by Jamie Duran


Throughout our lives we have always heard commands like “Stand up straight!”  “Act like a book is on your head!” “Suck your belly in!”  

As time goes on, and your mother is not there to remind you, our good posture is easily forgotten. We tend to sink into a more “comfortable” slouched position when standing, sitting, walking, driving, etc. This “comfortable” position may give us a temporary relief but it brings a high risk of pain and injuries. A forward head position causing a change in the gentle curve of the neck causing a pinch in the mid cervical spine.  Over time this can cause a pinched nerve and radiating pain into the arm! The risk costs way more than temporary comfort especially because it can be easily prevented with a few simple exercises.  

Studies have identified impaired activation of the deep cervical flexor muscles, the longus colli and longus capitis, in people with neck pain. It has been shown that retraining these deep cervical muscles will decrease neck symptoms and increase the stability of the cervical spine improving the ability to maintain a balanced, pain free posture of the cervical spine. (Falla, D., Jull, G., Russell, T., Vicenzino, B., & Hodges, P. 2007).

Correct posture is extremely important for a pain free lifestyle. Good posture will help reverse current or future injuries and reduce neck pain. Implementing postural stretches and exercises into your everyday routine will aid in prevention for any new pain and injuries.

It’s easy! Add these simple exercises into your daily routine (even 5 minutes a day) and be mindful of good posture in your everyday life.

Practice sitting up straight! Stay mindful about your sitting posture, Chest up, belly in, shoulders back, and chin back. Try not to sit for extended periods of time, even just standing up and walking around for a few seconds will make a big difference. Set an alarm to remind you to sit up straight and to get up and walk around. 

Chin tucks will help strengthen your cervical postural muscles and prevent a “forward leaning head” doing 3 sets of 10 tucks a day takes no time and will help tremendously.

Upper trap and levator stretches can be preformed throughout the whole day. Not only do they feel amazing but also help loosen up those stiff muscles from bad posture.

Rows, extensions and scapular retractions, these three exercises are key to keeping your posture strong. Keeping your postural muscles strong will make standing up straight easier and you will be able to think about it less because your body will naturally pull you upright. Adding a resistance band it optimal but not necessary, just make sure you SQUEEZE! Preform 3 sets 10 for best results.

Standing pelvic tilts will not only help engage our core when we stand but also keep you mindful of good lumbar posture as well. We tend to stick our bottoms out when we stand up straight for good posture, however it is necessary to keep a neutral spine, and practicing these tucks will give us the correct posture we need. 

Doorway or pec stretch is important especially in today’s technology driven world (phone and computer use). Our chest is in a constant caved position in turn will shorten these muscles and make it harder to stand and sit correctly. Using any doorway, place your arms on either side at a 90-degree angle and step into the stretch. You should feel a nice comfortable stretch along your chest and shoulders. Pop into any door you see throughout your day and aim for 60 seconds comfortable stretch.  

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Falla, D., Jull, G., Russell, T., Vicenzino, B., & Hodges, P. (2007). Effect of Neck Exercise on Sitting Posture in Patients With Chronic Neck Pain. Physical Therapy,87(4), 408-417. doi:10.2522/ptj.20060009



dr. Craig weyer presents at sun city hilton head island

Wellness Institute Managing Partner Craig Weyer, PT, DPT, M.ED, ATC, COMPT,  recently gave his second presentation at Sun City Hilton Head about Posture: A Real Pain in the Neck.  

The lecture covered the importance of maintaining good posture, osteoarthritis and the associated mechanisms that cause pain. He discussed proactive steps to improve this painful, limiting condition.

We'd like to say "thank you" to Cherie Bronsky and the Sun City Hilton Head Community Association for organizing the free presentation for residents. It was a great turnout, and we hope that the material was useful to all in attendance. 

PT lecture

Dr. Weyer is available to speak to a variety of organizations. Please contact the Wellness Institute at 843-547-4058 for more information. 


Congratulations to Andrea Schultz on her Board Certification!

