improve my symptoms.
I heartily recommend Molly Miller as an excellent physical therapist with great people skills! Because of Molly's proficiency as a physical therapist, I have increased lower back and pelvic strength along with the skills to help me become stronger and more able to stand upright as I age. As a result of her people skills, I have someone I can work with to move forward with my treatment.
Teltherapy “has been a miracle”
I was waiting on an available appointment at Advance PT when the Covid-19 restrictions were applied. Some old pains had come back and I was in need. I then discovered that Molly was willing to do virtual visits. I was not sure how it would work , but I needed help!
Well, it has been a miracle for me. I have been able to make the same kind of progress as if I were visiting in the office. I have always known that the physical therapist at Advance PT were capable, but it is amazing the over Zoom Molly can assess my progress and teach me new exercises.
After each appointment she send me notes on modifications on exercises that we have discussed during our "visit" and instructions on the new exercises. I am doing much better and never had to drive to Chapel Hill. I could get used to this!
Teletherapy effective and helpful
I had a good experience receiving physical therapy via telehealth with
Nancy. I was only able to have 2 sessions because of unforeseen
complications, but the sessions I had were useful and tailored to my
needs. Nancy was able to give me clear, specific instructions and
demonstrations via teletherapy and although I can't compare it to having
therapy in person because I don't have any previous PT experience, I
found it to be effective and helpful. Nancy was wonderful about
following up and sending me exercise instructions with photo
demonstrations via email after each session, as well as check-in emails
between sessions to see how I was doing with the exercises. I recommend
giving PT via teletherapy a try.
PT via ZOOM
I have been working with Molly for at least three years related to chronic back pain and now due to the COVID 19, we are working via ZOOM. I am not a technical person, but have found this to be a special way of having our PT sessions. We are able to go over exercises by moving the computer as needed. Molly's kindness, her concern, thoughtfulness and knowledge are very comforting and encouraging.
Teletherapy can produce results!
I began meeting with Molly through teletherapy in April. Teletherapy really works for me, especially since Molly is creative and patient while trying to diagnose and correct my problems. Molly has gone out of her way to deliver truly personalized care. Not only does she always explain the why behind the exercises she prescribes, but she also encourages learning from my end, carefully answering all of my questions to make sure that I am confident with the process. What started as work to help end foot pain that prevented me from undertaking daily exercise has morphed into a more thorough understanding on my part of how my entire skeletal and muscular system work together. I find Molly's concern with holistic health and wellness, where physical health directly affects emotional well-being, incredibly refreshing and unique among therapists. I have worked with several physical therapists over the years and Molly stands alone as the most attentive, responsive, and capable PT to date. My interaction with Molly has convinced me that telehealth can produce results. I still have work to do, but I haven't had foot pain in almost three months!
Teletherapy sessions wonderful and fruitful!
Being able to continue my physical therapy appointments with Molly during the COVID 19 crisis has been unconditionally wonderful and fruitful. Molly is as skilled on Zoom as she is in the office. Her sense of humor and warmth are not affected by the physical distance between us. In fact, teletherapy offers an optimal environment because neither of us wears a mask and Molly is a good guide for using the technology. I appreciate her consistent optimism about my ability to progress as she modifies the exercises I practice. Molly’s reaching out to a colleague for consultation exemplifies her professionalism and resourcefulness.
PT for Severe Lower Back Pain
Molly's expertise, kindness, ability to listen and inform were keys to my recovery from very significant lower back pain. I was quite discouraged when I started working with her almost 2 years ago, but her grasp of the musculoskeletal relationships of the human body led to well-targeted and very helpful interventions. Consequently, I can not only reduce my pain significantly with exercises but am back to enjoying long, vigorous walks and can enjoy physical activities I had given up. She has been of invaluable help and it has been a joy to work with her.
We love working with Lisa and the staff. We have been coming weekly for 4 years for my daughter's scoliosis. We are thrilled with the experience and the results. We strongly recommend!
Older Patients Getting Fit with Staying Safe with Guided Exercises
I had worked with Beth Elder as a personal trainer in the past and have had the pleasure of reconnecting with her at Advance Physical Therapy. At this location we've worked on both personal training and Pilates instruction. She is phenomenal. As an older woman, I need someone who can recognize my limitations and give me guidance on how to best achieve my goals. Beth never fails to come up with safe, effective and challenging exercises for me that I can actually DO! And in the process she is my personal cheerleader, always pointing out the positive and helping me be less hard on myself. My ability to work on my strength, balance and conditioning are (and have always been) directly related to whether I am working with Beth. She always makes me a stronger person!
