By Mark Yanai

Introducing Justin

Our Northeastern Co-ops have been with our organization since July, working diligently in our clinics while supporting our therapists in treating our patients. Since being exposed to the “island-style” life, they have been going on different adventures every weekend and are really making the most of their stay here. Of the four Co-ops this fall semester, we have one more student to introduce. Let’s meet Justin and find out why he wants to become a physical therapist, because we know he’ll make a great one in the near future!

Meet Justin
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What school did you attend in high school and what’s your current college?
I went to The Morgan School in Clinton, CT. I currently go to Northeastern University in Boston, MA.

What drew you to PT?
I’ve always wanted to have a career that combined my love of sports with helping other people. PT is also a job where there is plenty of room for progression. Treatment techniques are always evolving, which gives us something to look forward to. [/two_third_last]

Why did you want to do your coop in Hawaii?
I want to travel to every part of the world and this is just the first step. I’ve been on one Caribbean cruise but that is the farthest I had been from home. Experiencing different ways of life is a great opportunity and I couldn’t pass it up. The aquatic program also drew my interest to Fukuji & Lum. I have already seen first hand the benefits of being in the pool compared to dry land.

What is the strangest thing you have eaten since arriving?
I wouldn’t call them strange, but I’ve had many poke bowls and musubis already. I’d eat a poke bowl every day if I could.

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What is on your to do list while here?
I want to learn a lot- about both physical therapy and Hawaiian culture. I also would like to spend as much time at the beach as possible and do all the best hikes the island has to offer.

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What are your outside interests?
I like to watch and play many different sports. I’m a huge Boston sports fan- Patriots, Celtics, and Red Sox all the way! I enjoy playing basketball and ultimate frisbee and recently got into triathlons. [/one_half]

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What kind of therapist do you hope to be?
I hope to be a successful and effective therapist. The dream job would be working for a professional sports team. I’m also interested in owning my own place someday. I want to provide all types of alternative treatments that may not be available at other physical therapy places. Incorporating physical therapists, athletic trainers, and nutritionists into one team-oriented area seems like the best environment for maximizing the body’s potential. 

Who is your greatest influence in your life?
Everyone we meet somehow becomes an influence in our lives, so it would be impossible to choose one. My parents have to be at the top of the list for how hard they work and how much they push me to be my best. I’ve had lots of great teachers and friends that keep me on the right track and I’m thankful for all of them.

By Mark Yanai

Introducing Leila

From Boston to Hawaii

5,027 miles. That’s how far our Northeastern University students travel from Boston to Hawaii to be a part of our ohana for the next six months. They put a pause on their school life and travel all this way, not knowing what is in store for them here in the islands. Four of them arrived for the fall semester, all with big smiles and feelings of excitement and adventure. We’ve already introduced two of them, Colby and Ashley, who work at our Kokokahi sites in Kaneohe. We have another student, Leila who works there as well and is enjoying working with patients at the pool and W.O.R.C. 

Let’s meet Leila!

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What school did you attend in high school and what’s your current college?
I attended Middlebury Union High School in Middlebury, VT. I am currently a student at Northeastern University in Boston, MA.

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What drew you to physical therapy?
Both my parents are doctors, so I have always been drawn to the medical field. I became interested in physical therapy when I started seeing physical therapists in middle school and high school due to sports injuries. The therapists were always able to help me recover so that I could get back to doing what I loved to do. I want to be able to do the same for other people. [/one_half]

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Why did you want to do your co-op in Hawaii?
I chose to come to Hawaii because I love to travel. I have always wanted to come to Hawaii and now seemed like the perfect time to go. I was also really interested in the aquatic physical therapy program at Fukuji and Lum, especially because I heard the pool was outside.

What has been your experience like so far? 

My experience here has been beyond amazing. The people of Hawaii have been so kind, welcoming and helpful. I love the island not only because it is so beautiful, but also because there are so many different things to do. I am never bored here! I love working at Fukuji and Lum because I am learning so much everyday in an extremely positive environment.

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What is on your to do list while here?
I have so many things I want to do while I am here. I want to hike Stairway to Heaven and the Pillboxes at sunrise, swim with dolphins and eat endless acai and pitaya bowls. It’s so hard to narrow it down because the opportunities here are endless.  I also really want to learn how to hula dance!