Andrea Schultz, PT, DPT, has become the first Board-Certified Clinical Specialist in Women’s Health Physical Therapy (WCS) in the low country.  She has also added a Certification in Dry Needling to her repertoire, allowing her to expand her treatment intervention options for both pelvic and orthopedic conditions.  Our pelvic and pregnancy programs continue to grow under her leadership.  Congratulations!!

Meet Our Massage Therapists

Call us to find out about our Introductory Massage Discounts

Welcome John Perez:

John Perez was first introduced to massage therapy as a client while on a golf trip to Las Vegs. He studied massage therapy in Maumee, Ohio at Stautzenberger College. Upon graduating he worked in a chiropractic office from 2007 to 2010 in the Toledo, Ohio area, where he performed Myofascial Release work on clients prior to their Chiropractic adjustments. For the next 6 years, he worked at the Wellness Center in Findlay, Ohio with an instructor with the Freedom from Pain Institute. John further continued his education and studied Myoskeletal Alignment Therapy under Dr. Eric Dalton who developed this therapy treatment method. Now here at The Wellness Institute and their team of Physical Therapists and specialists he joins them and brings his knowledge and experience. John is Certified with the Titleist Performance Institute from Oceanside, California. This certification allows him to screen and evaluate the clients posture and movement patterns and restrictions. TPI golf screening is very useful in pin-pointing the mobility restrictions that inhibit a golfer from achieving their full playing potential. Once the movement restrictions are uncovered John is able to improve the muscle imbalances allowing for a more efficient golf swing. Additionally, he is a Certified Myoskeletal Alignment Therapist which also provides relief from pain and discomfort. John has also continued his education in the fields of Sports Massage, Medical Cupping, Traction work with Inversion table, Kinesio/Rock taping, Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization (IASTM), Myofascial Release Techniques, and Full Body Golf/Sports Stretching. This additional training has increased his knowledge and ability within the Advanced Massage Therapy and Bodywork fields and has enabled him to work with clients and athletes at all levels. He is ready to treat clients here at the Wellness Institute.

Cathy Lortie:

Cathy holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies / Cultural Studies. She holds two basic teacher’s certifications and an advanced certification in yoga. She is also a graduate of the Technical College of the Lowcountry Massage Therapy program, and is licensed by the state of South Carolina. She received training in Swedish, Deep Tissue, Pre-Natal and Sports Massage.  Cathy has been with the Wellness Institute for 4 years and teaches Yoga classes as well as being a Massage Therapist.


Arthroscopic Surgery for Meniscal Tears May Be Unnecessary in Many Cases

Could one of the most popular surgical procedures in the United States be unnecessary many of the approximately 700,000 times it is performed each year?

A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine suggests that might be the case for arthroscopic surgery to repair a torn meniscus—particularly if the tear is a result of wear and aging, as opposed to a traumatic event.

As the New York Times reported ("Common Knee Surgery Does Very Little for Some, Study Suggests" - December 25, 2013), a Finnish study of 146 patients between the ages of 35 and 65 found that those who had arthroscopic surgery had no better level of satisfaction 1 year later than had others in the study who had undergone a mock surgical procedure.

"Those who do research have been gradually showing that this popular operation is not of very much value," Dr David Felson told the Times.

Therapist specializes in urinary urge and stress incontinence

 Pelvic Health Specialist

Pelvic Health Specialist

The Wellness Institute would like to introduce Kelly Linzenbold as the newest member of our pelvic rehab team.  Kelly came to us one year ago from Pittsburgh, Pa., as an orthopedic PTA.

Kelly's training with the American Physical Therapy Association's Section on Women's Health qualifies her to treat men and women with urinary urge and stress incontinence.  Our full pelvic rehab program will continue to include treatment for all pelvic diagnosis as before including: pelvic pain, constipation, fecal incontinence, lumbosacral and coccyx pain among many others through our primary PT, Andrea Schultz.

