How did you become a physical therapist?
I grew up in central Oregon, where my family had a very active lifestyle. I was a gymnast when I was younger and had some injuries — stress fractures in my lower back — which lead me to realize that a desk job wasn’t an option. I physically couldn’t sit for more than a couple hours at a time. I actually went to school to become a vet, then realized that lifting heavy animals wasn’t great for my back, either. Physical therapy happened to be another great passion of mine!
What is your speciality?
My big passion is pelvic rehab, which includes work with the hip and back, sacroiliac joints and pelvic dysfunction. I look at everything from how my patients eat, how they breathe, how they sit at work, how they move, how they respond to emotional stressors, then give them optimal strategies to help resolve myofascial and musculoskeletal issues.
How did you end up in Rhode Island?
My husband is over at the naval war college — he’s a marine. We’ve moved around the country and lived in California, Virginia, North Carolina, and now here, and we don’t know where we’re going next. It’s been quite a journey!
With every one of these moves I’ve had the opportunity to see different practices around the country. Really the big take-home message is that we need vast, grassroots education on how to help people stay healthy when they work, when they play, and when they take care of their families.
What is your setup like?
When i work at home, I typically follow where the best light falls throughout the day. I love that i can take the Pivot with me — it’s light enough to move. I’ll start at the kitchen island, and then I’ll l move to another room in the house, like the dining room. It’s been fantastic to have something comfortable and very mobile that I can have with my workspace that changes all the time.
As I’ve gone back to school, I love how my Pivot Seat lets me keep moving as I work and study without back pain. Overall I feel better at 40 than I did in my twenties! One of my biggest missions as a physical therapist is to spread knowledge about how we are designed to live and move normally; the human body is not intended to be seated for really more than twenty minutes at a time, so having the ability to move often is really critical to everyone’s health.
See some of Jolene’s strategies for fitting in exercise, stretching, and focused breathing throughout the day over on our blog.