My time at Catalyst Physiotherapy, Performance, and Wellness has been both a special and enlightening journey. It was a special clinical experience to me because it was one of my final internships prior to graduation and one that I was able to complete in my hometown. I found the whole clinical experience at Catalyst Physiotherapy to be very enlightening because it was not a typical physical therapy clinical due to the strong community connection that they hold and incorporate each day.
While at Catalyst Physiotherapy I learned the importance of having a strong involvement in the community around you, especially working in healthcare. As a soon-to-be physical therapist, who would eventually like to open a clinic of my own, it was invaluable to have the experience of how to be involved with a community through physical therapy. During my time here I attended community lectures to improve walkability, a lecture on how to develop and achieve life/career goals, as well as consulting with NIU athletics. I have been a part of the Tai Chi and Strong & Steady classes at Catalyst Physiotherapy. However, all of this only touches the tip of the iceberg on the ways that Catalyst is involved with the community. Sarah and Jason (owners at Catalyst Physiotherapy) assert that community involvement is vital to making a wide-scale change in wellness and injury prevention because it affects more than just one individual at a time.
I also learned several essential skills as a physical therapist that I will take with me as I progress through my career. The two most meaningful skills I learned were the significance of teaching patients how to get on and off the floor as well as educating them on both their pain and their progress. I was enlightened on the benefits of floor transferring with patients because you never know when you will find yourself on the ground whether its gardening, playing with children or a dog, or due to a fall. I believe that each person should know how to do this because of the improvements it has to an individual’s quality of life. There has been recent focus on education as an aspect of physical therapy and I got to see the benefits of it first hand through this clinical experience. This is because it can improve the patients outlook and performance, which in turn optimizes their benefits of physical therapy and pain management.
Overall my clinical experience at Catalyst Physiotherapy, Performance, and Wellness has taught me a great deal of new skills that I will be forever grateful for. I am thankful for the Catalyst family who has challenged me and facilitated my learning each step of the way, especially my Clinical Instructor, Sarah Greenhagen. Lastly, I would like to thank all the patients I was able to work with, for allowing me to work with them as well as learn from them!