We are excited about the expansion of our pelvic rehab team as it will improve scheduling options for our patients, and thus speed their recovery.  

wellness institute supports American Heart Association's Palmetto Heart Walk

We are partnering with Covert Aire to raise funds for American Heart Association's Palmetto Heart Walk. Purchase a T-Shirt and help us raise money for this amazing organization.

Email or call 843-547-4058 to get your shirt! 

Make sure you order by Monday, April 2! Print out the form below, or just call us using the number above. We're proud to support healthy initiatives in our community.

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Client runs Palmetto Bluff Marathon with training help from Wellness Institute


One of our clients, Ron Vargas, recently ran the Palmetto Bluff Marathon. We're so happy that he finished the marathon and ran a good race! We helped him with some issues and guided him in the right direction during his training. CONGRATULATIONS, RON!


Here's what he had to say...

"I want to thank you & Jen to help get ready and finish the full marathon! My time was 4:25 and yes, was rough last 3 miles, but I did follow your advice that helped get through the entire race. Again, thanks."

If you are a runner looking for training assistance or help with therapeutic needs, please reach out to us at the Wellness Institute. Our skilled therapists will help you heal and provide tips and at-home exercises to assist in your marathon training. Many of our therapists are athletes, so their experience is beneficial for fellow runners! 

Call 843-547-4058 to make an appointment for a free screening.

“I want to thank you & Jen to help get ready and finish the full marathon! My time was 4:25 and yes, was rough last 3 miles, but I did follow your advice that helped get through the entire race. Again, thanks.”

Dr. Weyer provides therapy at international rugby tournament

rugby tournament

USA Sevens Rugby is the largest international rugby event in North America, featuring teams representing 16 countries. Our managing partner Dr. Craig Weyer was invited to the tournament to be the physiotherapist for four teams: The Samurai U.S Select Team, Samurai Elite Team, Samurai International Team and Samurai.  The players make the team by invitation only, which selects successful international and top level club players from all over the world. The team competes, successfully, against World Sevens Series teams and other international sides at the very top level.

Dr. Weyer assisted the team members with physical therapy needs over the weekend, and received rave reviews! Even if you aren't an elite rugby player, you can also benefit from our therapists' skills talents! Make an appointment for a free screening today: 843-547-4058.

Experience the benefits of infrared sauna therapy at the wellness institute

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The Wellness Institute is one of two local facilities that has an infrared therapy available for sessions. In addition to revitalizing your cells, sauna treatments pull toxins out of your body via sweating.  Toxins are often stored in excess fat cells underneath the skin. Not surprisingly, one of the functions of this excess fat is to keep toxins which are not eliminated fast enough through natural means away from your body’s vital organs.  As sweating releases these toxins, the excess fat which was kept in your body no longer has a reason for sticking around, and your body flushes it out.

Infrared sauna therapy is not limited to just detoxification. Near Infrared has been shown to strengthen the immune system by stimulating white blood cell production, promoting cell regeneration, and reducing cell death. 

“I have had continuous pain since surgery in March of 2017. I have been doing PT weekly. Even though I have become stronger I tried the infrared sauna to seek pain relief. I have been coming to the sauna for 2 1/2 months. Although I still have pain, I am getting relief overall. I have a feeling of well-being after a session.”
— Deb M.,, Client in February 2018

It’s also been shown to significantly improve skin health and appearance, and help wounds heal faster. Studies have shown significant improvements in skin appearance after just 12 weeks of near infrared treatments. Participants experienced a reduction in wrinkles and crow’s feet, as well as improved overall skin tone, including softness, smoothness, elasticity, clarity and firmness.

The relaxation program uses NIR, MIR and FIR wavelengths to relieve muscle tension, induce relaxation and reduce overall stress, while the cardiovascular program uses all three to increase heart rate and circulation to promote healthy blood pressure.

