My family and I relocated to Nanaimo in October of 2014. My son was only 4 months old, being on maternity leave I had the opportunity to explore my return to work options. Fast Forward to May 2015 and Symphony began as just me - my massage table - and my Sorento. I started Symphony as strictly a mobile service … but I had a vision. I am THRILLED my vision is taking shape! Our clinic opened in April 2016, we have built an amazing team. As I do I am always thinking of ways to serve our clients ~ and thus comes Telehealth!
I learned very early in my physiotherapy career that I had a passion for neurology and movement. Since graduating from the University of British Columbia, I have taken post-graduate courses in the Bobath Concept, NDT, PWR!, Chronic Pain, IMS, Acupuncture,Vestibular Rehabilitation,Concussion (Post-Concussion) Rehab and Functional Neurology. I believe that by continuing to educate and grow individually I can offer my clients the best of my skills; which in turn, will help you reach your goals and achieve the most of your quality of life.
I have experience in all aspects of the contiuum of neurological rehab - acute care (including the emergency room, acute stroke floors as well as throughout other medical floors in the hospital setting), In-Patient Rehabilitation, and in the private clinic setting. Having these experiences gives me an understanding of the journey an individual goes through when recovering from either a new injury or an exacerbation of an existing one.
In addition to Symphony I began Concussion Coach - this is an online community for individuals anywhere in the world living with persistent concussion symptoms. I saw a need for education, empowerment, support, community and coaching -> which led to Concussion Coach's creation.
I am honoured to have won 2017 Entrepreneur of the Year, 2018 Vancouver Island Business & Community Achievement Awards, and to be a Nominee for the RBC Women's Entrepreneur Awards.
Physiotherapist / Clinic Owner
Functional Neurology * neuro rehab * concussion rehab * vestibular rehab IMS * Acupuncture * Orthopedics * Bobath practitioner * PWR!Therapist Concussion Educator for Nanaimo Minor Hockey
Soon after finishing my Physical Therapy degree at the University of British Columbia in 2013, I left Vancouver and moved to beautiful Vancouver Island.
I have worked in private practice since 2014, and enjoy working with clients from all walks of life. My treatment approach combines manual therapy, needling techniques, education, movement re-training, and exercise prescription with the goal of holistic treatment that addresses the underlying cause of dysfunction.
I am always eager to learn and have taken courses in acupuncture, dry needling, manual therapy, Neurokinetic Therapy, pelvic health and vestibular rehabilitation.
I am passionate about staying active and find it hard to sit still! In my spare time, I enjoy running, hiking, climbing, gymnastics, travel, baking, and, of course, the great outdoors.
Nanaimo is my home town and I thoroughly enjoy working and being a part of my community in a career that I am so passionate about. I received a Bachelors of Science degree in Kinesiology from the University of Victoria in 2008 and a Masters of Science degree in Physiotherapy from Queen’s University in 2011.
I was the Head Physiotherapist for the VI Raiders football team from 2011-2015 and have completed post graduate training in Advanced Orthopaedic Manual and Manipulative Therapy, Functional Dry Needling and hydrotherapy.
I am dedicated to provide individualized evidence-based treatments, which are centralized around each client’s goals. Along with Functional Dry Needling and Manual Therapy, I also believe in the integration of soft tissue techniques, taping and therapeutic exercise to achieve optimal patient outcomes and satisfaction.
I first came West from Ontario in 1999 to complete a B.Sc. in Kinesiology (with a minor in Psychology) at Simon Fraser University. I fell in love with the landscape and the lifestyle but academics and career took me to Montreal, to study at McGill University (M.Sc. and B.Sc PT). At a large teaching hospital, I enjoyed clinical and academic work with a Oncology Rehabilitation team for many years. As a researcher I presented at international conferences on the topic of cancer related fatigue and physical rehabilitation. I continue to work with my colleagues in Montreal and have recently published on the topics of "Home-based NMES to improve exercise performance in advanced lung cancer", as well as, "Effects of Qigong and Standard Exercise Therapy in Patients with Advanced Lung and Gastrointestinal Cancer".