What’s the strangest thing that you’ve eaten since arriving?
Spam musubi and spam in general. My favorite foods I have had since coming here are acai and pitaya bowls. I’m obsessed with them![/two_third_last]

What are your outside interests? 

I absolutely love to dance. It is my favorite thing to do. I also like to hike, swim, and do yoga. I love to spend time with my friends and family as well. I am happiest when I am outside.

What kind of therapist do you hope to be?
I hope to be a caring, supportive therapist that helps patients meets their goals. I am keeping my mind open to what exactly I want to do later on in my physical therapy career, but I am currently leaning towards aquatic therapy for both adults and children.

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Who is your greatest influence in your life?
My family has been my greatest influence in my life. They have made me into the person I am today. My family is full of the most loving, supportive and kindest people I know and I aspire to be like them in everything I do.

By Mark Yanai

Introducing Ashley

Embracing Change is one of F&L’s core values that we look for in each of our employees. Every six months we get a new set of students from Northeastern University and our entire organization embraces their presence and the responsibility to care for them. This fall semester we have four new students including Colby, which I wrote about in my last blog.

Since my first Co-op blog, I’ve always used the same format when questioning the students about themselves. In trying to keep things fresh and evolving, I gave each of the Co-ops the freedom to write whatever they wanted in introducing themselves as employees of F&L. Today, we get to meet Ashley. [one_third]

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Deciding to spend my first co-op in Hawaii is probably one of the better decisions I have made. From the first time I spotted the Hawaiian site for my Co-op I knew I wanted to apply to Fukuji & Lum. However, never in a million years did I think I would actually get the honor of working with such intelligent and caring people. Being a physical therapy major, there isn’t much time to travel during the six years that I am I student. I am truly lucky to have been given the chance to be able to move to Hawaii and immerse myself in its culture for six months. [/two_third_last]

Working at Fukuji & Lum has given me opportunities that I never imagined were possible. From getting grastoned to actually taking patients through their exercise programs, I have gained so much experience that will help me become a better therapist in the future. Every day I learn something new. The people I get to work with are the best in their field, always making sure they explain things to me and that I understand, and constantly improving themselves as well.

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Having the opportunity to work not only in a clinic, but a pool and front office, also gives me a chance to learn so many different aspects of therapy. Each job that I have is different and teaches me something new.

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Working in the office has taught me a lot about the paperwork aspect of therapy. Before this experience, I never knew how complicated insurance was and I have gained a lot of respect for the people who do those jobs. Being in the pool was something that made me very excited to work here. The pool is a very unique setting for therapy and one I always found fascinating. While in the pool I have learned an alternative to land therapy and it has taught me to think out of the box when it comes to coming up with helpful exercises.

So far two months (one-third) of my Hawaiian adventure has gone by and I couldn’t be more shocked. It’s hard to believe I have already spent so long in this incredible place, at a job that makes me excited to wake up every morning. It also scares me that in a few short months I’ll be heading back to freezing cold Boston in the middle of January! At least I’ll have a nice tan… I am so thankful for this experience and can not wait to use all I learned and all I will learn at Fukuji & Lum as a physical therapist one day! [/two_third]

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By Mark Yanai

Introducing Colby

Every six months I interview and hire new Co-op students from Northeastern University to work with our organization as physical therapy students. From their first Skype interview to their last day in clinic, I feel the need to take care of these kids, making sure they are learning about the PT profession and experiencing life here in Hawaii. I always feel a sense of closeness to them and often wonder what it is that draws me so much to these students.

Last week I dropped my son off to college at the University of Washington for his freshman year. The feelings I had as a dad seeing my son leave home and off to a new school was of both elation and sadness. I felt so proud of him that he was taking on a new adventure and yet I was sad that from now on, I wouldn’t get to be a part of it, as I have been. I hope that the new people who become a part of this new chapter will take care of him.

And with those thoughts I realized what draws me so deeply to our Co-op students. While they are not my sons or daughters, the F&L family treats them as such. I feel like a parent watching them grow as students and prosper as employees, while guiding them along the way. I am grateful to be a part of their short stay with us and am happy to say that I had a hand in their learning process so they are able to get the most of out of their experience, whether it be in or outside of the clinical setting.

