Above: Staff member Robyn Fedoriuk, Physiotherapist Andrea Eberhardt, and Physiotherapist Lori Shupak pose on some of Morinville Physical Therapy’s equipment. The company celebrates two years in business this month.

by Stephen Dafoe

For their first anniversary last year Morinville Physical Therapy held two appreciation barbecues during the month of September. This year there will be no hot dogs or burgers feeding patients and passersby. Instead, the local business has decided to support the Morinville Food Bank Society, who they learned in a Morinville News article were having a tough summer keeping the shelves stocked.

“We thought that there was definitely people that could use it more than us, and so we thought that we’d put that budget that we used last year towards donating to the Food Bank, and encouraging our patients to also bring in items,” said co-owner Andrea Eberhardt.
The collection of food will run through the month of September, and Eberhardt and business partner Lori Shupak are hoping to have similar success to the food drive they ran at Easter.
“We did the Easter drive as well, and our patients were really generous then,” Eberhardt said. “So we’re hoping to gather a lot this time, too.”

Two years into the business, the owners of Morinville Physical Therapy are thankful for the support they have received from Morinville and surrounding area and for the amount of referrals their patients send their way.

“We find that is our biggest referral source — word of mouth, and just general talk around town and the surrounding community as well,” Eberhardt said. “People have been really supportive, and that’s great.”

Although the company is offering the same services as when they began two years ago, the owners point out that the entire clinic is now IMS Certified.

“IMS stands for Intermuscular Stimulation,” said Shupak. “It’s a needling technique where the needles are inserted into really tight muscles, and it creates a reflexive action in our bodies to get the muscles to relax. It’s a very deep tissue treatment that is quite profound in the results it gets. We use it to treat anyone with really tight muscles, mostly in neck, shoulders, backs, glutes. It’s really effective.”

Shupak has been working with the technique for years, while Eberhardt has been more recently certified. Eberhardt adds it is an effective system for chronic pain.

The owners find that patients are sometimes surprised that a small town clinic offers the variety of services and skills Morinville Physical Therapy provide, a misconception that is common to many rural businesses in the province, particularly those in the healthcare fields.

Eberhardt and Shupak have many years experience between them and continue to take ongoing training. “It’s really neat to hear someone from the public recognize and acknowledge that,” Shupak said of the many compliments they receive from patients.

But beyond the skills brought to the treatment table, both Shupak and Eberhardt like to keep the mood light and jovial.

“People have a really good time in here,” Shupak said. “Ultimately, people come to see us because they are in pain or unhappy with some aspect of their life in terms of function. So we try to keep the environment in here really light and try to make their treatment about fun and feeling better. If we can take their mind off their pain or their problems, even for a short moment, we’ve helped them. We do find that we try to have a lighthearted, fun, laid-back approach to treatment where the patient and the therapist are on a level playing field, as opposed to a hierarchy between medical professional and patient.”

For more information on Morinville Physical Therapy, visit their website at morinvillephysio.com.

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