Yes, I’ve got a brand new website and I am totally excited about it. I will tell you more about it in a minute. But I need to tell you all the story, because I think it’s a good one. This website reflects the hard work of a year of craziness and big changes in my practice as well as in my life. Here is what happened:

One year ago, I was in a completely different place than I am now. I was stressed and exhausted from four years of running my practice as if I had a staff of 12 running a hospital outpatient department and a spa rolled into one. I was working 60+ hours a week treating clients and running the back office of the clinic while attempting to do a decent job of taking care of my three kids. I was worn out, but I could not see a way to make life different because I was just trying to see through to the end of each day. I knew that something needed to change but could not figure out what change would make life run a little more smoothly.

As I tell my clients, when you refuse to slow down and take care of yourself, your body will do it for you. In January I got really, really sick, and powered through until I was unable to do so any longer, and saw a few urgent cases only from the end of February until the beginning of April. And this down time opened my eyes to the fact that many of the clients whom I had jammed into the schedule week after week were doing just fine, maybe even better off without me! I had been doing people a disservice by allowing them to become far too dependent on me, and perhaps accidentally feeding a belief that only I could make them feel better.

What I realized was that my clients, many of whom had seemed completely dependent on me to be able to function, had taken what they’d learned and were living their lives and healing themselves. And this realization was the cornerstone for my new practice structure. I made a decision to return to my former acute injury and rehab model with much more focus on arming clients with strategies to help themselves, give them back responsibility for their own health and their strength, and empowering them to not be afraid to live their lives during recovery from injury or illness. With that responsibility to follow the steps to recovery that I develop with clients during a session, clients are getting better much faster now, and on average are finished with PT in 3 to 5 visits. And if there is no sign of improvement by the sixth visit, then it is evident that other intervention is needed.

And because life wasn’t quite exciting enough, in the spring my former website was destroyed by robot hackers! Yes, that really is a thing that happens, I swear I didn’t make it up. But it honestly couldn’t have happened at a better time. The new practice structure was coming together, and the demise of the old website seemed to me to be a sign that the old practice and structure were officially defunct. I found VT Web Marketing, an amazing team of talented young guys who seemed to understand exactly what I needed, and what I wanted the new website to be, despite my complete inability to express anything in terms remotely related to technology.

So back to the website: The new website provides information, directions and forms for prospective and new clients, but even more importantly, it provides tools for current and former clients and everyone else in the world to help everyone guide their own recovery and put them on the path to wellness. It is a work in progress, and I hope that what we’ve started will continue to grow and evolve as time goes on, and that you’ll find it useful and fun!

On the Home page, please look for the “Announcements” box which I plan to update frequently, my current blog, and a new “featured exercise” link which I plan to update once a month. Then you can start clicking on the headings across the top of the home page. Please read my “Meet Kathleen” and “Points North PT Philosophy” sections under “About Points North PT.” They will help you understand what I have learned from 18 years of clinic experience as well as firsthand in my own life, that good health is about balance, the human body by nature is a healing machine, and injury and illness persist when the systems in your body are overloaded and out of balance. The philosophy section also outlines the partnership approach to healing at Points North PT and what I expect from my clients. My “Services” section will give you an overview of the specifics of what you can expect from a treatment session and what Points North PT has to offer you.

A brand new feature of this website is my “Resources” section. This is where you will find a number of self-help tools including videos of exercises that I prescribe in the clinic; some land and water-based workouts that you can feel free to try; links to other websites that I frequently recommend for products and information; and a reading list of some of my favorite books on wellness, neuroscience, the biology of disease, specific medical conditions, and other special interest topics.  Please also check out the “Blog” heading, where you can find my blogs which provide detailed information on injuries, methods of treatment, exercises, sports and training, as well as my thoughts on various PT-related topics. I hope you will follow the blog and feel free to click around the blog archives.

I am proudest of the heart of the website, my Photo Gallery. If you’ve sent me a photo or posed for a photo in my clinic, look for yourself here! It’s small right now but growing, and if you’re ever having a bad day, click on this link to look at these photos of some of the bravest people I know, who have worked through serious illness and/or unimaginable pain to be able to do things they love to do with the people they love. You also may see them demonstrating an exercise or showing off a treatment, or just goofing around in my clinic. We have a lot of fun down here. And if you’re in the photo gallery, know that you’ve been included in it only because you are truly worthy of being in it! Your hard work and amazing spirit earned you a place here, and maybe on an actual (not virtual) wall in my clinic someday, once I get organized.

I have so many people to thank—John Walsh and Ryan Meravi at VT Web Marketing for their expertise, guidance, professionalism, and patience, Emily Haskins for her beautiful website photography, Gabrielle Doehla for her extremely patient filming of the exercise videos, Charlotte Brynn for The Swimming Hole seminar photos, XTERRA for the race action shots shown on the site, my amazing patients who were good sports and modeled for the website and sent me photos for the photo gallery, and Mark, Natalie, Gabby, and Matthew for putting up with and loving a sick and stressed wife and mom, helping bring her back to health, and then tolerating a distracted and manic mom during the website project. I love you all and could not have completed this project without any of you.

If you have any questions about the information on site, or just want to say hi and give me some feedback on the new site, just click on the contact information at the top and bottom of the home page. As always, I’d love to hear from you!

–Kathleen Doehla, M.S. P.T.