With that, I am happy to introduce our new student Co-ops this fall semester, starting with Colby.
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In a haiku, what school did you attend in high school and what’s your current college?

First, Lynnfield High School.

Next, I go to Northeastern

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What drew you to PT?
I originally was in school for Mechanical Engineering (at Northeastern University); but after shadowing some engineers the summer before my freshman year of college, I realized I didn’t see myself as an engineer in 20 years.  My mom and dad have been in and out of Physical Therapy for as long as I can remember.  Seeing their progress through and through has inspired me to become a part of this field that can positively affect a patient’s life.

Why did you want to do your coop in Hawaii?
I grew up in a small town right outside of Boston.  If I didn’t experience living in another state outside of New England then I would be doomed to live there for the rest of my life.  Hawaii is a great opportunity to see and learn about a whole new culture.  Now that I’m here I can’t wait to move back.

What is the strangest thing you have eaten since arriving?
Lychee Seeds brah, dey broke da mout’!

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What are your outside interests?

I really enjoy hiking, body surfing, being at the beach, photography, pick-up games of basketball, football and soccer, and playing music.  I’m also involved with the musical theatre company back at school.

What is on your to do list while here?
See the other islands.  Try as many foods as I can.  Take lots of pictures.  Get better at surfing.  Take a Hula Class.  Honestly, the list keeps getting longer every week just by talking to the patients and coworkers.

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What is your spirit animal?
The majestic sea cucumber.

What kind of therapist do you hope to be?
I hope that I can be a therapist that not only provides care and therapy to the patient.   But can be a friend if they need it.  I want to foster a relationship with my patients and coworkers that makes choosing to go to work in the morning a very easy decision.  As far as what setting I’d like to work in… honestly I have no idea yet; I would love to have a chance to work at as many different settings as I can.

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Who is your greatest influence in your life?
I have many influences in my life, all equally important to me.  I can’t say one is greater than the rest because I wouldn’t be where I am today without all of them.  An important influence has been my parents though.  Being able to go home one day and fix them would be one of the most rewarding experiences.  Another influence is seeing a patient’s path to recovery from start to finish.  I’m glad and hope that I will always be able to relish and share the joy of getting a patient back to their “old selves”.  

 

By Mark Yanai

The Awesome Experience of Finding Yourself

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One of the rewards of working with physical therapy students is being able to witness their amazing growth during their time with us. At the end of their internship, students normally see the success they accomplished with their work and have the realization of a learned skill. But with the Northeastern Co-Op students, it’s often a lot more than what happens in the clinical setting. They end up discovering their identity of who they really are and want to be in life.

While the experience of being in Hawaii for six months seems like an extended vacation, it is often much more than that. There’s a saying “You never leave a place you love, you take a part of it with you, leaving a part of you behind.” I find this is true for many of the Co-Ops, but much more so with Kara, one of our 5 Co-ops this past semester. When I first posted a blog introducing her back in Febuary, she wrote about her hopes to finding out what kind of therapist she could be. Six months went by fast and I could describe her tremendous growth in my words, but it’s more clear when you hear it from her.

My Co-Op Experience: Kara

So I guess now that I’m done with my first semester back I have no more excuses to not write this blog. It’s a big undertaking, however, because I am not particularly adept at putting my feelings and experiences into coherent thoughts. My usual encounter with anyone asking me how my 6-month co-op was in Hawaii might be something like this:

“So how was Hawaii?” Internal dialogue: ‘Ohmygosh it was so great I had so much fun I learned so much Fukuji and Lum is awesome they actually care so much about the co-ops and that we are having a good/educational time and the islands were great/magical/more than I ever imagined and I made friends and swam in the ocean with cute sea creatures and almost fell off a few mountains and ohmygosh I got so fit biking to work every day but it was scary in the rain and everyone was always so concerned and supportive of everything that we did and looked out for us like family wait what was I saying? What I actually say: “uhhhh…. Awesome?!?!”

