By Mark Yanai

What’s a WORC WOD?


It’s 6:00 am…the Kaneohe roosters are crowing, the sun still sleeping and it’s the perfect time for a workout. Your body is fully charged from a good night’s sleep and you can’t wait to get to W.O.R.C., not because you like to work but because you love W.O.R.C. (Windward Occupational Rehab Center) where every Thursday, a group of die hards meet before the crack of dawn to get in a WOD (Workout of the Day). It all started on New Year’s Eve of 2013 with a group of guys who wanted to get in one last workout before the end of the year. Since then, the group has evolved to whomever wants to show up at early in the morning and start the day with some good ‘ol sweat.

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The format of the WOD changes every week. You never know what you’ll end up doing when you walk through the door. It’s not crossfit, but a blend of functional exercises that include TRX, kettlebells, sandbags, sleds, pulleys, medicine balls, etc. The workouts are usually high intensity interval training (HIIT) with some form of competition. We always include the competitive part which usually gives everyone a little more motivation to push themselves.


The WOD means something different for everyone but the intent isn’t to lose weight or build muscle. The intent is to find out something about yourself. How do you control your emotions when you’re pushing yourself physically? How do you feel when you compete against others and especially, yourself? How much gratification do you get when you accomplish something as a team?

If you want to be a part of the WORC WOD, all you have to do is show up – Tuesdays, 6:00 am .  That’s the hardest part. Once you do, you’ll get to experience a great group of people who come together once a week and have a lot of fun.

By Mark Yanai

Valuing the Physical Therapist Assistant

Ross Suyemura, P.T.A., L.M.T., Stacey Hertzog, P.T.A., Jessie Dullaga, P.T.A., L.M.T.
Physical Therapist Assistants at W.O.R.C.

At F&L, we greatly value our Physical Therapist Assistants because they are essential to our operational model that consists of a special team of physical therapists, therapist assistants and massage therapists. We often meet as clinicians to share our treatment approach so that we can provide a well-rounded and comprehensive treatment to our patients. We believe all of our assistants possess competent skills as health care providers and have the utmost confidence in them to provide excellent care to our patients.

Unfortunately, the current trend in many outpatient therapy clinics in Hawaii is to provide care on a one-to-one basis by a physical therapist without the use of physical therapist assistants. More clinics are adapting to this model and marketing it as an approach that is more consistent and of higher value. Because of this new model, assistants are starting to be seen as lesser skilled clinicians to the general public and other healthcare professionals. Even the insurance companies are following suit and trying to dictate this model by reimbursing treatments based on who delivers the care.

However, this is a flawed view. As a physical therapist, I depend on my assistants to provide the same care to our patients as I would on a one-to-one basis. We enjoy having assistants as part of our team and fully support their profession. Other medical professions use a team approach including doctors and medical assistants, dentists and hygienists, and nurses and nurse aides.

Our organization also has a strong teaching culture where we provide opportunities for student internships from schools like Kapiolani Community College that have PTA programs. We have had many students come through our doors from these programs and are proud to say that more than half of the assistants employed by F&L are graduates of KCC.

Regardless of the day or time you are treated at any of our clinics, you can be assured that our staff is well trained. More than one pair of eyes on a patient provides a greater overall picture for optimal treatment. But beyond the technical skills that our assistants possess, the most important quality they all have is empathy. It’s a value that we look for in all our employees. It’s often said in the medical field that “people don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.” – John C. Maxwell

In addition to being knowledgeable in the physical therapy field, our assistants are unique in that they are able to incorporate their various backgrounds into their patient care. We are fortunate to have assistants that are licensed massage therapists, certified personal trainers or have been lifeguards and firefighters.

We recognize that our operational model of treatment is different than the current trend. We are a special company that follows our values and not trends. We stand by our employees and see great value in each and every one of them.


By Mark Yanai

2014 University of Hawai’i Strength Clinic

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This past weekend, I was lucky enough to attend the 2014 HAWAII STRENGTH COACHES CLINIC at the University of Hawai’i. The clinic is run by Tommy Heffernan, a member of the UH football and baseball teams from 1988 to 1991, who handles the overall operation of the strength and conditioning program at UH. David Woodward D.P.T., one of our physical therapists at F&L’s W.O.R.C. site, joined me for two days of lectures and presentations by some of the top strength and conditioning coaches in the U.S.

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Speakers included Robert Dos Remedios (Oregon State), Gary Beamer (Hawaii), Henry Ruggeirio (Univ. of Washington), Brian Neal (Univ. of Mississipi St.), Kari Woodall (Univ. of Wisconsin), and Patrick Ivey (Missouri). Each of these strength coaches brought their expertise and unique experiences to this outstanding clinic by educating coaches, medical professionals and athletic trainers on how to improve performance, decrease injuries, and gain a greater understanding of the importance of strength and conditioning.

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Also in attendance were Dr. Elizabeth Ignacio (IMUA Orthopedics) who spoke about injury prevention and Mike Skogg (Skogg Kettlebell) who talked about kettlebell training.

One of the highlights of the weekend listening the honorable Judge Kaulukukui Jr., who spoke about Hawaiian values and leadership. We were given the opportunity to meet him and we hope to get to know him better as we found out that he resides on the Windward side and also practices martial arts right next to our W.O.R.C. site at Kokokahi YWCA.