Beth Elder: Treasure of the Triangle!
The Triangle has many hidden treasures - one of the is Beth Elder,
Personal Trainer, Pilates Instructor, ChiWalking & ChiRunning
certified. Beth works with the sophisticated and successful Postural
Restoration elements at Advance Physical Therapy next to Whole Foods
in Chapel Hill.
Beth’s training sessions and classes are highly effective and a
great pleasure: both at the same time. Beth combines a wonderful
sense of humor with flawless and clear instruction. It continues to
be an excellent experience to access my whole body’s strength and
Neck Pain, Back Pain, and Hip Pain. . .
“After over 25 years of chronic neck, back and hip pain, I had not considered the possibility that there was a therapeutic course left that could address any of these issues. My quality of life had been significantly altered as my symptoms worsened through the years. I had been to both traditional and non- traditional practitioners in many cities that could only provide a temporary fix – and not to all aspects simultaneously.
Through Postural Restoration I have truly received a “lifeline”. As a result of the very personalized program designed to address my specific and changing needs, I have achieved a level of physical comfort and stability that I couldn’t have imagined was possible. Through this therapy I have been taught an awareness of what has created the problems, why a particular approach should be taken and how to be an active participant in resolving my pain. Through Advance Physical Therapy and Holistic Health, I have been provided with pain resolution, maintenance of issues and a program for strengthening and gaining back the active lifestyle I had.
I am so thankful that I am now able to resume activities which I would not have considered undertaking just a short time ago. I cannot speak highly enough about the results I have achieved, and am very grateful for, through Postural Restoration.”
Could not walk without severe pain…
I could not walk without severe pain radiating from my hip into severe knee pain when I started at Advance Physical Therapy. I was accurately diagnosed and started on a progressive treatment plan which resolved my pain. More important, my therapist (Jean Masse) took the time to help me develop and ongoing plan to maintain my newly found pain-free lifestyle. In the past, other physical therapists have helped me resolve my pain, but they did not assist me in developing a strategy to stay pain free. Advance Physical Therapy was an amazing experience for me.
“When I was 14 years old in 2006 my family and I found out that I had scoliosis. It means my spine is curved. It is sure that all spines have curves, however when there are abnormal side-to-side curves in the spine, it is called scoliosis. I learned that a curve is considered bad if it is greater than 25 to 30 degrees. My doctor said my curve was 37 degrees and recommended using a brace while sleeping. He also informed us that 45 degree is a critical degree for a surgery.
After knowing a brace and surgery are all treatments in a hospital, my mother started researching about scoliosis. She wanted to know any treatment for my scoliosis. My mom took me to chiropractic and physical therapy. We chose to keep going with physical therapy because we believed that it would be better to make the muscles stronger, instead of cracking my bones in place. The stronger muscles will finally push my spine and straighten it.
For half of a year I had used a brace while sleeping, and I had done special Postural Restoration exercises taught by my physical therapist. However, in April 2007 my curve turned out 42 degrees. My doctor warned my family and me if the curvature exceeded 45 degrees at the next visit, we would need to seriously consider a surgery. He said he would put metal rods next to my spine to straighten it in an operation.
My mom, my physical therapist, and I discussed about this situation and decided to try hard one more time. Three of us have worked hard together and especially my physical therapist has been wonderful. She has kept encouraging me and has been cautious about my situation. She always helped me.
Finally, I took an x-ray again at my hospital in September 2007, and my curve was 29 degree. It was even better than my first degree (37 degree). The option of the surgery was out of topic. My doctor came to measure the curve of my spine again and again because it was not normal. Usually the curve tends to go worse and worse. He said the measurement of truncation is also better. He finally concluded the brace worked very well. However, we don’t think so. The exercises taught by my physical therapist have worked well for me.”
Scoliosis. . .
” I must admit, that I was more than a little skeptical of postural restoration when I first heard about it. I had heard claims of non-surgical ways of arresting the progress of scoliosis, but frankly didn’t believe these claims. My orthopedist had only told me about very invasive surgical correction for my progressing scoliosis. He believed the condition of my spine was responsible for the shoulder, hip, and back pain that had visited me intermittently for many years.