Eventually the West was calling again and we moved first to Vancouver and finally to Vancouver Island. Since the move I have gained experience with the BC Health Care system, working at all levels of acute care (emergency to ICU to medical wards). Most recently I have worked at the NRGH InPatient Rehabilitation Unit (HIRU). Through out my career, I have worked with many interdiscplinary teams to support people to gain strength and function after life changing medical events. I look forward to expanding my experience in working with those who have made it through the acute illness and are continuing to recover months and even years later.
My balance of work and play includes activities to enjoy our beautiful outdoors with my family. Especially learning through the eyes of my young children and developping hobbies/activities such as photography and yoga in this wonderful setting.
pelvic health * neuro rehab * chronic pain * concussion rehab * post partum corrective exercise certificate * oncology rehab
Nicole completed her Bachelor degree in Biology with an emphasis on genetics and neurological development. After graduation, she volunteered at the Blusson Spinal Cord Centre in Vancouver researching the effect of gait training with a robotic walking aid for patients with incomplete spinal cord injuries. This furthered her interest in neurological injury and recovery, moving her forward to complete her Master of Physical Therapy degree.
For the last several years Nicole has worked at Abilities Neurological Rehabilitation and GF Strong. She has treated clients with a wide range of neurological and developmental concerns. She has also taken additional courses including vestibular rehab (the treatment of dizziness), pediatric specific courses and her Functional Dry Needling certification.
While living on the mainland, Nicole was an active volunteer coaching Challenger Ball, an adapted baseball league for children with physical and/or cognitive disabilities as well as a volunteer for Pacific Assistance Dogs Society, a non-profit organization that trains service dogs for people with physical disabilities.
Nowadays, when not taking courses or participating in research studies Nicole is enjoying island life; spending her spare time hiking, biking and camping with her family.
Hi, I’m James! I was born in Prince George B.C. and moved to Nanaimo when I was 13. After graduating from Cedar Community Secondary School, I went to VIU here in Nanaimo an received a Bachelor of Arts with a Major in Sport, Health, and Physical Education and Minor in Psychology. In 2016, I moved to Toronto to complete my Masters of Science in Physical Therapy. Since Fall 2018, I have been working at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in the Schulich Heart Program which involves rehabilitation for people undergoing invasive and non-invasive heart and vascular surgery. I’ve also worked in General Medicine, Oncology, Trauma, and ICU settings as part of my job.
I am excited to begin working at Symphony because my passion has always been to work with the neurological population even since my undergraduate years learning about human neuroanatomy and psychology; I believe in the philosophy that everything is interconnected, whether that is within us, our society, or life in general.
I approach Physiotherapy from a holistic model, focusing on the physical, mental, emotional, social, and spiritual. My time learning and working in Toronto I believe has given me insight into other cultures and beliefs and how to be aware of those differences, but also integrate them into my practice.
In my spare time, I enjoy self-education on topics such as environmental issues, finance, politics, and more. Recreationally, I enjoy anything that gets me moving! I enjoy playing ice hockey and field hockey regularly and have been known to surf from time to time on the east coast of the island.
At Symphony, I will be using my experience working with Stroke, Spinal Cord, ALS, GBS and other neurological populations to help you achieve your rehabilitation goals. I am currently taking courses on Concussion and Vestibular rehab prior to starting at Symphony in Spring 2020.
Susan completed her training in Speech-Language Pathology in 1988, augmenting her skills with a Masters Degree in Counselling Psychology in 2007. Her hospital career spans over 25 years - 23 of which were in a supervisory capacity - and experience across the continuum of neurological rehabilitation services. Susan has expertise in neurological disorders of swallowing and communication. A singer herself, the treatment of voice disorders represents a second area of specialization for Susan.
Susan's other passions include vegetable gardening/cooking, drawing, piano, cats and keeping up at the gym.
