SOUTH FLORIDA REVIEW BLOG
South Florida's Source For Local Happenings
SOUTH FLORIDA REVIEW BLOG
South Florida's Source For Local Happenings
Meeting Dr. Aracelly Latino-Feliz, who introduced herself as "Ara" was such a delight. She is one of those souls who lights up a room and has this amazing soothing, energy that just oozes out of her. She has a beautiful ability to make you feel like you've known each other for years. You will end up leaving feeling so much more enlightened and educated, as she is very thorough in explaining and sharing her experiences.
Our interview took place in Dr. Latino's exceptionally clean, high vibe private practice room, located in the heart of Dania Beach, FL on 11/30/2017.
We highly recommend that you visit Ara at the Movement Therapy Institute for any orthopedic, neurophysiological and chronic body pain issues. Dr. Aracelly Latino-Feliz is the TOP PHYSICAL THERAPIST in DANIA BEACH and the surrounding areas.
Our interview went as follows:
Interviewer: So tell me a little bit about your business. How long have you been in business?
Dr. Latino-Feliz: I have been a physical therapist for ten years. I've been in private practice for about three years and I own a concierge physical therapy practice.
Interviewer: And you've been here the whole time?
Dr. Latino-Feliz: No, when I got out of physical therapy school I worked in Fort Lauderdale for about two years and then I met my husband. We got married and relocated to the San Francisco Bay Area. So I worked out of a clinic there in Oakland, California for four years and learned different business models out there. Physical therapy - the approach was completely new to me. When I came back, I brought back everything I learned, and knew exactly what I was looking for in terms of what I wanted to provide in service and I decided to open my own practice.
Interviewer: Awesome! What got you into physical therapy?
Dr. Latino-Feliz: What got me into physical therapy was just the drive to want to help humanity. I have a passion for health, education, the human body and just learning in general. We are a complex system, made up of multiple systems and being able to understand all of that and then create an environment where people can heal. It's a wonderful profession and allows people the opportunity to move forward despite having an accident. Someone can thrive despite losing a limb, having a fracture, traumatic brain injury or a stroke. Life may change after an injury but it's not over. It's never over until we are actually gone. So, we have to be able to work with what we've got, whether it's a cardiovascular issue, a sprained ankle, or knee surgery.
Interviewer: Did anyone inspire you?
Dr. Latino-Feliz: You know, I was going through my own journey when I was very young - about 14, I started getting hurt almost about every year in high school. I played soccer, I ran track and I cheered. I was constantly on the go and although I suffered multiple injuries I was able to seek physical therapy and get back on the field. So I learned very quickly that my body had the capacity to restore itself. However, I knew something was missing and I think that, that is what lead me to physical therapy - where I got better, but then I would keep getting injured and it was like, "well, why am I still getting injured?" It wasn't until after I graduated from physical therapy school that I started getting more chronic pain, that I was just like, "there's something missing here". I'm doing physical therapy, I'm doing all these things - it's a lifestyle and I think that's what people have to understand - and this is why I am in private practice BECAUSE it is a lifestyle change. Physical therapists are really health coaches - when we think about what we really provide for our community - it is education. But it's the education that allows people to really understand how to take care of themselves, how to eat well, how to manage stress and then, how to move and understand how our body moves - the neurophysiology behind it.
Dr. Latino-Feliz: I'm certified in different things - I've done Graston technique, I've done active release technique, I've done Kinesiology taping, Rock tape - all these different modalities. All these modalities are tools that you can use to be able to allow the nervous system to get into what's called the "Parasympathetic state", where healing occurs.
When we are in survival mode, which is where stress, pain, anger, frustration live, we are allowing our bodies to tap into the sympathetic nervous system. The parasympathetic nervous system is known as your rest and digest state; where you're relaxed, you're on vacation, you're like in your groove with whatever it is you're doing. Ideally we want our body in that parasympathetic state, so my job as a physical therapist is to get people in that parasympathetic state because it is also where healing occurs. You can't heal if you're stressed out or going through whatever you're going through - your body is just trying to survive. That is why it is in pain. So to get you out of pain and to be able to understand the importance of what it is you're dealing with it - and it could be the loss of a parent, or going through a divorce or kids are just three toddlers running around and you can't keep up because you're not getting much sleep ...
So, I bring that sense of calm when people come in here and I am able to address what the root of the problem is. Usually it is not just shoulder pain because we are not "parts" - it's a whole person -it's a whole body; the whole system.
Interviewer: So what was the toughest thing you went through when opening?
Dr. Latino-Feliz: It was really getting past just what is the standard of physical therapy. So, most physical therapists when you go to physical therapy school, are not trained to be entrepreneurs. You really kind of just are either working in a hospital or you work for an outpatient physical therapy practice, or inpatient with a skilled nursing facility or something like that, or home path - if you want a little bit more liberty.
The hardest part is really understanding that: one, I didn't want to be in debt and taking out a business loan was something that, personally where I was in my life - I just didn't want to do. And one of my mentors - you had mentioned who was my mentor - I had several. So one of them specifically - the last two of them that I worked for - they were both amazing physical therapists and business owners. They told me
"start small and stay small and then you can grow from there". I took that advice and one of the biggest struggles was really knowing that I could and had everything I needed in order to go forward because the fear of not being successful or what would it be like not taking insurance, what kind of resistance would be there ... So I think that just getting past that and overcoming that fear of "it's going to be fine, it's going to be successful, I'm going to make it work and I am going to really help people". That is what really drove me - knowing that my mission is far greater than my fear - it was something that I HAD to do!
Interviewer: You are such a light!
Dr. Latino-Feliz: Thank you!
Interviewer: Awesome! You're very educating as well! So what is the number one way you currently bring in new customers?
Well, this post is not only for South Floridian Businesses...
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