Align Integration & Movement
Susan McLaughlin is a physical therapist, a pelvic health specialist, and the owner of ALIGN. People usually come to ALIGN for pain relief, but what they really walk away with is a greater understanding of their body. Susan is passionate about facilitating clients to tune into their nervous system and habitual daily activities that affect postural alignment, tissue function and movement. With awareness, clients can create new patterns to build healthier tissues for structural support and fluid movement. Ultimately, the goal of ALIGN is to help people learn self care strategies to get out of pain, improve function, and become more vital. Because when we have the tools to heal ourselves, that is when we thrive! You can find out more on her website: www.alignforhealth.com.
My intrigue with the human body evolved after an injury sustained in a car accident. I experienced constant back and nerve pain down my right leg and into my foot. I tried conservative approaches: chiropractic, physical therapy, and a nerve root injection to no effect. My solution was surgery. And for a few years I was “fixed”; I was 25 at the time. Gradually, back pain returned as well as periodic SI dysfunction, and pain became the focus of my life for 10 years. My pain ranged from a moderate continuous inconvenience to short episodes of incapacitation: unable to walk or stand up straight.
In 2011 my perspective changed. I began to be more mindful about how I moved and used my body on a daily basis. I realized that I had a lot of tension in my nervous system and muscles. Within 3 months of being attentive to my postural alignment and performing other movement correctives, I was not in pain anymore.
At the time of my accident in 1994 I was fumbling with what I wanted to “do” in life. I was a college graduate with a degree in english, working for UPS slinging boxes to make my living. I had relied on my body, and because of the pain, I couldn’t use it in the job I had chosen. This experience placed me into self-reflection: I discovered that I wanted a profession that was focused on health, wellness and taking care of the body. I wanted to support other people to learn about their own bodies, to get out of pain and become vital. And so I began the process of getting an education to become a physical therapist.
I have been practicing physical therapy since 2001. In 2012 I started my own business. I transitioned away from the major medical healthcare system to a holistic and eclectic collection of skills, all of which fit under the title of my business name: ALIGN Integration | Movement. As a practitioner I meet each client with the empathy and compassion that I, too, have sat deeply imbedded in the suffering of pain, and have been able to transform my body, mind, and spirit to get out of it. You don't have to live in pain!