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I’m pretty sure no one wants to hear me babble on like that, but that’s pretty much still all I can do.  I cannot describe what a great experience working for Fukuji & Lum was, or how much all of my amazing coworkers mean to me. It wasn’t just 6 months of sun and fun in a tropical paradise, although there was plenty of that, I was welcomed into the F&L family as a long-lost relative. The Hawaiian concept of Ohana is now engrained in me, not by being told the definition over and over, but by being shown over and over in the kindness and love of everyone I encountered.

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The experience I gained in the different clinics will shape the type of therapist I become. Up till now, being a physical therapist was a VERY distant dream. Being back from Fukuji and Lum and taking classes this summer, this is the first time I have actually felt this dream was attainable. Working as a therapist was something I wanted to do, but honestly up till now it was something I never actually felt I was capable of doing. I continued semester after semester with the growing feeling that I wasn’t good enough, that I wasn’t smart enough. The people at Fukuji and Lum have been great mentors, and the confidence they have shown in me has in turn made me more confident. Since returning from Hawaii I find I have been able to accept the fact that no, I don’t know everything, but that’s ok, that’s what the rest of my education is for.

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I am grateful for everything I came away from Hawaii having learnt and seen. In those magical 6 months I made lifelong friends, ate strange and delicious foods (does anyone want to send me some haupia?? no??), collected a hodgepodge of the culture and language, explored, learned much about myself, and fell in love…. with the Islands! So from the bottom of my heart, Mahalo Nui Loa!

By Mark Yanai

More Than Teamwork

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Earlier this year, F&L was fortunate to have five Co-Op students join us from Northeastern University as an education requirement of their physical therapy graduate program. Our relationship with the university is now going on nine years as we’ve hosted more than 20 students for their six-month stay at our clinics. Most of the students are placed at our Windward clinics, but since we had five of them this semester, one lucky Co-op was set to join our newest clinic in Honolulu, the Kuakini Physicians Tower in the Kuakini Medical Center.

When conducting interviews for the Co-Op Program, I look for candidates who will fit in well with our value-based organization. I knew that the student selected for our Honolulu clinic would have to be someone who could handle new and different challenges than previous co-ops. It didn’t take long for me to select Amelia, a fourth year student, to be the one to join our Honolulu team and be a part of the opening of our newest clinic. I was impressed by her maturity and work ethic and knew she would fit right in. It’s not surprising that the name Amelia is derived from the Latin words for “industrious” and “striving” as she fits the bill of what we look for in each of our employees.

Amelia is now back to her studies in Boston, but took the time to be a guest blogger for us and reflect on her experience working at the Honolulu clinic.

Guest Blogger: Amelia and the Meaning of “Team-work”

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When I initially heard a week before coming to Hawaii that I would be the Co-Op joining the Honolulu clinic, I’ll admit I had a few reservations.  My worries about being the only Co-Op at the clinic and the commute without a car were soon washed away and I couldn’t be more grateful to have been a part of the Kuakini family. As cheesy as it sounds, I never fathomed how inspiring and life-changing my experience at the Honolulu clinic would be. On my first day at Fukuji & Lum, a little silver Pontiac Vibe pulled into my driveway just after noon and drove me to see Lanikai beach. This would be the first of many car rides over the Pali Highway full of conversations with Art Lum, from which I have learned a great deal and truly cherish. During that first car ride Art explained to me the values based-culture of F&L, to which I could do little more than nod my head politely in reply.

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[one_half_last]However, after reflecting on my experience it is something I more deeply understand and hope to take with me as a clinician for the rest of my life. I’ve heard many peers and friends talk about the great “team” attitude they share with their coworkers and I’ve experienced it myself at other jobs, but there is something really unique about the F & L culture that makes it so special. I’m not quite sure I can put that into words, but I do know that each person I had the pleasure of working with in Honolulu for has influenced who I will become as a clinician and as a person. [/one_half_last]

[one_half]Art, Shaw, Brittany, Mike, Michelle, Lynn, Julie, and Terrence all went out of their way to make me feel at home; from feeding me endless Hawaiian snacks to teaching me new exercises to giving me weekend tips. They were continuously patient, kind, and supportive of me, of one another, and most importantly of our patients. Each of them brought something special to the table and our bond extended beyond the doors of the clinic to weekend hikes, Filipino restaurants, and Karaoke sessions. They showed me just what the F&L culture is all about and I hope to carry that with me wherever I go. [/one_half]

