Tara Schwartz Owner/Physical Therapist MPT
Hailing from Long Island, New York, Tara has been heavily involved in sports her entire life. As a college athlete, Tara spent countless hours in training and recovery. Her love of sports, training and recovery led her to her passion: physical therapy and helping people. It is with this passion that she decided to open Advance Physical Therapy & Wellness. Entering into the physical therapy field in 1996, Tara quickly realized the value and importance of hands-on therapy and providing personalized care for each person. She recognized the best way to have control over the kind of care her patients received was to open her own clinic. So, after many years of experience, and trying to maintain her passion and philosophy, she opened the doors of Advance Physical Therapy & Wellness in 2004, which has since become Fyzical Therapy & Balance Centers. While the changing healthcare field has presented many challenges to overcome, Tara believes that patient care and treatments should not suffer. She is a firm believer in empowering patients through education and proper training so they can prevent any future injuries, and enjoy a life of pain-free movement whenever possible. Tara hopes to ensure that each of her patients undergo a personalized therapeutic experience while helping them acquire the knowledge and skills to continue a healthier lifestyle and well-being. Tara graduated with an Advanced Master of Physical Therapy Degree from the Institute of Physical Therapy in St. Augustine in 1996. Prior to attending the Institute of Physical Therapy, St. Augustine, Tara attended Cortland State University where she completed a Bachelor of Science Degree in Education and Exercise Physiology. Tara is continuously looking to further her expertise through professional continuing education courses with a focus on orthopedics, sports injury and manual therapy; recently receiving training on Kinesiology Taping. Some of her continuing education includes spine training, as well as focus on treatment for the extremities and joints throughout the body. In addition, Tara is level II certified in Balance and Vestibular therapy. She is an active member of the American Physical Therapy Association and the Florida Physical Therapists in Private Practice Association which helps her stay current in the latest trends and studies. Tara thoroughly enjoys working with people of all ages and functional limitations. She has extensive experience in geriatric orthopedic rehabilitation and balance re-training, along with recreational, high school, collegiate and professional athletes for both rehab and performance. Tara enjoys connecting with people and provides health and wellness seminars and chats throughout the community.
Concentrations: Orthopedics, Sports Injury, Manual therapy, Balance and Vestibular therapy, Spine Injuries
Christy Whitehurst General Manager General Manager
My name is Christy and I am the General Manager at Fyzical & Balance Centers. I was raised in Richmond Virginia and went to college at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. I played basketball in college and earned a B.A in Psychology with a minor in Business Administration. I have several years of experience working within the intricacies of people and business management. In my role at Fyzical, I manage and lead our team as well as provide the highest quality of care in the Physical Therapy industry. I strongly believe in the power of positive thinking in the workplace and strive to bring that into Fyzical each and every day. I aim to regularly check in with my employees to ensure internal wellness and an overall everyday happiness. A saying that motivates me everyday is “Happy employees equal happy clients”. I love my job and the cheerful employees surrounding me everyday! Outside of work, I enjoy spending quality time with my loved ones, but also can be found at the poker table.
Kelsey Belmont Billing Manager Billing Manager
My name is Kelsey and I have been with Fyzical Therapy & Balance Centers for 10 years. I started off as a rehab technician and continued to grow with the company and eventually got into more of the insurance and billing side of things. I then decided to go to medical billing school at HCC which is what led me into the position I’m in now, Billing Manager. I have been doing the billing for Fyzical Therapy & Balance Centers for the last 4 years and continue to learn and grow with this ever-changing industry.
I am a Florida native who grew up in the Largo area but have lived in Tampa for the last 7 years. My husband and I are proud parents to two rescue dogs who we love to spend all our time with. When I’m not working, I love to workout, hang out in the sunshine, cook, and travel, especially to our countries National Parks!
Michelle Sherwood Physician Liaison Physician Liaison/Nutraceutical Consultant
My name is Michelle Sherwood and I am the Fyzician Liaison and the Nutraceutical and Weight loss Consultant at Fyzical Therapy and Balance Center. I have been working for Fyzical for 5 months and have loved every second of it. I grew up in St. Petersburg and graduated from Osceola High School. Immediately after graduating high school, I pursued a career in the beauty industry. I worked in Belleair doing nails for 29 years and made life long friendships with my clients that I truly cherish to this day. I’ve been married to my husband Doug for 29 years, and we have two awesome children Cody, 25 and Rylee, 23.
Soon after we had children is when I discovered my passion for wellness. It was important to me when raising my kids to encourage a healthy diet, vitamin intake and exercising regularly. Building my family’s immune system was extremely important to me and I believe it helped keep doctor visits to a minimum. Three years ago, I discovered Nutrametrix and found their passion and goals to be very similar to mine. I wanted to be involved in their mission in providing wellness to Health Professionals for recommendation to their patients. Their goal to reach people through their health professionals was something I was ready to be apart of. Soon after I started working with Nutrametrix is when I met Tara. She had a passion for encouraging a healthy lifestyle for her patients and that is when I started working with her on Nutrametrix.