One day, a friend, whose advice I respect greatly, referred me to Advance Physical Therapy. Because I didn’t want to take time from work and assume the risks associated with surgery, I decided to give it a try. Also, I work hard at my daily fitness program, and was afraid surgery would temporarily, if not permanently, affect my ability to reap the rewards of such a program.
My physical therapist graduated me through many very unusual exercises, which I did twice a day for a year. At first I was still skeptical, as these were very different from exercises I had been given by other physical therapists. However, my pain began to subside quickly, so I continued with the program. Now, not only am I pain free, but x-rays performed by my orthopedist show no progression over the past year.
I highly recommend postural restoration, especially to any one who is considering surgery to correct posture-related discomfort.”
Chronic Pain and Postural Restoration…
“Thirty plus years of chronic pain. Surgeries that made things worse. Fibromyalgia. Physical therapists either helped very little or exacerbated two things while trying to fix a third thing. I spent a year with a hypnotherapist trying to achieve pain control with no success. I took Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction classes trying to accept pain with… well, mindfulness. No good. None of it any good.
I was not particularly hopeful about postural restoration.
My daughter, who lives on the other side of the country, told me about this fairly new thing and suggested I find someone locally. I really dragged my heels. I was recovering from heart surgery and had never fully recovered from back surgery. The exercises prescribed for strengthening my heart were playing merry hell with my sciatica. My life was revolving around pain day and night and I wasn’t having any fun, nope, none at all.
On top of the pain, I had come out of heart surgery with a partially paralyzed diaphragm. Exercise not only was painful but I could barely breathe.
I tried Google, searching ‘postural restoration’ and found a place in nearby Chapel Hill. I put off calling. My daughter nagged. She had heard more good things. Okay, okay, I finally made an appointment.
Then I met the therapist of Advance Physical Therapy. She listened patiently as I listed all my ailments and explained to her why she couldn’t possibly help me. “Let’s just try this.” she said. As she measured and evaluated the movement of my limbs, she explained how Postural Restoration works. I was not fully convinced but made two more appointments to come back.
It has been about six months now. I walk without a limp. I climb stairs upright instead of hauling myself up hand over hand using the railing. I walk down stairs casually and without fear of falling. I go for long spells without thinking of pain every minute instead if pain constantly pushing all other thoughts away. I still have sciatica, but it is no longer the most controlling factor in my life. Now I can sit at a table and enjoy meals with my friends and family or watch an entire movie without having to get up and walk around the lobby to ease pain in my leg and back. I’ve come a long way from spending days in bed because it was too painful to sit or stand or walk.
Postural Restoration is working for me. I’ve learned a different way of standing and sitting and do a few simple exercises each day. A great depth of thought and understanding of the body and how all its parts work together are behind this. Not everything we’ve tried has worked, it’s true. But every body is different and every time something does not work it gives the therapist new information and we are able to go on. I’ve come to appointments saying I was in too much pain to do anything and she listens carefully and says, “Let’s just try this.” And usually by the time I leave the clinic I am in much less pain – even feeling pretty darn good. After 30 years, ‘good’ is something I never thought I’d ever feel again. “
Knee Pain …
“My experience at Advance Physical Therapy has been excellent. The decision to consult there was one of the best I’ve ever made for myself. The therapist listened to me and evaluated my walk in ways no other health professional ever has. While the work to correct my gait is very hard work, I have much less pain when walking, a better appreciation for how my body works, and greater ease in the activities of daily life.”
Postural Restoration Exercises…
I have to say that I think Advance Physical Therapy, with the Postural Restoration approach, is fabulous. I have had many body workers over the years, but at Advance Physical Therapy they have the tools to help me get to the fundamental problems unlike Rolfing or Yoga or continuum or chiropractic ever did. The exercises are hard, but I do them every day – even weekends! – because I can feel that they are helping so much.
The constant pain I was having is much improved, although it is easy enough to set things off still. Sometimes, if I don’t quite have an exercise down correctly, I can aggravate the problem, but the therapist always seems to figure out what I am doing wrong and helps me correct it.
I never dreamed that it would take this much work and time to deal with this situation, but I am thrilled to be on the path of restoration. I think I would have been running into some big trouble down the road had I not found such a skilled and knowledgeable therapist to help me with this. They have helped me to better understand the mechanics of my problem, which only heightens my consciousness about it and enables me to be more aware of how I move in the world. This is a good thing!