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Mauka a Makai

After cruising past Lanikai beach on that first day in Honolulu, Art and I headed over the mountains. He explained to me the first Hawaiian words I learned on the island, mauka and makai, to describe the mountains and the ocean. These words stuck with me and have come to mean a lot to me. Art marveled at how lovely the mountains looked that afternoon, and I can remember admiring that after many years in Hawaii he still found a new appreciation for the beauty of his surroundings every day. The beauty of the island was everywhere in Hawaii, filling my heart with joy day after day.

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In the 6 months I spent in having some of the most beautiful experiences of my life I came to an understanding that I have taken with me back to Boston. We often think tropical islands are the most beautiful places in the world, yearning for them in daydreams and ending up unsatisfied or unhappy by our own current surroundings. But the simple realization that it is much more about attitude than it is about surroundings has made me more gracious and appreciative, and ultimately more happy. Hawaii has taught me to find beauty and happiness wherever I stand, mauka a makai. Joy can be found under streetlights and in sunsets if I open my eyes to it.

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By Mark Yanai

The Hi Life of the Supposed

 

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This past semester, Natalia, one of the five Northeastern University Co-ops worked with me at our W.O.R.C. site and with Randy at our Kailua clinic. She was one of the PT students that was exposed to and later immersed in Postural Restoration Institute (PRI) techniques, something exciting and new to F&L. Natalia has since returned to Boston to resume classes and continue her pursuit of her doctorate degree in Physical Therapy.

She spent her last weekend in Hawaii attending F&L’s closed course on PRI, which I wrote about in my last blog. I had just returned from my trip to Boston where I commented to everyone that “no one has heard of any student named Natalia”.  She was then given the name “Supposed” by James Anderson, our course instructor.

I don’t always get to work closely with the Co-Ops as they are assigned to our various clinics, but when I do, I get very attached to them. Natalia was no different and we got to know each other well. She was a terrific student of the craft and I know she’ll become an excellent clinician. We will definitely miss her presence at the clinics and wish her the best in her future endeavors. We are so grateful to Natalia for writing about her experience working with F&L and the fun she had living on the island for six months.

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My Co-Op Experience: Natalia

Upon my return to Boston, I’ve heard the same question over and over from my classmates and friends: “How was Hawaii?” This is a surprisingly difficult question for me. I usually answer with some variation on the words “spectacular”, “completely amazing”, or perhaps a succinct “epic”, but no matter what I say, the words seem lacking to describe how much the experience truly meant to me.

Living in Kailua and working at Fukuji & Lum has without a doubt been the best six months of my life to date. I got to work with such amazing, compassionate, intelligent people who provided me a real life example of what culture- and value-oriented health care is all about. I got to learn from uniquely skilled, experienced, and dedicated physical therapists who were incredibly generous in sharing their knowledge and went out of their way to give me an educational experience I don’t think I could have gotten anywhere else. I got to become familiar with types of treatments not all practitioners learn even after graduation, such as PRI, Strain-Counterstrain, and NAIOMT.

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Over the past six months, I have grown so much and become more confident in myself as an individual, a healthcare professional, and a future physical therapist. And of course, I got to do all this in between weekends spent exploring sheer clifftops, cascading waterfalls, colorful pillboxes, jungle forests, ancient ruins, hidden treehouses, vibrant reefs, and white-sand beaches; eating amazingly ono grinds from all around the island, from the food trucks in Haleiwa to ramen in Honolulu; and visiting unique cultural places like the city graffiti of Kaka’ako or the tranquil beauty of the Byodo-in Temple, among so many others.

Along the way, I got to forge incredible friendships with my coworkers, roommates, patients and more. Living in Hawaii taught me to open up so much more than I ever used to and showed me just how easy it is to make friends, be it with someone I met on the top of the Makapu’u lighthouse hike, in downtown Honolulu, at the beach playing volleyball, or even in the clinic. I’m so grateful that I got to share some pretty awesome island experiences with such a large variety of people. No matter where I was or how much of a stranger I felt at first, I was always welcomed and treated like ohana. From my experience, the “aloha spirit” is very much a real and tangible thing; the islands really bring people together.

