Episode 013 – Dr. Kelly Duggan, Owner of Physical Therapy U

Dr. Kelly Duggan

Happy New Year!  By the time you hear this it will be 2018. There are three times of year that I absolutely love: the beginning of the year, Boston Marathon time, and school starting time. Each feels like a new start. The Boston Marathon provides me with a kick in the pants. The start of the school year always makes me feel fresh and new. The beginning of the year is when I do all of my great planning and goal setting. Here are a few of my goals for LTPF in 2018: Consistently release new episodes of LTPF on a weekly basis, keep up with the blog, and add a new weekly content-type (maybe a blog post?). Personally, this will be the year when I finally stick to some sort of work out program. I will also finally travel outside of the country (nope, I’ve never been out of the country… eeek!). Send me a message with what some of yours are. How can I help you reach those goals?

Housekeeping: This June the Winning Edge Leadership Academy, co-founded by Maria Taylor of ESPN’s College Gameday is hosting a retreat in South Florida. The application for the retreat is open to all current and former student-athletes who have a desire to work in sports business. Those applications are due on February 1. I will be there.

Dr. Kelly Duggan is the owner of Physical Therapy U located in Bridgewater, MA. She is a graduate of Bridgewater State College and Massachusetts General Hospital’s Institute of Health Professions where she earned her Doctorate in Physical Therapy. Previously a physical therapist at a couple of other companies, she took the leap in 2016 to open her own business. Kelly is a mother of three. She has her own podcast: The Health and Fitness Connector Podcast, where she interviews guests who are in the health, fitness, and wellness industries.

Make sure you subscribe, rate and review on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, TuneIn, Google Play, and RadioInfluence.com.

 Additional Show Notes:
  • Kelly knew from a very young age that she wanted to work with the body. When she was in 8th grade, her cousin was in a really bad car accident. He loved his physical therapists and that solidified it for her. She references this scene from Step Brothers: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QzBmQMyYDBk.
  • She played sports year round but wasn’t super competitive. Her main question always is “Did you have fun?”
  • Kelly talks about sports specialization at an early age and how it’s destroying kids’ bodies much sooner. It causes overuse injuries and decreases the chances of the athlete to play later in life. Kids shouldn’t play the same sport year round until high school, if at all.
  • When a kid goes through a growth spurt is when injuries are most likely to occur because the bones grow quicker than the tendons and ligaments. That’s when they should be slowing down activities and take it easy.
  • The women discuss runners and strength training and how important it is.
  • Ever wonder what the difference between an athletic trainer and a physical therapist is? Kelly tells us.
  • There are some sad cases, particularly those clients with ALS. It is hard working with them, trying to make them comfortable, but knowing that they aren’t going to get better and that they’re in the process of dying. Kelly also shares some “traumatic birth” injuries.
  • Kelly’s aunt passed away from ALS. Kelly has worked with two ALS patients and it was really hard for her. You have to compartmentalize and push through without connecting emotionally too deeply.
  • It is Kelly’s goal to make everyone a PT. She gets so excited about it.
  • Kelly was pregnant with her third kid when she decided to leave a perfectly good job and go out on her own. She went outside of her network and reached out to other women who had done the same thing.
  • The name of her company came from what she knew she wanted the place to be about and she also loved educating patients. Their moto is “Learn. Rehab. Recover.”  It’s a very collaborative approach at her clinic and very friendly. They’re expanding to three times the size! This means they can be strategic and add more services. They provide an insurance-based program as opposed to cash based.
  • Bobbi-Sue applauds Kelly for hiring so many women. It wasn’t meant to be that way. However, the applicants who happen to be better end up being women. They’re hiring more people as well: massage therapists, office staff, etc.
  • Some of the struggles she’s had center around being a good mom, wife, and friend. Social media has been a bit of a struggle as well, sexual harassment.
  • 70% of the Physical Therapy workforce is female however they only make 88% of what men in the industry make for salaries. The majority of press and focus is on men, though.
  • A couple of the women started Women in Physical Therapy summit. Both men and women attend and they discuss ways to increase awareness of women in PT and amplify them. They are also working on a way to combat the social media harassment of the female PTs. The male PTs had no idea this was happening.
  • Kelly tries to give back by talking to anyone who wants to about being a PT. She has students shadow at the clinic.
  • Reach out to people you don’t know doing the things you want to do. It’s how Kelly and Bobbi-Sue have met some of their mentors.
  • Kelly’s videos on facebook or youtube are great not only for the amplification of female PTs but also because she is very confident in her own style. She’s never not herself, just completely authentic.
  • What does Kelly do for herself? Not much right now. She’s fully immersed in the business. When it’s nice out she golfs and she has a bit of a creative outlet.
  • She’s trying to add more mindfulness to everything she does including her practice. Bobbi-Sue wants to start incorporating meditation into her days more.
  • Goals for 2018: expansion and additional services, get to a point where she can back off a bit to spend more time with kiddos, for podcast – be consistent and grow.
  • Kelly started the Health and Fitness Connector Podcast to provide a resource for patients to hear about different types of practitioners. Talks about how your health can improve by adding different types of exercise or going to different practitioners and recent things in the news related to health and fitness.
  • Physical Therapists want you to go to them first for muscular skeletal issues.

Quotable moments:

  • “Every now and then take three weeks off.”
  • “99.9% of the time you have a reason to be happy.”
  • “99.9% of the time it’s an amazing field to be in.”
  • “I’m going to learn so much from doing this, so either way it’s going to elevate my career.”
  • “I’ve interviewed guys, it’s just that every woman I’ve interviewed is so much more superior.”
  • “You need to get comfortable being uncomfortable.”
  • “I don’t like to talk in front of people. I have a podcast. It’s weird.”
  • “Anyone who opens a business, it doesn’t matter what business it is, is completely immersed.”

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