  • Near infrared improves cell health – The short wavelength, near infrared (NIR), penetrates the skin’s surface more effectively than the other two. That's why it's highly effective at stimulating collagen production to reduce fine lines and wrinkles, and improving overall skin tone, elasticity and clarity. That’s why the mPulse uses LED lights to transmit NIR. At this wavelength, LEDs can trigger a natural biochemical reaction in the cells that stimulate growth and repair.
  • Mid infrared reduces inflammation – Inflammation can be the root of so many symptoms. Mid infrared (MIR) is a longer wavelength that can penetrate deeper into the body’s soft tissue where inflammation occurs. MIR helps expand blood vessels and increases circulation, allowing more oxygen to reach injured areas of the body. This reduces pain and speeds the healing process.  
  • Far infrared detoxifies the body – The longest wavelength, far infrared (FIR), reaches deepest into the body, where toxins are stored. By raising your core body temperature, FIR stimulates the sweat glands, resulting in a deep, detoxifying sweat that leaves you feeling revitalized. An added perk is that as part of the body’s thermo-regulatory process, sweating increases heart rate, cardiac output and metabolic rate, which means you’re also burning calories!

Schedule an appointment for infrared therapy by calling 843-547-4058.

“I find the IR exceptionally helpful in managing the pain of sciatica. It’s like taking an Advil but no pills needed.  I’ve just started the weight loss program and hope to notice loss in a month. Plus, my skin looks luminous! (Many compliments).”

— Chris M., Client in February 2018

Dr. Weyer presents lecture at Sun City Hilton Head

Wellness Institute Managing Partner Craig Weyer, PT, DPT, M.ED, ATC, COMPT,  recently gave a presentation at Sun City Hilton Head about holistic treatments for pain management and pain prevention.

Dr. Weyer explained that you can be proactive when it comes to pain by getting an evaluation with a physical therapist, maximizing movement with the help of a therapist, and participating in recovery with a rehabilitation specialist. He also suggested utilizing physical therapy for pain relief instead of using prescribed opioids and before considering surgery. 

He also suggested that treating pain, through the use of opioids, without treating the underlying issues is not proactive.  This is confirmed by the recent warnings from the CDC and AMA of the danger and long-term ineffectiveness of the use of opioids and that utilizing skilled physical therapy to give the body a chance to heal should be attempted before considering surgery.  An active lifestyle with daily exercise and stretching is critical to maintaining good health for muscles and joints.

We'd like to say "thank you" to Cherie Bronsky and the Sun City Hilton Head Community Association for organizing the free presentation for residents. It was a great turnout, and we hope that the material was useful to all in attendance. 

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Dr. Weyer is available to speak to a variety of organizations. Please contact the Wellness Institute at 843-547-4058 for more information. 

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A native of South Africa, Dr. Weyer brings a unique blend of experience to the Wellness Institute. Originally trained as an officer in the Airborne Forces, Craig retired from the military with the rank of Captain and was recruited into the business arena to manage a corporate sales team. He received a diploma in Business Management at Damelin Business College but decided that his interests lay in a different direction. In 1994, he returned to college to study physiotherapy. After graduating Summa Cum Laude from GC&SU receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in Exercise Science and Sports Medicine, he obtained his national certification in Athletic Training (ATC), followed by a Masters in Physical Therapy (MPT) from AASU. Craig has since undergone additional specialization and completed the Australian Physiotherapy program in Orthopedic Manual Therapy specializing in spine rehabilitation with emphasis on lumbar and cervical dysfunction (COMT). He received his doctorate from the University of St. Augustine, specializing further in manual based therapy and has his certification in the use of Dry Needling (Cert DN).  Craig is also a guest lecturer at AASU in Savannah. As a 27-year veteran in the game of rugby, Craig is the team physical therapist for the USA developmental team, the Panthers (USA Rugby South).  In his spare time, Craig enjoys the outdoors and an active lifestyle including competing in Ironman distance triathlons, traveling internationally, and the occasional golf game.

Wellness Institute sponsors 5K for charity at Okatie ale house in bluffton

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The Wellness Institute was proud to sponsor the Okatie Ale House 5K on Super Bowl Sunday in Bluffton, S.C. We enjoy being involved in our local running community in Okatie, Hilton Head and Bluffton, and supporting great causes. The annual race benefits efforts to fight pediatric cancer. 

