Bonnie is 64 years old and says that she is someone who has “a body that is vulnerable to injuries and issues.”
In 2005, she tore her meniscus. She had surgery but no physical therapy afterward. She says that she continued to have trouble with it and developed a bad gait pattern as a result.
In 2010, she began to have pain in her left foot, which turned out to be a bone spur that required surgery.
In 2015, x-rays revealed that Bonnie’s hips and knees were not in good shape. Her doctor suggested bilateral hip replacement and two total knee replacements.
“Fix Me Up!”
Bonnie met each challenge head-on.
She had the hip surgeries three months apart in 2015 and then had both knees done in 2019. She says she was tired of being in pain all the time and was ready to do what it took to move beyond it.
Bonnie began coming to KCP about a year prior to her bone spur surgery, at the recommendation of her primary care physician. Through the years, Bonnie had gone elsewhere for PT and was unhappy with the lack of one-on-one care. When she started with KCP, she found the care to be more personalized than at “Big Box PT and hospital PT” environments. She says, “Visits to those places always felt formulaic. You have X injury, so you get X protocol and X sessions for your treatment.”
At KCP, she received manual care and customized treatments, which she says was “a whole new thing.”
As she approached the major surgeries, Bonnie says, “Every step of the way, Joyce and Joy would tell me all the things I needed to know.”
Bonnie says she would come back to KCP after each surgery and say, “Fix me up!”
“Stronger than Ever”
Bonnie has undergone many surgeries and worked hard in rehab after each one. She says, “I am in better shape now than I was when I was younger. I’m stronger than ever.”
Physical therapist Joy Pfuhl says, “Bonnie’s success is due to her commitment, work ethic, and optimistic attitude,” she says. “I wish I could bottle that.”
Although she receives compliments for her can-do attitude, Bonnie admits that it was a difficult and lengthy process to get to this point.
She was in pain for weeks after each surgery, and each day took lots of effort. “It was hard to maintain positivity, but everyone at KCP was always so positive and encouraging. Thankfully, everything just kept getting better and better.”
Commitment to Fitness
To overcome her physical challenges, Bonnie says she needed to change her attitude toward fitness – dramatically.
“I hated PE as a kid,” she says. “I did like swimming, but I was always very uncoordinated outside of the water. My perspective has changed 180 degrees on fitness now.”
Throughout her rehabilitation, Bonnie participated in stretching and strengthening exercises. As she gained mobility and saw her pain decrease, she developed an appreciation for the process.
She joined the fitness training program at KCP and has been participating in both virtual and in-person classes for over five years. She’s taken “breaks” only for her surgeries and rehab. Each time she is cleared, she returns to her 2-3 class per week regimen. She has progressed to feeling stronger now than ever before. In addition, she says, “I have more self-confidence and a better self-image now.”
She attends both in-person and virtual training classes, depending on her schedule.
“It’s important to be in those groups working out,” she says. “It’s good to have the accountability to show up. And I like working out at KCP instead of a big gym. Everyone there is relatable. No matter who they are, they’ve got issues! I’ve found my people!”
“It’s the Little Things”
She says that she’s stronger and in better shape than ever, but what’s the best part for Bonnie?
“It’s the little things!” she says. “Just being able to walk to the mailbox instead of driving or go places with my granddaughter and not be hurting the whole time. I can take her to Carowinds or festivals downtown, and I’ll realize – oh my gosh, this doesn’t hurt! I used to drag a walker everywhere and was always hurting.”
Bonnie says that KCP has taught her how to better take care of her body and to become better aware of how it all works together. When something feels “out of sorts,” she makes an appointment to address it.
“Joyce and Joy are so good at what they do,” she says. “This has dramatically changed my life.”