61 Year Old Female with Scoliosis
I have been working with Susan Henning since the autumn of 2010. I am a 61 year old female whose scoliosis was diagnosed at the age of ten during a pediatric check up. I was most fortunate to avoid back surgery since my spinal growth stopped at about twelve years old. I was left with an “S” curve, left lumbar and right thoracic in good balance. Throughout my life, I have been inconsistently active, especially with regard to exercise because of my repetitive crash and burn pattern. Just as I would achieve some level of tone, strength, and cardiovascular conditioning, my back or a leg, or hip would start hurting, become inflamed and I would stop all activity in order to heal. My healing processes required months, despite whatever relief modalities I used. These included anti-inflammatory, over the counter and some prescription medications, icing, bandaging, bracing, physical therapy, deep tissue massage, energy work. Ultimately I spent more time not doing anything than doing.
My first contact with a Postural Restoration (PR) therapist was different. The therapist actually knew how to diagnose what type of scoliosis I had through a simple movement pattern. All previous therapist nodded their heads, they knew scoliosis, they understood it was quite asymmetrical and then proceeded to have me do activities that were symmetrical. If each side of the body of a person with scoliosis is different, then the symmetrical exercise will overload one side due to the opposite side’s inability to perform comparably. All the years of running, using treadmills or elliptical machines, or free weights or home gyms required bilateral activities that inevitably overloaded my “good” side and then the pain would start.
My PR therapists have understood what parts of my body need to be built up. The process has been quite slow. I came into this new approach over four years ago with a curve that was progressing to 60 degrees. I had experienced a pinched nerve, was feeling tingling in my rib hump, left side and have been struggling with right leg pain due to a tilted pelvis. The pinched nerve has not recurred, the rib tingling is completely gone and gradually I am building to muscle tone to correct the pelvic tilt. Most importantly, I am able to walk again! I was always a walker, able to go for and hour or more on weekends. I stopped walking about five years ago and have been attempting to return to a consistent practice. I am seeing real hope for the first time in many, many years.
Susan Henning is the finest therapist I have had in my life. Not only does she listen, she is passionate about my improvement. What I see in PR is the capacity to troubleshoot effectively. If I am having pain when I come in to a session, Susan carefully assesses my neutrality and can always figure how I am out of alignment and then get me back into alignment. When I leave that session, I know exactly what exercise I need to do to either maintain alignment or restore it.
Through Postural Restoration I have received an education about my body, its compensations, weaknesses and am learning little by little how to reconnect and rebuild neurologically and muscularly. I am learning how to hold myself differently, whether standing, sitting or sleeping. For the first time, many of my back and belly muscles are starting to move with breathing and regaining some tone. I have to be diligent. If I let too many days go by without my core group of exercise, then old pain and scoliotic postures resurface once more. I would not and could not be where I am today without the PR therapist I have. At this point in time, I see myself continuing to increase my strength and capability because of the work Susan and I are doing together.
Scoliosis and Schroth Method of Exercises
C (13 yr old female) had a scoliosis upper curve of 51 degrees and lower one of 45 degrees in Jan 2013. Two top Ortho surgeons in Raleigh both recommended surgery ASAP. We felt that surgery for our 13 yr old should be the last resort. After much research, and a trip to the Northeast with a Schroth trained therapist, we decided to try intensive PT for C. We were excited that 2 therapists at Advance Physical Therapy in Chapel Hill became certified in the Schroth Method. C has been seeing Susan Henning since last May. Susan is knowledgeable, enthusiastic, encouraging, supportive, compassionate, dedicated to helping in many ways and always positive in guiding patients. C loves to go to see her for therapy! The fantastic news is that her recent x-ray – Aug ’13 showed the upper curve improved by decreasing down to 40 degrees and her lower curve to 35 degrees . C will continue to go and anticipates her scoliosis curves decreasing even more in the next few months! We are extremely pleased with the professional and caring treatment C has received each time at Advanced Physical Therapy. We highly recommend this practice and the Schroth based method of PT that they offer.
Orthopedic specialist was very surprised to see such an improvement (in x-rays) in a very short period of time…..