One of the things I’m really glad I did was visiting Kauai to take in the views along the steep Na Pali Coast hike and from the top of Waimea Canyon. Each island is so different and offers so many unique experiences, which I didn’t realize until after I had gone to Kauai. I hope to come back to Hawaii and experience more of the adventures each island has to offer. And despite all the hikes and adventures I managed to fit in, there are still things on my Oahu bucket list I have yet to do!

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As I return to classes and adjust back to life in Boston (which, right now, is far hotter and stickier than Hawaii was, unfortunately), I am constantly reminded about how lucky and blessed I was to be surrounded by some of the most beautiful beaches, mountains, bays and waterfalls in the world, all within such close reach. I deeply treasure all of the connections and ongoing relationships I made there, and it’s hard to be so far away; the island life already seems so distant. I think warmly of the patients I helped to treat and the amazing people I worked with, and I’m trying to bring some of that aloha spirit they showed me along with me back to Boston. If I’m being honest, I wish I could still be working at Fukuji & Lum – six months seemed too short! But I know that the rest of my education lies in front of me, and the island will always be there to welcome me back. In the meantime, I’ll have to settle to listening to Kolohe Kai and Jack Johnson while studying for midterms in the library, dreaming of Lanikai beaches.

Mahalo and aloha oe to everyone in Fukuji & Lum and anyone who’s touched my life in Hawaii in someway. I hope to be back to say aloha again some day.

Love,

Natalia

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By Mark Yanai

My PRI Path

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Postural Restoration Institute and F&L

This past June, F&L held a private Myokinematic Restoration course from the Postural Restoration Institute (PRI). The course was limited to F&L clinicians to introduce PRI’s philosophy to our organization and was instructed by James Anderson, MPT, PRC, who is one of the primary instructors for PRI as well as the Director of Affiliate Courses.

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I first met James back in April of this year when I traveled to San Francisco for the same course. I found the content in the Myokinematic Restoration challenged many of the traditional teachings of my profession, yet provided evidenced based results that supported it’s philosophy. I enjoyed James’ energy and passion for teaching and thought his style kept me engaged throughout the weekend course. I left excited to apply what I learned to my patients.

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I got mixed results, so I knew my skill and knowledge of PRI needed to improve. I signed up for another PRI primary class in Boston called Postural Respiration, hosted by Northeastern University. It was the perfect location for me to visit as we have a great relationship with NU’s Cooperative Program. The course was taught by Mike Cantrell, MPT, PRC, who also brought great passion to PRI’s teachings.

Both courses gave me a better understanding of PRI and its development of an innovative treatment approach that explains the primary contributors of postural kinetic and kinematic movement dysfunction.  PRI’s founder, Ron Hruska, MPA, PT, recognized patterns with polyarticular chains that create asymmetry and adaptations to function. It’s these chains that create tone or inhibition of muscles that are addressed with PRI techniques. Recognition of these patterns and how they create dysfunction are critical in a clinician’s ability to apply PRI’s unique approach.

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PRI concentrates on the respiration and gait patterns that we all use to function on a daily basis. The use of the diaphragm and the specific exercises designed for PRI are unique for traditional orthopedic approaches. I found myself blowing into a balloon to improve my ribcage mobility and pelvic symmetry, which seemed comical at first. But as I continued down the path of PRI exercises and respiration techniques, I found that its unorthodox methods produce some significant changes in not only my patients, but in my own body and function.

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As for the Myokinematic Restoration course at F&L, it was a huge success for both our organization and myself. Hearing James a second time and now being equipped with two primary courses, I felt confident in my ability to apply PRI techniques with greater effectiveness. Our therapists have gained a terrific introduction to PRI and valuable knowledge that kept inline with our current practice methods.

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It’s my hope that we continue down this path with PRI. It’s still early in our relationship with James and PRI but it has already produced great outcomes for our patients.

For more information regarding PRI, visit their website or contact our organization to schedule a visit.