David and I look forward to implementing many of the concepts that we picked up this weekend and are already looking forward to attending next year’s clinic.

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By Mark Yanai

Northeastern University PT Student Co-Op with Fukuji & Lum

A big mahalo goes out to Co-Op students Matt and Maura for working with us these past 6 months. We wish them the best as they continue to pursue their physical therapy degrees.

Matt & Maura


We gladly welcome Jessica and Ariel, our newest C0-Op students, who will be with us for the next 6 months.

Jessica and Ariel

These students are part of our partnership with Northeastern University for the Cooperative Partnership Program. We are dedicated and committed to providing these students with the education and experience they need to work in the field of physical therapy.

Each year we accept outstanding NU physical therapy students as full-time employees and give them the opportunity to gain valuable work experience in an outpatient orthopedic clinical setting. These students will primarily assist our highly qualified physical therapists with outpatient care at our clinic locations in Honolulu and Windward Oahu, including the outdoor heated pool in beautiful Kaneohe.

The journey to Hawaii will offer students tremendous life-changing experiences as they strive to balance work, play and new discoveries during their 6 month Co-op with the Fukuji & Lum OHANA (family). Please welcome them with the “Aloha Spirit”.

By Deb Matsuura

Holiday Massage Special!

The holidays can be very tiresome on your body. Do you have sore feet from walking around the mall all day, back or neck stiffness from putting up the 1000 Christmas lights on your house and hand/wrist aches from using your computer mouse too long when buying gifts online? If you have one or all of these ailments, you definitely need to treat yourself to an hour of relief, relaxation and rejuvenation and get rid of those aches and pains.  Fukuji & Lum’s licensed massage therapists can help you feel better so you can enjoy the rest of your holidays!

Fukuji & Lum is currently running a massage special for a limited time only. We are offering two packages, the Nohona Package: 5 masages for $375 and the Ho’ola Package: 10 massages for $720. With the Ho’ola Package, you save a total of $80! That’s equal to one massage absolutely FREE

Please visit our Massage Therapy page for more information. You may contact us at our Kailua Clinic (261-4321) to see Lallie or our WORC site (234-5353) to see Ross. You must purchase the holiday special before Dec. 31, 2013. 


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By Mark Yanai

My Clinical Experience

IMAG1767 Lauren Palang, SPT from Northeastern University

* Lauren has been my student for the past three months. She is in her last year as a physical therapy student and just completed her internship with Fukuji & Lum last week. In this week’s blog, she writes about her experience with us at our WORC site. ~ Mark Yanai, MPT

Choosing a site for my internship was not the easiest task, but when I saw that I had an opportunity to carry out my second clinical education experience at Fukuji and Lum PT in Hawaii, I knew that choosing this site was a MUST! Working for F&L has been a great experience in every way possible. With the clinic being right on the bay, waking up early to get to work was a piece of cake. Imagining that the first day of my clinical was going to be nerve wrecking, I ended ended the day knowing that I would fit right in.

The site I chose is mainly a worker’s comp clinic, so I was not sure what to expect as I am unfamiliar with working in this type of setting. After a couple weeks, I realized it is no different than any of my past experiences. Throughout my time with F&L I have learned new manual techniques, various outlets to aid with therapeutic exercises, and my clinical reasoning has been challenged with different patient diagnoses. From a simple wrist strain to spinal surgery, the wide range of diagnoses has taught me a lot. Also, F&L’s work conditioning/work hardening program is one that I experienced here for the first time. It allowed for a great learning experience as it kept me on my toes with each patient’s plan of care. Since patients often stay for durations of two to fours hours, each session had to be switched up in order to keep the patient motivated and entertained with the goal of a work simulation type of session.

Beyond the educational realm of physical therapy, I have also learned a lot about the Hawaiian culture. From the insights of all my patients, whether they were true locals or born somewhere other than the islands, each and every patient was kind enough to share their stories and offer friendly advice about things to do and sites to see.

Overall being a part of the Fukuji and Lum Ohana and living on the island these past few months, has been nothing but amazing. My clinical instructors and the support staff did not miss a step on making my time at the clinic a continuous learning experience. I would recommend it to anyone who wants to learn from a great staff and live in paradise for a few months, to definitely take this opportunity as you wont regret it. This internship is one that I will never forget.


By Deb Matsuura

Aquatic Physical Therapy Program making a big splash at new pool!


F&L’s Aquatic Physical Therapy Program has officially moved to the Kokokahi YWCA pool. Aquatic Therapy treats most conditions and injuries, helping patients improve their balance, strength and flexibility through therapeutic exercises in the water.  The newly resurfaced pool is heated to 86-88 degrees and has a chair lift to accommodate those who need assistance entering the pool.

Come and check us out at the pool during the week:



Mon, Wed. 9:30am-11:30am

Tues, Thurs. 1:30pm-4:30pm

Fri. 8:30-11:30am





By Deb Matsuura

Congratulations “Donate to Win” Winners

CONGRATULATIONS to the winners of our “Donate to Win” drawing! We hope you enjoy your FREE one-hour massage. 

Thank you to everyone who participated in the “Donate to Win” drawing during PT Month in October. F&L will be giving your generous donations to two local charities. There’s not a more perfect time for your donations than during the holiday season. We greatly appreciate your tremendous effort toward our “Spread the Aloha” campaign and look forward to having the same support in upcoming events.