11/01/2012 - By Gayle Irwin
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Maureen "Mo" Lafferty celebrated her one-year anniversary as owner of Body in Motion last month with a relocation. She moved her business from the Atrium Plaza downtown to a larger location at A and Beverly streets. The larger space allows Mo to have a gym with various pieces of equipment as well as offers no stairs for patients to navigate and provides ample parking.
As a Licensed Physical Therapist Assistant, Mo helps injured patients with mobility and stability. She works with clients' doctors, who, most times, set up the appointments.
"The doctor is in the loop that way," she says.
Mo has worked in the medical field for more than 20 years, starting out as a scrub tech at the hospital and eventually becoming certified as a physical therapy assistant (PTA). Working with her at Body in Motion are two physical therapists (PTs), a certified massage technician (CMT), and a bookkeeper.
Mo says her business is unique in several ways. First, it's unusual for a PTA to own his/her own business; usually PTAs are overseen by PTs.
"An opportunity arose, and I jumped out there!" Mo explains.
She says she had strong support from the PTs she knew as well as the local doctors.
"They were all positive," she says of the medical community's reaction regarding her decision to open Body in Motion. "They believed in me and my skills. The doctors have been great, and the staff I have is very supportive. We work really well together," she says.
That work includes hands-on therapy, such as soft tissue and deep tissue work. Mo and her colleagues also employ gym equipment and, as a certified pilates instructor, Mo also incorporates core work when appropriate, including balance balls.
Something else that sets her apart, according to one of her colleagues, is the fact Mo works very directly with patients during their one-hour sessions.
"Manual therapy sets Mo apart," says Cyndi Brainard, certified massage therapist who also works at Body in Motion. "[A patient] is one-on-one with the therapist she shows people how to do the things necessary and does it with you."
Helping a patient gain better mobility and stability is the center of her business.
"We need both," Mo says. "Body in Motion that's how we should be."
Although she doesn't conduct chiropractic work, myofascial release, or working at the cellular level, is part of the therapy she provides.
"If one area is injured, there's tension all over," Mo says. "We help people get back into alignment."
"I enjoy making life better for people with injuries and illnesses," she continues. "They don't always get back to 100 percent, but they feel better and have less pain."
Mo said opening her own business "was a lot of work" but that she "enjoys making a difference" in people's lives.
Body in Motion is open 8 am to 5 pm, Monday through Friday, but Mo says she will meet the needs of her clients. That includes home visits when necessary.
"I'll go their home temporarily until they can begin coming in here," she explains.
In addition to treating back and neck injuries, Mo and her staff have helped youth suffering from sports injuries, burns, and dance injuries. She is also exploring assisting office personnel with ergonomics. She accepts various types of insurance, including Medicare.
Although people can call her directly, she mostly takes doctor referrals. Massages are by appointment only and don't require a doctor's referral. Mo has also done some charity work, providing services for veterans and I-Reach.
To learn more about Body in Motion or to schedule a massage appointment with Cyndi, call 337-1624 or 247-1803.