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Welcome to Health and Fitness 101, a blog for people who enjoy the Montana lifestyle.
The aim of our blog is to interpret, distill, and then deliver to you the threads that bind physical medicine with applicable health and fitness ideas and principles.
It's all about helping to connect the dots that foster optimal human function and, ultimately, superior performance. Feel better. Perform better.

Missoula Area Events


Antara Quinones, doctor of physical therapy, of Alpine Physical Therapy earned her certification with the Lymphedema Association of North America as a certified lymphedema therapist in August 2015.

By completing the 135 hours of coursework and her national board exam, she is qualified to treat a host of patients with edema issues, including those affected by cancer treatment, venous system failure, or surgery. Contact Antara at Alpine’s North clinic at 541-2606.


Kick the Tires of Your Physical Therapist

Know that choosing a physical therapist is first and foremost your choice. So take some time to kick a few tires before simply “going to PT.”

All legally practicing physical therapists in Montana are licensed. That’s great. And there are a lot of quality PTs out there.

Some, however, have gone the extra mile to specialize in areas that may dramatically improve your situation.

At Alpine Physical Therapy, we have specialists in manual therapy, women’s health, spine care, jaw and face pain,vestibular and balance disorders, along with various sports experts in climbing, court sports, soccer, cycling, and running.

Of our 18 physical therapists at Alpine, 12 have doctorates, 4 are board certified through the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialities, and we hold 11 advanced and prestigious national certifications.

More people have kicked the tires of Alpine’s physical therapists and resoundingly say they are glad they did.

Click here to learn more about the advanced specialties of each of Alpine’s expert team members.


Alpine Physical Therapy’s “C-Leaguered” Summer Soccer Team Kicked Grass!

Fortunately, for Alpine PT’s ‘C-Leaguered’ soccer team, the season over. This year was not your typical 9 weeks of after-work-recreational fun with co-workers and friends. Alpine’s team had an inordinate amount of challenges: a multitude of injuries, a mid-season divorce between two team mates, a red card for fighting, and more losses than wins. As the captain, this made for an inordinate amount of weekly challenges getting 11 people on the field for 9 weeks in a row. Fortunately, we expanded the team to 27 players (15 of which were new to our typical field squad) to account for a chronic shortage of players throughout the summer vacation/divorce/work demands/pregnancies /sickness & injury-prone season.  We are also pleased to welcome a healthy baby to a lovely set of new parents/old friends on our team. Congratulations Brett and Katie Cuniff, on the new addition, Connor Patrick stepping into this world at 10 lbs 4 oz. 21″ long. 

Missoula summer soccer, you gotta’ love it!  Despite the experienced player shortages, we brought a lot of new adult players out for “true” C-league soccer that hadn’t kicked a ball since grade school and had a fantastic time meeting and recreating after work. 

We thank Alpine PT for sponsoring our stellar team again this summer. This is the 5th year Alpine PT put together a fine group of PT’s, PT aides, lawyers, grad students, fire fighters, dental hygienists, etc to come out for an after-work kick in the grass. We will look forward to a better summer next year with a few less challenges. 


Alpine Physical Therapy Extends its Reach to Dancers In Western Montana

Kristi Moore, MSPT just completed the course work portion of her Dance Medicine Rehabilitation certification in New York City with Westside Dance Physical Therapy.  She will complete the certification process by August 1, 2015.  She is excited to bring her specific knowledge about dancers back to Missoula’s dance community. 

These last 2 modules covered dancers throughout the life span (adolescents to the older dancer) and the foot/ankle/knee.  

Kristi is currently the only physical therapist in Montana to have completed this level of education specific to dancers.  She truly enjoys working with this unique population by working on injury prevention and rehabilitation from an injury to keep dancers doing what they love!


For more information on our Dance Medicine outreach at Alpin Physical Therapy, please visit our clinic webpage on this topic by clicking here.

Alpine is Again the Exclusive PT Sponsor of the 9th Annual Missoula Marathon

For the 9th consecutive year,  Alpine Physical Therapy will be the exclusive physical therapy sponsor of the Missoula Marathon.  This prestigious sponsorship puts us face-to-face with runners of all skill levels, giving us opportunities to provide consultation to all participants and to present numerous training seminars for area marathoners.

Our team of 17 physical therapists provides both pre- and post-race massages for all Missoula Marathoners. In addition, we offer free injury consultations both before and after the race.

