Joan Hanson, MPT, PRC
1. Give us a brief history of your background and how you became interested in the Postural Restoration Institute?
I opened my own clinic in 1999. My Empi rep invited me to a Protonics course. It cost $99 and I didn’t want to go nor did I want to give up my Saturday. She offered to pay for the course if I would go. I decided to go and was used as the subject. I fractured my right patella in a MVA in 1986. Imagine my surprise and wonder when the instructor put the brace on my left leg, had me do some exercises, and my right knee felt better. I was intrigued and had to learn more. I have given up many weekends since then in my desire to learn more about PR.
2. You’ve attended several PRI courses. Can you tell us about your first course and your initial impression of the material?
My first course was Myokinematic Restoration in Jan 2001. I was intrigued and just had to know more. Little did I know that this would be the first of many trips to Lincoln, NE. Obviously I’m hooked because since the Protonics course in 2000, I have attended 20 other PRI courses. Just when you think that you’ve attended all the courses or just when you think you’ve got a good handle on the current information, Ron challenges and amazes you with something new. I love learning and I feel really good about patient care with this approach because I feel that I couldn’t do anymore for the patients under my care.
3. What made you decide to go through the Postural Restoration Certification process?
The funny thing is that I thought it was the culmination of a process of learning. In fact, it was just the beginning. Going through the process was a wonderful learning opportunity. I had to review the material in prep but I also learned a lot during the testing. The discussion generated while going through the test questions and lab was wonderful. I also liked the idea of being recognized for the time I had spent learning and applying this information with my patients. In a private clinic, anything that you can use to market yourself – that will help you stick out of the bunch, is very helpful so the additional certification was a helpful marketing tool.
4. Has becoming certified presented any new opportunities you feel you wouldn’t have had otherwise? Has PRI changed the way you practice?
Wow, great question. In 2007, some of the Sanford Hospital doctors went to administration and told them that Sanford needed a P.T. that provided Postural Restoration. They recognized the outcomes they were getting by using our clinic. We began discussions and in 2008, because of Postural Restoration, I sold my practice to Sanford USD Medical Center. My staff and I have stayed on and continue providing the same care in the same location. Sanford has been very good to us and continue to support the PR work going on here including providing support for continuing education.
5. Do you have any projects you plan on working on in 2012?
I am hoping to help my colleague Kyndy Boyle, PT, PRC, PhD complete some research on PR vs. traditional PT for sacroiliac joint dysfunction. I am also going through Mariano Rocabado’s seminars on cranio-facial at St. Augustine, Florida. But I am also looking forward to some upcoming PRI courses!
6. What areas of professional practice are you most passionate about?
If it’s about patient treatment, I’m passionate about it. All of the PRI courses interconnect because PRI teaches us how are bodies systems are interconnected. I feel like I better learn it all or I’m doing a disservice to my patients.
7. Who have your mentors been over the years?
For the last 10 years, Ron Hruska has been my mentor. I hope he will be my mentor for many more years. I thank God for him and pray for his longevity But many PRI trained therapists have been helpful at some point. I recommend the PRC annual meetings because they generate great discussion and help you build relationships so you have more life lines from which to choose.
8. Did selling your practice to the hospital change the way you approach PRI concepts?
Not at all. You must always choose to do what is right for the patient. When I sold my practice, my VP at the time said, “We want you to continue in the same entrepreneurial spirit that you have always shown in the past”. Sanford knew and agreed that this clinic would require more CE than the average P.T. or clinic. My current VP is very supportive of PR. Sanfordhealth.org will soon have a webpage on Postural Restoration that I am creating so that patients in SD, ND, MN, and IA will be able to more easily find a provider in this specialty area.