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By Mark Yanai

Introducing Kaitlin

I can’t believe our Co-ops have been with us for two months already and all five of them have been wonderful additions to the F&L Ohana! We would like to introduce our final Co-Op student, Kaitlin, who works primarily at our clinics located at the Kokokahi YWCA in Kaneohe. She has been doing a great job of bouncing back and forth between the Aquatic center, WORC and Kaneohe clinic. She celebrated her birthday last week, so it’s only appropriate that we get to know her a little better and wish her a Hau’oli La Hanau!(HAPPY BIRTHDAY!)

What school did you attend in high school and what’s your current college?
I went to South Carroll High School in Maryland. I currently attend Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts.

What drew you to PT?
When I was younger I wanted to be a teacher, but as I got older I felt a draw to be more involved in the medical field. Physical therapy is a career that involves both teaching and medicine! Once I started looking at physical therapy schools, I knew that it was the right choice for me.

Why did you want to do your coop in Hawaii?
I love to travel and I wanted a change of pace from Boston.

What is the strangest thing you have eaten since arriving?
Natto! I tried it at a Japanese market in town with Mila.
What is on your to do list while here?
I really want to do a bicycle trip around the entire island! I also would love to learn how to surf.

What are your outside interests?
I really enjoy hiking, biking, and being outdoors! I love finding new places and meeting new faces, and any activities that can involve both : )

What kind of therapist do you hope to be?
I really hope that I can incorporate injury prevention programs into my career as a physical therapist. I am very interested in pediatric and geriatric orthopedics and hope to be able to work with both patient demographics.

Who is your greatest influence in your life?
My dad has been a huge influence in my life. He is the reason I hold so much value in being active and healthy. Growing up he always encouraged me to try new things, go new places, and find active ways to have fun. I wouldn’t be on the road to becoming a physical therapist if it weren’t for the experiences I had growing up with him.

 

By Mark Yanai

Introducing Mila

mila & kait

Introducing Mila!

As we continuing with our introductions of our five new co-ops, we welcome Mila to the F&L family. She and her classmate, Kaitlin, are currently working at our Kokokahi clinics, both at the pool and Kaneohe clinic. Throughout the next six months, we hope that some of our patients get the opportunity to be a part of her experience in Hawaii.

What school did you attend in high school and what’s your current college?
I attended Ashland High School and my current college in Northeastern University in Boston.

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hawaiiii

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What drew you to physical therapy?
During my freshman year of college I became very active and started running and working out with a grassroots workout group called November Project. As a retired dancer and a pharmacy major I quickly realized that my passion lay in the preventative side of medicine that focused on patient care and had an impact on patients’ lives. After going to physical therapy myself, I realized that a career as a physical therapist would allow me to explore my interest in the human body and make a huge impact on the quality of life of my patients. It is an extremely rewarding, challenging, and fun career that completely matches my active lifestyle.

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Why did you want to do your co-op in Hawaii?
F&L offers aquatic therapy, which is something I have always been interested in. They also seem to have a family environment within their company, which is something I have always wanted to experience. And… it’s Hawaii; the real question is why would I ever not want to do my coop in paradise! It is so amazing to have a full day at work and then be able to drive 5 minutes to do a sunset hike overlooking the beach.

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What has been your experience like so far?
My experience so far has been absolutely incredible! I can’t believe it has only been a month. I have been hiking, surfing, swimming, eating lots of delicious food, meeting wonderful friends, and getting my tan on.

What’s the strangest thing that you’ve eaten since arriving? Natto…

What is on your to do list while here?
Hike stairway to heaven, sky dive, check out Big Island and Kauai, paraglide, learn more songs on guitar, eat everything, get very tan, and of course learn how to surf!

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Eddie

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What are your outside interests?
I love to dance, cook, write, sing, read, watch movies, hike, and snowboard.

What kind of therapist do you hope to be?
I would like to be an outpatient orthopedic therapist. I hope to obtain the experience and knowledge to confidently provide each individual patient with the best care and attention to their unique injuries.

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hawaii

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Who is your greatest influence in your life?
I don’t have a single influence in my life. I am blessed to have been surrounded by loving friends and family who have shaped me into the person I am today. I have had the same best friends since the 6th grade and I am very close to my family. I believe the close relationships I have made so far have been my biggest motivator and have showed me how fun life can be when you’re surrounded by those you love!

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