Patient Spotlight

Joan hiking with her daughter and grandson in the pacific northwest.

Joan hiking with her daughter and grandson in the pacific northwest.

How did you start “Joan’s hiking buddies”?

When I retired in 1999, I didn’t have enough friends to support retirement. So, I joined hiking groups, but after a few years I realized I wanted more than their scheduled events, so I started my own group, Joan’s hiking buddies. I regularly email a newsletter to about 80 mostly retired women aged 50-90, announcing multi-day camping/hiking trips and local hiking day trips. We always have a yearly trip to the Porcupine Mountains, offering the ability to camp outside or have indoor lodging. I plan the travel/lodging logistics and then someone else plans the hiking because I am “logistically challenged,” I even got lost in the woods once when I was 75 years old, having to spend a night out in the wild. I am now 82 years old.

How many trips do you go on per year?

I usually do three-four smaller trips per year and one major trip. For example, we once went hiking in the Cotswalds in Wales for three weeks. In addition, I am an organizer or a trip leader for canoe trips through Prairie State Canoers, often leading up to 10 canoe trips per year. My trip schedule this year includes two one-week canoe trips in Florida and Michigan and four hiking trips in Iceland, the Smokies, Idaho, and Michigan.

Why did you come to PT at The Manual Touch PT?

I initially came to PT one year ago with hip and knee pain that began after a canoe/hike trip in MO. After a couple of months of therapy, I was pain-free and I continued to do my exercises that Denise taught me. When I first came to PT, I was impatient as I couldn’t do the things I loved to do, such as hike or canoe. Denise understood how important it was for me to continue my interests, telling me, “Of course this is important; you are an athlete.” Denise spent time with me at each session so I felt relaxed, I never felt pushed, and it was fun. I really valued the mental and physical aspects of rehab as I learned about patience, so when a recent injury to my shoulder occurred after a canoe trip, I had more confidence that I would get better and stronger after this current round of PT…and I have.

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