About a year later, I started working for Tara and have never been happier. I do miss my clients but have enjoyed the journey life has taken me on. I truly love working for a company that shares the same passion as I do! While working at Fyzical, one of my goals i've set for myself is to spread awareness to people and Doctors about Fyzical, and how they lead the market in physical therapy and overall health. I tend to find myself working a lot, but do try to spend as much time as I can with family and friends. I love animals and would love to have a farm full of animals if I could! I hope to one day retire and spend my time traveling with family and friends! If you see me in the clinic, make sure you say hello!
Dr. Stephanie Vaughan Physical Therapist DPT
Stephanie Vaughan graduated from University of St Augustine with her Doctorate in Physical Therapy. She completed her undergrad at University of Florida. She is a Florida native born and raised in Clearwater where she met her husband and has a beautiful daughter with another child due April 2019 (should I just say I have two children?). Stephanie is certified in Manual Therapy and Vestibular Rehabilitation and is also trained in Pelvic Floor Dysfunctions. She loves working with a diverse population of patients and helping people achieve their individual functional goals.
Concentrations: Orthopedic, Vestibular, Pelvic Floor Dysfunctions, TMJ
Dr. Danica Michel Physical Therapist/Clinical Director DPT
Danica Michel is a Doctor of Physical Therapy with a certification in Manual Physical Therapy. She is a native of Michigan and graduated from Grand Valley State University with a Bachelors Degree in Athletic Training then later completed her Doctorate in Physical Therapy at Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan. Dr. Michel’s Doctoral research focused on low back pain among the law enforcement population. Danica is committed to the physical therapy profession and strives to implement the most effective treatments for each patient. She is also certified in Vestibular Rehabilitation and enjoys working with vertigo disorders. Doctor Michel lives in Clearwater Beach with her family where she enjoys playing golf, bicycling, paddle boarding and kayaking.
Concentrations: Orthopedic, Manual therapy, Vestibular, Sports Medicine
Dr. Mikaella Rainwater-Moore Physical Therapist DPT
Mikaella Rainwater-Moore is a physical therapist at Fyzical Therapy and Balance Centers. Mikaella graduated from University of South Florida in 2012 with a Bachelor's degree in Biomedical Science. Mikaella continued her education, earning her Doctorate Degree in Physical Therapy from University of North Florida in 2018.
Not only has Mikaella always had a passion for making a positive impact on the lives of others, but also for learning about the human body and human movement. Mikaella has a special interest in treating orthopedic injuries and using a personalized, evidence-based approach to facilitate healing.
Outside of the clinic, Mikaella enjoys spending time with friends and family, being outside (particularly at the beach), playing with her dog, Floppy, working out, and practicing yoga.
Romone Bowens, Physical Therapist Assistant PTA
Romone Bowens has been a physical therapist assistant at Fyzical Therapy and Balance Centers for the past 3 years. He graduated from University of South Florida in 2013 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology. Romone returned to school and has earned his Associates in Science degree as a physical therapist assistant from St. Petersburg College in 2015. He is a Florida native and was born and raised in St. Petersburg. He is often seen with large smile on his face as he truly enjoys his work environment and loves to spread joy and positivity amongst our patients and his fellow clinicians. He has a passion for treating orthopedic injuries and enjoys using his healing hands to aid in improving function, mobility and reducing pain for our patients here at Fyzical. Outside of Fyzical, Romone enjoys spending quality time with family & friends. He also enjoys being active by way of running and working out.
Concentrations: Orthopedics, Balance, TMJ
LouAnn Evinger, Physical Therapist Assistant PTA
I'm LouAnn Evinger. I'm a Physical Therapist Assistant working in the industry for 30+ years. I graduated with an Associate in Science degree from St. Petersburg (Jr.) College in 1985. I have been with Fyzical (aka Advance Physical Therapy and Wellness) for 14 years, giving me the privilege to watch us grow from a small 3 clinician clinic to the ever growing facility we are today. I have practiced in all areas of PT, but my passion has always been out patient orthopedics. I love being able to provide quality care to my clients and getting to know them and what their specific needs are and I feel OP care allows us to do that. I feel my areas of expertise are general orthopedics and TMJ but continue to grow with the expansion of our balance programs. As a native Floridian, I do enjoy being outdoors, as long as the summer heat doesn't beat me down. In my down time, I'm out back taking care of my furry and feathered friends and chilling with my fur baby Riley. I have a strong heart for animal rescue and hope to some day foster shelter pups.In the meantime, you can find me here at Fyzical ready to provide you with the best care possible to help you return to the things you love to do. Come be part of our Fyzical family!