Congrats to our Wellness Institute Director Craig Weyer for winning first place in his age group in the 5K!

Reap the benefits of a group training program at the Wellness Institute

What is Group Training? 
Resistance training workouts with just the right amount of cardio to help you with goals like fat loss, weight control, performance, and fitness. Sized small enough to be personalized while still working among other members. This is NOT just another fitness class, and it’s not a cardio class of sorts. Our class size limit is 15 people in a session.

So what are the benefits of Group Training? There are a handful.
Fun and social setting (or personal) - want to interact with others when you workout? Not a problem. Prefer to workout without distractions of others? Just the right-sized group will allow you space and ability to focus on your session, too. Meet new people, or bring a friend, coworker, or family member. 

Support and accountability - keeping the size moderate allows for things to be personal, which also means coaching that is semi-personal. Check-ins, communication, recommendations, guidelines, and pertinent education is available to all participants. Plus, you’re provided workouts when you miss class that you may do on your own at home or your community gym.

Structure - though each session is different, most group training programs run on some sort of program design structure. At Wellness Institute Fitness, we run on a 3- to 4-day training split, targeting the body in different ways over the week.

training class at wellness institute bluffton South Carolina

group training

Achieve your fitness goals with our help and the encouragement of your fellow classmates!

Accommodates Variety - all ages and fitness levels are welcomed and fit in, as well as both men and women.

Targets Your Goals - including fitness, fat loss, weight control, performance and strength.

Affordable - you’ll get your money’s worth doing a group workout while receiving personal attention and coaching. Workouts break down to between $5 and $15 per session. An average personal training session can start at $45 and run to $100+, which adds up quickly.

Quality and Results - focus is always on form and proper execution of exercise. It’s important to be challenged in your workouts. A coach can ensure you’re doing the exercises in the correct way, which you may not get in a large fitness class. 

Prime time to workout - in a group class, you can work out at prime time of the day when the coach is usually highly sought after.

Contact Rachel Cantore for information on our group training programs: 630-300-8289, or

Physical Therapy is As Effective as Surgery for Degenerative Disk Disease

Physical Therapy is Equal to Surgery for Spinal Stenosis

Thinking of going under the knife for lumbar spinal stenosis (LSS)?

According to a new study, you can have equal success skipping surgery and going straight to physical therapy.

spinal stenosis

"Surgery is a riskier procedure, with about a 15% complication rate, and half of those are life-threatening," said Anthony Delitto, PT, PhD, FAPTA, in a Reuters article about the study ("Physical therapy may be as good as surgery for common back problem" – April 6, 2015). "It isn't a life-risking procedure to do physical therapy," at least give it a chance. 

Delitto led the study, published in the April 2015 issue of Annals of Internal Medicine, which is the first to directly compare a single, evidence-based physical therapy regimen with decompression surgery among patients who agree to be randomly assigned to either approach. Previous studies have focused on comparing surgical and (mostly unspecified) "nonsurgical" elements, and allowed some patients to self-select their treatment groups.  Make sure your physical therapist has the right training and post graduate training in spine treatment ideally a certified manual therapist.

In an editorial that accompanies the study, it was concluded of the 2 treatment approaches, "These data suggest that patients with LSS should be offered a rigorous, standardized [physical therapy] regimen. Those who do not improve and ultimately consider surgery, should be informed that the benefits of surgery are likely to diminish over time."


Physical Therapy: A Good First Choice Before Surgery for Rotator Cuff Tears

Why get surgery if you don’t need it? Those who experience nontraumatic rotator cuff tears, for example, would do just as well with "conservative treatment" such as physical therapy.


That's according to a study published in Bone and Joint Journal ("Treatment of nontraumatic rotator cuff tears: A randomized controlled trial with one-year clinical results" – January 2014), which found that patients who received physical therapy alone for rotator cuff tears showed similar rates of physical improvement and patient satisfaction to those who received arthroscopic surgery or open surgical repair, combined with physical therapy.