Renee is a Registered Clinical Counsellor in good standing with the BC Association of Clinical Counsellor. She completed her Master's in Clinical Counselling & Vocational Rehabilitation at the University of British Columbia. Renee has a special interest in trauma recovery, helping her clients safely process distressing events and learn strategies for self-regulation. She successfully integrates aspects of EMDR and CBT to address symptoms of anxiety, depression and chronic pain, improving the resiliency of the autonomic nervous system. She is known for her ability to provide a calm, reassuring environment within which clients can heal, discover and create solutions that result in increased quality of life.
Originally from Southern Africa and relocated to Canada 2002. Nanaimo has been my home for the majority of those years, after the birth of of my daughter in 2015 and several years spent living in the Okanogan and Manitoba I returned back to Nanaimo to be close to family and friends. My daughter and I like to spend most of our time outdoors hiking, kayaking and keeping active and enjoy being close to the mountains and the ocean.
After many years spent in customer service and health care I have a strong passion for helping others and creating a great experience for clients. I am excited to be apart of such an amazing positive team here at Symphony
Martina is an impassioned Occupational Therapist (OT), excited and inspired to create new and innovative ways to serve her patients’ health care needs. Martina was raised on Vancouver Island and is thrilled to be living in beautiful Campbell River. On her off time she loves exploring the outdoors on hiking trips, biking and running local trails.
Martina received her Masters in OT from Queens University. Through personal and professional opportunities Martina has developed an interest for working with cognitive rehabilitation, particularly with Stroke and Traumatic Brain Injury. Continued professional development to further her clinical practice skills and stay up to date with the latest research and best practice is a priority for Martina. She has taken additional training including a course in Concussion Management, Enabling Occupation Through the Assessment & Treatment of Cognitive Impairments and additional training through the Canadian International Bobath Association for treatment of neurological conditions.
Martina also has a passion for fitness and yoga. She has worked as a fitness instructor for the past 10 years teaching a variety of land and aquatic based programs. She is a certified yoga instructor and is completing her 800 hr Therapeutic Yoga Instructor training.
At Symphony Rehab Martina uses her training as an OT in conjunction with her training as a yoga therapist and fitness instructor to work with clients to improve their movement, decrease their pain & release stress from the body and mind.
My family and I left Vancouver for the slower pace of Vancouver Island in 2003. Since moving here I have had two children (now teens!) and I love the opportunities that Nanaimo provides for them, be it sports, arts, getting out into nature or out on the water. I enjoy being outside as much as possible and love exploring the numerous trails around Nanaimo with my dog Madee. I am passionate about keeping fit through fun activities like hiking and kickboxing and motivating others to get out and be active.
Having worked in several different medical/dental offices through the years I can truly say I enjoy getting to know and interacting with clients. I look forward to helping you when you come in to see us at Symphony!
Kara is a Registered Dietitian and Nutritionist with the College of Dietitians of British Columbia and a member of Dietitians of Canada. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Food, Nutrition and Health with honours from the University of British Columbia in 2012, and a Master of Science in Applied Nutrition from Northeastern University in 2017.
Kara works as both a clinical dietitian with Fraser Health and a consulting dietitian with Symphony Rehab, North Shore Sports Medicine, and Simon Fraser University Sports Medicine. She focuses on providing evidence-based nutrition counseling for a wide variety of clients. Areas of expertise include diabetes education, performance nutrition, heart health, weight loss/gain.
Kara also is a certified diabetes educator, holds her Food Safe Level One and Level Two certificates, and has completed the International Olympic Committee’s Diploma in Sports Nutrition program
Kara is a network representative for the Dietitians of Canada Sports Nutrition Network and a member of the Collegiate and Professional Sports Dietitians Association.
Outside of work Kara enjoys running, hiking, rock climbing, cooking and photography. She is also a regular volunteer run leader and presenter with Sport Med BC’s Sun Run In-Training program.