Mrs. Susan Henning at Advance Physical Therapy (Chapel Hill) is an outstanding professional. It is very rare these days to find such a dedicated health care provider who truly cares about well being of the patient. She is very knowledgeable in physical therapy, understands the important aspects of health issues and finds the way to successfully apply correct exercise based on patient’s individual needs. The results after Mrs. Henning’s therapy sessions showed a significant improvement on the x-rays. Orthopedic specialist was very surprised to see such an improvement in a very short period of time (10 sessions). I am driving 2 hour 45 minute to see Mrs. Henning for therapy and the time spent on the road worth every minute of each session! Besides her professionalism, Mrs. Henning is a very pleasant person, softly spoken, with great communication skills with patients. She spends extra time if needed to make sure that patient understands all the steps of the exercise. I was seeing many therapists before, but I can’t even compare Mrs. Henning’s level of professionalism to others. Staff at Advance Physical Therapy is very welcoming, and sends reminders on time for follow up appointments. Office is very cozy, relaxed and clean. I highly recommend Mrs. Henning to anyone for physical therapy, Schroth method, and postural restoration. She is the best Physical Therapist anyone can wish for.
I got the Chi Running thing!
Monday is my Day Off, so I went for a run around the Carolina North Forest, two days after our (Chi Running) class on June 3.
I got it! I got the Chi Running thing! I would hesitate really even to call it "running". it was more like bobbing in place and somehow also going forward. I went an extra three miles because the running felt so good. And when I tried picking up the speed by leaning forward/letting my feet kick out behind me further, it felt great, like my body was doing something it should, like it felt like what I saw great runners doing. I ran hills entirely with my arms and changed nothing with my legs: that was a a huge change.
Incidentally, I have been running distance since I was 10; I have always had a strong toe push-off (which put me at a disadvantage in cross country when running through rain and mud); I was nationally ranked in cross country for a brief moment when I was 16. After years away from running, I started training again in the 2000's and in 2010 just got under a 90 minute half-marathon. And then....I tore my achilles tendon after a hard 14 mile run followed by 4 hours of walking around Manhattan.
I feel like I have been hobbled ever since, but Chi Running gives me new hope. Maybe I can run again...with joy? But it's unlike any kind of running I have ever done before: it's just bobbing place and somehow also moving forward.
Robert Fruehwirth - Chapel Hill
I wanted to say thank you again for the workshops. I really liked and enjoyed the sessions. I think that the chi running methods you taught in terms of breathing, how to move arms and legs, the body angles, and so on, really make sense in the light of running efficiently without unnecessary waste of the energy and injury possibilities.
More than anything, you are such a great instructor that can explain well each posture and why it is better than other postures. You didn't try to exaggerate the benefits of chi running at all. I liked your comments for each of us when you observe our running form in the practice time after each discussion, which helped me correct my own strange habits. Plus, I liked you to allow us to share what we think and feel like, by which I could learn a lot from others. Lastly, the sessions were really fun!!
I am sure the two sessions with you will have a huge impact on my lifetime running, even though I am not an awesome or marathon runner. I have been trying to get used to the entire form by combining each posture. I will update you about my experience with Chi running later!
Ju Hyun Kim - Chapel Hill
Physical Therapy For Breathing Problems
I contacted Advance Physical Therapy, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, in April of 2015 because I was experiencing (breathing problems) shortness of breath during normal activities and also during the night. The receptionist, Deana, arranged for me to meet with Dr. Jean Massé later that month for an evaluation and recommendations.
My initial appointment with Dr. Massé resulted in a thorough evaluation, a discussion of my concerns and a treatment plan. Because of the distance from my home to Chapel Hill, it was agreed that I would meet with Dr. Massé on a monthly basis for two hour visits.
I found Dr. Massé to be sensitive to my physical therapy needs and skillful in her approach. She seemed to know just when to encourage me as I learned the various exercises she had recommended and when to suggest specific areas where I might improve. She was professional and knowledgeable in her approach. As a result, a relaxed and productive learning experience was established from the start.
I also appreciated receiving timely and helpful emails from Deana, reminding me of dates and times of upcoming appointments.
My physical therapy lasted nine months. During that period my breathing became more efficient during normal daily activities. The nighttime shortness of breath (breathing problems) disappeared altogether.
I am well pleased with my experience at Advance Physical Therapy. I would highly recommend Dr. Massé to anyone in need of competent, professional, compassionate physical therapy services.
Physical Therapy After Hip Replacement
I had hip replacement at the end of the year, and after a month with Nancy Toole, PT my hip was stronger than it has been in years. Every session with Nancy challenged me to work harder and smarter as she targeted all the core muscles surrounding my repaired hip.
