Michele would describe herself as a life-long learner. As she evaluates and treats her patients at the Kaplan Center, she is curious to find compassionate methods her patients may not have yet explored. Her goal is to get to the root cause, promote optimal healing, and ultimately regain function.
With her passion and determination to provide the best physical therapy services possible, Michele has completed over a hundred continuing education seminars as well as a yearlong residency program in advanced orthopedic techniques at the Institute for Orthopedic Manual Medicine. She has also completed post-graduate training in osteopathic techniques such as: Craniosacral therapy, strain/counterstrain, and visceral manipulation; women’s health conditions such as breast cancer, osteoporosis, and prenatal/postpartum treatment; and movement re-education such as Feldenkrais (a form of somatic education that uses gentle movement and directed attention to improve movement and enhance human functioning), Functional Movement Systems, and muscle imbalance correction. Michele has also been trained in making custom foot orthotics for patients suffering with heel pain, plantar fasciitis, tendonitis, bunions, hammertoes, Morton’s toe, and several other conditions.
Along the way Michele taught for several years in the physical therapy graduate program at the University of Massachusetts. She passed extra boards to be an Orthopedic Clinical Specialist (OCS) which is a distinction only 4% of physical therapists in Virginia have achieved. She became a Certified Lymphedema Therapist (CLT) in 1999 and acquires re-certification every 2 years with 2017 being her 9th time to do such advanced training.
In 2015, Michele became an adjunct faculty member at George Washington University. She is currently teaching a course on surface anatomy in the doctoral program within the Department of Physical Therapy and Health Care Sciences. But Michele continues to see the importance of being a student in order to maintain, refine and add skills to her repertoire. She has taken a number of courses that will help treat her patients at the Kaplan Center, including:
- 2-day advanced Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapy course for the Neck and Thoracic Spine. This course covered examination and treatment for Neck Pain with Mobility Deficits and Neck Pain with Movement Coordination Impairments.
- Explain Pain: A 2 day course which covered biologically based pain management skills under a framework of the sciences of clinical reasoning and evidence from clinical trials, neurobiology and education research.
- Dynamic Foot and Ankle: A lab intensive introduction to the Functional Manual Therapy® system for management for the foot and ankle. Through lecture and demonstration, Michele gained a better understanding of the anatomical and biomechanical presentation of an efficient foot and ankle which provides for a dynamically stable and mobile base of support.
- Rock Tape Functional Movement Techniques: 2 Distinct courses that covered 1) the concept of movement therapy and enhancement via functional taping methods, and 2) introducing the concept of a longitudinal muscle chain approach to the elastic therapeutic taping and a myofascial sequencing model of “Taping movements, not muscles.”
Michele thrives on being curious and challenged to work with complex patients applying solutions for pain and movement dysfunction. As it is for her physical therapist colleagues at the Kaplan Center, for her it is all about results for her patients as together solutions are found! When not helping to heal the patients at the Kaplan Center, you can find Michele laughing with family and friends, digging in her organic vegetable garden, volunteering as a Master Gardener, traveling, biking, kayaking, swimming, or skiing.