Tell us a little about yourself: I have always had an immense passion for the health and fitness industries. The foundation of nutrition and the importance of fitness was instilled in me at a very young age. My mother, a novice body builder and competitor, inspired me to follow a journey of longevity and wellness. In 2007, I graduated #1 in my class at Florida International University with my Bachelor’s Degree in Dietetics and Nutrition. As my desire for a holistic approach to healing continued to grow, I pursued a Massage Therapy License graduating as Valedictorian at the Acupuncture and Massage College.
Passionate about movement and wellness, I went on to become a NCSF Certified Personal Trainer and also graduated #1 in my class as a Physical Therapist Assistant from the highest ranked program from Miami Dade College. With experience in all avenues of care, I remain committed to constantly growing and learning, keeping in mind my life’s motto – “to change the world one person at a time.”
What makes you happy? I believe happiness is a mindset and I’m always ready with a smile. Walking the bridge, feeling the breeze in the air and the sunshine on my skin are priceless. Unwinding in the kitchen with my music blasting, creative juices flowing, and preparing delicious meals for the week makes me happy. However, I am most content when someone leaves my treatment room feeling like a new person, ready to take on the world!
What does a normal day look like for you? The melodious sound of my alarm dings at 5:45am, I walk into the bathroom, look into the mirror and say out loud what I am most grateful for. I find my way to the kitchen and drink about 3 glasses of my special water elixir (RO water, apple cider vinegar, spirulina, aloe, and ginger puree) and have my morning brew. Once hydration sets in, a workout session is dominated! Next, I jump in the shower, get ready, and then I am off to work. A shift can run anywhere from 6-12 hours, it is fast-paced and keeps me on my toes. Once I get home, I kick off my shoes, jump into the shower and then find my way to the kitchen. A deep pleasure is felt making my own food, listening to an audible book or podcast, and then engage in a yoga or meditation session. I conclude each evening with gratitude and a success list for the following day.
You do a variety of work; can you share what you do in each? At Mount Sinai Medical Center, I work as an Acute Care Therapist, enhancing health, education, and function. Acute care therapy is the treatment one receives after a severe injury or illness, urgent medical condition, or after surgery. As you can imagine, being hospitalized is no light matter. My role is to be their “cheerleader,” with the goal of optimizing their functional independence for a safe return home. Together, we perform ADL’s (Activities of Daily Living) such as: gait training, transfer training, bed mobility, strength training, neuromuscular reeducation, self-care, etc. I work with an array of patients such as: cardiac, gastro-intestinal, orthopedic, cancer, neuro, ICU (Intensive Care Unit), failure to thrive, psych, etc.
Outside of the hospital, I work as an Outpatient Physical Therapist Assistant (PTA), Massage Therapist, and Personal Trainer. All 3 coexist to embody a “Wholistic” approach to movement and the musculoskeletal system.
As a PTA, optimizing movement, balance, coordination, mobility, and stability are key. Therapeutic exercises/interventions, joint mobilization, and soft tissue manipulation are performed, along with education on safety, injury prevention, recovery, and developing a plan of care to meet the individual’s needs.
Personal training is similar to physical therapy (PT). Both professions keep you active and working on creating a plan of care to help you achieve your fitness/physical goals, however, personal trainers focus on physique and do not specifically work with injuries.
Massage therapy is an effective tool for soft tissue manipulation and stress relief. Through my rhythmic flow, I am able to help create energy balance and promote relaxation. My background primarily consists of: Swedish, Thai, Deep Tissue, Medical, Prenatal, Ayurvedic, and Shiatsu Massage techniques. Swedish Massage is very relaxing, helping to improve blood circulation, and reduce tension in muscles. Thai Massage can be described as being taken through a beautiful yoga flow, opening your energy channels, reducing restrictions, and rebalancing. Deep Tissue is similar to Swedish Massage but is performed with slow strokes and sustained pressure to move deeper into the tissue. Medical Massage is used for a specific ailment diagnosed by a professional. Prenatal is performed on an expecting mother, promoting comfort and wellness, increasing immune function, improving uterine blood supply, etc. Ayruvedic Massage is done with specialty oils and specific strokes promoting balance within the mind, body, and spirit constitution. Shiatsu is literally translated to “finger pressure.” Pressure is applied to specific points on the body, correcting disharmonies and restore balance.
What is your favorite stretch or movement? Mobility work is an essential part of programming, there are so many valuable movements, it is challenging to choose only one.
My top 3 favorites are:
1. World’s Greatest Stretch w/ thoracic rotations
2. Dynamic Hamstring Sweeps
3. Around the World
If you weren’t doing PT what would you be doing? If I wasn’t doing PT, or bodywork, I would go back to school to become a Functional Medicine Practioner. I truly believe in treating the body as a whole entity and we must take care of our mind, body, and spirit for wellness to take place. Functional Medicine helps to discover the cause of the issue versus just “putting a band aid” and covering up the symptoms.
What are your top 5 must do’s for your body?
- HYDRATE yourself with clean water
- MOVE your body EVERY DAY (doing whatever makes you feel empowered and alive- min 2 min/hour awake)
- EAT the rainbow of clean vegetables and fruits- high quality proteins
- Get good quality SLEEP (dark room, electronics off, cool temperature)
- RECOVERY: Massage, Stretch Therapy, Breathing, Gratitude, Positive Affirmations
What is your advice to the couch potato who wants to get up off their butts but keeps finding excuses? Set it or forget it! Put an alarm on your phone TO MOVE, so you don’t even have to think about it. Making things easy, will help you to create lasting changes. If an alarm isn’t for you, make sure you are moving your whole body during commercials or at the beginning/ end of each show on TV.
Our bodies are made to move and as we move, we release endorphins which make us feel good. And why wouldn’t you want to feel good?!
Do you eat healthy too? (if so) What is your favorite healthy: Yes, I do eat healthy most of the time. Food is another one of my passions and this girl LOVES to EAT!!
Breakfast: Omlette (1-2 eggs, sautéed onions, garlic, spinach, riced cauliflower (adds bulk without the calories), spices, cooked in 1 tsp coconut oil) + 1/2 c frozen organic blueberries, 1/4c frozen pineapple, 1/4c cacao nibs, 1/4c baruka nuts
Lunch: SALAD- organic spinach, spring mix, wild caught smoked salmon or sardines, raw onions, garlic, pickles, chopped date, honey goat cheese, sliced steamed almonds, ¼ avocado, chia seeds with balsamic vinegar. Side: Kimchi and celery with hummus
Dinner: Wild caught sockeye salmon with the skin on (Air fryer so the skin is crispy) in spices and onions
Side: Honey roasted balsamic brussel sprouts with onions, garlic, salt pepper, chipotle, bacon, dates, almond slivers and whole roasted cauliflower in pink Himalayan salt (First boiled then baked until soft)
Dessert: Theo 85% cacao bar (Not to be eaten all at once)
What do you like to do on your down time, any hobbies? In my down time, I spend a lot of time in the kitchen, creating quick and easy healthy recipes, learning (books/ articles/ etc- primarily health/wellness and Spanish), coming up with fun exercises, and enjoying art.
Can you tell us something funny/interesting that has happened at work? Some of the remarks my clients make when I take them through a stretch sequence are quite memorable. I continue to find it so interesting how we can be so restricted and not even realize it. It is amazing restricted we can become, but taking the time for yourself each day, can make the world of a difference on your overall well-being.
How can we contact you for appointments?
Kori Baxter C- (305) 775-0961 Email- Kori@chainworkphysio.com Chainwork and Adapt Gym
14901 NE 20 Ave North Miami, 33181