Her positive, pleasant demeanor contributed to y looking forward to our sessions. When I left the sessions, I was given a new, specifically targeted set of exercises that helped me continue to improve both my strength and my flexibility.
Personalized Attention After Shoulder Surgery
My experience at Advance Physical Therapy was not only healthy but very pleasant. The personalized attention that I received (after shoulder surgery) helped me greatly to recover in the time frames set. This personalized attention makes a difference from other places where I received therapy and medical care. Professionalism, knowledge and human sensitivity are the most conspicuous attributes that identify Nancy Toole. Nancy not only is limited to fulfill routines of physical movements; but gives a personalized attention to patients. During my therapy sessions, Nancy taught me to breathe properly and correct postures for a recuperation of my health. Nancy reflects clearly what it means “love to others”. She seeks that her patients recover their health in a disciplined manner, helping us to understand how to address areas for recovery.
Adult Manages Scoliosis and Kyphosis
I have a smaller thoracic curve and kyphosis as well. I have tried different physical therapists, acupuncture, massage and exercise but nothing worked for the pain I was experiencing or the progression of my curve. I felt helpless knowing that a very extensive surgery might be the only possible way to deal with this issue.
I had done some extensive research and found Schroth Therapy. I traveled from North Carolina to New York City to work with a therapist at the Hospital for Special Surgery Spine Clinic. After continued research I discovered Advance Physical Therapy in Chapel Hill , NC. Although I live two and a half hours away from this facility, Advance Physical Therapy had the only certified Schroth Therapists in the state of North Carolina.
Meeting Susan Henning PT, PRC was a life changer for me. She is not only certified in Schroth but also in Postural Restoration. I found that I required extensive work on my overall posture as well as the Schroth exercises to help with my problems. With her gentle manner, guidance, support and expertise, Susan taught me the exercises I required to gain control over my curve progression (kyphosis and scoliosis) and pain. Only having performed the exercise for four months, this is the first year that my curve did not progress.
I am forever indebted to Susan Henning for what she taught me. She is so passionate about what she does, is very thorough and cares deeply about you as her patient. I finally have a more positive outlook on my condition and plan to keep my scoliosis in check with the continued skilled help and guidance of Susan Henning.
I had my hip replaced at the end of the year, and after a month with Nancy my hip was stronger than it has been in years. Every session with Nancy challenged me to work harder and smarter as she targeted all the core muscles surrounding my repaired hip.
Her positive, pleasant demeanor contributed to y looking forward to our sessions. When I left the sessions, I was given a new, specifically targeted set of exercises that helped me continue to improve both my strength and my flexibility.
Hypermobility and Pain
A patient describes her problems related to hypermobility: "Until the latter part of 2009, I was a healthy, active 54 year old. I exercised daily and never had a serious issue of any kind. For no apparent reason, I began to have foot pain which led to hip pain and back pain and a decrease in function that was alarming to me. I started taking pain medication daily, saw a series of doctors and physical therapists who gave me exercises that I was unable to do, and only served to create more pain. After struggling for 2 years with no improvement, trying many things to treat my pain, and growing ever more desperate, I was referred to Advance Physical Therapy.
When I met Susan Henning, she assessed my situation and we began a journey that truly has changed my life. I learned I was hypermobile (hypermobility), had pelvic instability, and posturally had pretty much fallen apart. Through Postural Restoration, I learned exercises that would immediately help my pain and enable me to move better. Sometimes I did my exercises wrong and that would exacerbate my pain, but Susan always worked with me to explain what I should do or find an appropriate exercise to address the issue that I could do. There were days I arrived in pain and she would do whatever she could to help me. She kindly referred to me as sensitive, which is an understatement.
Slowly I improved, got stronger and eventually discontinued all pain medication. Although I still have small setbacks from time to time because I do too much, where I started and where I am now is like night and day. Postural Restoration is truly unique and has worked for me when everything else failed. I've learned so much and have many tools to help me going forward.
I cannot say enough, or recommend more highly, Advance Physical Therapy. Deana, in the office, is an absolute pleasure, she is always helpful with scheduling and anything else that may arise.
I will be forever grateful to Susan Henning. She is kind, patient, and incredibly knowledgeable. She helped me when it seemed no one else could and anyone would be lucky to have her as their physical therapist."