Concentrations: TMJ, Orthopedic, Balance
Tina Tallman, Physical Therapist Assistant PTA
Tina Tallman graduated from St. Petersburg College in 1997 with an associates degree as a physical therapist assistant. Her resume includes extensive work in the nursing home/ geriatric rehab setting as well as acute rehab. She has been working in home health for the past 15 years with a specialty in geriatric functional rehab, pediatrics and adults with special needs therapy services.
Tina's passion is working with the special needs community. She created an adaptive fitness program called Me & U Fitness Academy two years ago located in Fyzical Therapy and Balance Center. Her program consists of adaptive group fitness classes that cater to each clients individual fitness and functional needs. She also provides individual PT services for special needs as well.
Tina became involved with the FL WCMX which is a combination of BMX and skateboarding in a wheelchair. WCMX is the fastest growing adaptive sport in the world at this time. Tina and the FL WCMX are working diligently to host the first WCMX event on the EastCoast in February 2019.
Tina is married with 3 children and has lived in Florida for 30 years. Her passion is the beach and all places tropical.
Concentrations: Pediatric and Adult Home Health Care, Pediatric and Adult Special Needs Therapist, Medical Fitness Trainer
Mary Cook Physical Therapy Assistant PTA
Mary Cook is a Physical Therapy Assistant at FYZICAL Therapy & Balance Center in Ellenton, Florida. She earned her Associates in Science degree at Pennsylvania State University. She graduated in 2017 and held the title of Secretary of the Physical Therapy Assistant Club. Mary decided to pursue her career in
Physical Therapy to follow her desire to help people recover from injuries.
Mary is excited to continue her education by specializing in balance to focus on Parkinson’s patients as well as other balance related deficiencies. While working as a PRN for Fyzical Therapy & Balance, she looks forward to each day and overcoming the variety of challenges with her patients by making therapy
fun. She brings a positive, fun approach to recovery.
Mary is a native Floridian who moved to Ohio for almost eight years after a beach wedding on Indian Rocks, Beach with her husband, Derek. She also has a stepson, Derek Junior. Mary is now settled in St. Petersburg where she lives on the shores of Gulf of Mexico. She enjoys kayaking, bicycling and the white
sandy beaches of St Pete Beach.
Ruth Wade GYROTONIC Trainer Certified GYRONTONIC Trainer/Specialized certificate in Osteoporosis
My name is Ruth and I view fitness and exercise as a gift, enhancing health and creating joy. That is why I decided to to build on my 9 years of Gyrotonic practice and pursue an instructor certification after 25+ years in the corporate training world.
I love helping people with their movement challenges, watching them get stronger and more agile. I have taken specialized training in the areas of osteoporosis and therapeutic breathing and customize each client’s experience to help them meet their goals; creating more space, strength and well-being in their bodies and minds. My extensive training has also helped me to deepen the experience in my own body, understanding and managing arthritis and the rehabilitation of two hip replacements. So I have first-hand knowledge of what it means to live with and overcome mobility challenges.
Originally from Chicago, I am an avid Cubs fan. I moved to Florida after raising my son and living in Ann Arbor, Michigan for over 20 years – Go Blue!
I offer free consultations and you can learn more about Gyrotonic at www.Gyrotonic.com
Maud Hoffman Licensed Massage Therapist LMT
I have been a licensed massage therapist since 2001 graduating with honors from the Humanities Center in St.Petersburg. I have always had an interest in anatomy, and how the human body moves and functions which was fueled by my years of competitive swimming. I’m passionate about continuing to learn and expand my knowledge to enhance the services I’m able to provide. I'm schooled in the following modalities:
Neuromuscular massage, deep tissue, sports massage, relaxation massage, massage cupping, lymphatic drainage for pre and post op procedures or injuries, oncology massage, post mastectomy scar tissue massage, palliative massage at end of life care or for the medically frail. In your massage session any of the modalities can be blended together depending on what you and your body is in need of that day.
In my time off from work I enjoy swimming, yoga, reading, knitting and spending quality time with my two children, Geo my cat, and Pilot my bird.
I’m very excited to support he Fyzical team by providing massage therapy. A regular massage is one of the best ways to keep one’s body, mind and spirit in good health.
Sarah Hoffman Customer Care Specialist/Billing
Hey all! My name is Sarah Hoffman and I’ve been fortunate to be a part of the Fyzical family for almost 3 years now. I am a CCS, I’ve cross trained to Tech, and now I’m helping in the billing department! I can’t begin to explain how much I have learned and grown since starting here. I am thankful every day for the family I have obtained and for the amazing patients I get to meet. I’m currently a full time student at SPC on top of work, my dog and my boyfriend along with our love for the outdoors keeps me VERY busy. Although I’m not sure what I’m going to school for quite yet, I KNOW that I want to help others. Fyzical has opened many doors for me and definitely keeps me on my toes. I look forward to meeting each and every one of you!!