University of California Irvine Graduate Specializes in Dance Injury Prevention and Rehab

Anna Reiser, PT, DPT, who earned a Doctorate of Physical Therapy from the nationally-ranked Northern Arizona University program returns home to join the staff at Progressive Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation in Irvine.

“We are excited to welcome Anna to our staff at Progressive Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation,” said Michael McKindley, DPT and owner of the clinic. “Anna is a talented young physical therapist with deep ties to the dance community in Orange County. Her double major in biologic science and her BFA in dance performance from the University of California Irvine makes her ideally suited to provide expert care to dancers, gymnasts and other performance art athletes.”

Anna grew up in south Orange County attending Aliso Niguel High School and dancing at the Maple Conservatory in Irvine. She continued her training and performing in the dance department at UC Irvine. For her senior thesis at she choreographed an original dance concert inspired by a class she took in neurobiology of learning and memory.

“I am thrilled with this opportunity to join the Progressive PT team that has such a highly regarded dance rehab program,” Anna said. “It has been my dream to combine dance and physical therapy and now I will be able to do that.”

“In my freshman year of high school I was very interested in biology and I wanted to find a career to combine that with my love of dance. UCI, which has an incredible dance program, offered me that opportunity with a double major. I have always been fascinated by the movement of the human body and began learning more about physical therapy as an aide during college. After graduation, I knew for sure I wanted to be a PT to help people decrease their pain, learn more about their bodies, and return to doing the things they love.”

She says her favorite discipline is ballet, but has also been trained in modern, contemporary, jazz, tap, and musical theatre. A highlight of her training was attending the Radio City Rockettes summer intensive program in New York city. She continues to take dance classes when able. During her time in Flagstaff obtaining her DPT she was able to teach dance classes and hopes to continue that effort with lectures and instructions on dance injury prevention and rehabilitation.

Progressive Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation has been a highly regarded private outpatient rehab clinic in the Orange County community for more than 20 years. Providing personalized care Progressive Physical Therapy combines evidence-based scientific with extensive clinical experience to develop individualized treatment plans to reduce pain and restore motion and function for an improved quality of life.

In addition to dance, Anna will provide treatments for orthopedic and sports injury rehab, chronic pain, SI joint dysfunction along with neurological rehab for movement disorders. With a teamwork approach to her patients, she feels it’s important to understand their goals in the rehab process and designing personalized treatment plans.

“I believe in listening to a patient’s story and treating them as a whole person, not just their impairment,” she said. “I see the patient and therapist as a team, working together to identify the problems and then finding creative solutions. It’s important for the patients to feel better, but also to understand their pain and how they can take an active role in their recovery.”


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