We offer a unique service for all runners called The Runner’s Clinic, which is overseen by expert physical therapist, Matthew Schweitzer, DPT, CSCS. Matt is our sport biomechanics expert associated with high-mileage running.

Participants entering The Runner’s Clinic undergo 2-D video analysis of their stride, along with a comprehensive body and movement examination.  Integrating the 2-D video analysis with the clinical exam provides an exacting assessment for identifying running faults that can contribute to injury and impact performance.  The results of the examination form the basis of specific corrective exercises that you’ll begin learning and doing on day one!  For more information on The Runner’s Clinic, be sure to visit our website by clicking here.

Gaining knowledge about your injury and what you can do to resolve it puts you ahead of the pack. We invite you to peruse The Runner’s Clinic section of our website for information on various injuries common to runners.  Gather additional information by clicking on the Patient Resources section of our website for news and information on these and other conditions runners face.

We have three locations in Missoula.

  • Alpine Physical Therapy, North
    We are located at 2965 Stockyard Road in the North Reserve Business Center, just behind Carino’s.  406-541-2606.
  • Alpine Physical Therapy, South
    We are located in the Peak Health & Wellness Center South on the corner of Highway 93 South and Blue Mountain Road.  406-251-2323.
  • Alpine Physical Therapy, Downtown
    We are also located in the Peak Health & Wellness Center Downtown at 150 E. Spruce, Ste A.  406-549-0064.

All participants of the Missoula Marathon are provided free injury consultations with one of our physical therapists. Call to schedule a free injury consultation or to schedule for The Runner’s Clinic.

Alpine Reppin’ at the Peak Tri

On Saturday the 16th, Alpine Physical Therapy participated in the first annual Corporate Cup division of the Peak Triathlon, an event run by Missoula’s Fit to Fight non-profit. There were also numerous Alpine employees that took part in the single athlete men’s and women’s divisions!


The corporate team posted a third place win while fielding women in all three disciplines. Carley Mosher, an aide and ex-collegiate swimmer, completed the swim portion with a searing hot time. Fellow aide, Jessa Brooks, cruised on the bike and Jess Kehoe, the lone PT on the roster, crossed the finish line after the running the final 5k.

Jess had so much fun during her run that she ran right through the finish line and continued down the hill. Jess said she enjoys running hills and, “the course was super fun and for a great cause, we all went out at a fast pace and had a great time!” 

The other participants who rocked it were Brace Hayden (19th in men, 24th over all), Sam Schmidt (43th in women, 127th over all), Nikki Parnell (19th in women, 66th over all), Katie Schermele (40th in women, 122th over all). 

“The Peak Triathlon was a well-organized and positive racing experience!  There were spacious pool lanes, a beautiful, rolling bike course overlooking the Missoula Valley, a downhill run finish, and encouraging volunteers!  It was impossible not to have a blast!” – Nikki Parnell

Emily Jones, our wicked awesome athletic trainer, provided participants with injury consults and had a station with foam rolls and mats for athletes to stretch and prepare for the race. 

That wasn’t all, we had a great turn out of volunteers who donated their time instead of their energy!

Thanks to all who participated! All proceeds went to Fit to Fight to continue “empowering cancer survivors to improve their quality of life through a program of fitness and health.”

For more information, visit our webpage on Fight to Fight!


Thanks Fit to Fight for This Year’s Success of the Peak Triathlon

Special thanks for this blog post to Ron Veilleaux with MT ErgoFit. We honor the hard work Ron has put in to help Fit to Fight transition as the key ingredient to organization and implementation of this year’s Peak Triathlon.


This year Fit to Fight took over the running of the Peak Triathlon.  This would be the 6th year of the Triathlon and we were very pleased to be able to take this over as Fit to Fight’s main fundraiser of the year while maintaining the core partners of the event: The Peak Health and Wellness Center, and our Race Director, Kayla Johnson.  

This year we had over 230 competitors, and over 95 volunteers.  Additionally this year we had a new Corporate Cup division, with 9 teams competing for their business to bring home the Corporate Cup.  The team from First Security Bank edged out some close competition to win the 1st Corporate Cup. 

The Peak Triathlon always has some great stories.  This year we had two teams compete in the Triathlon that were alumni from our last Fit to Fight session.   It is truly inspiring to have our alumni competing in the event showing their strength after their battles with cancer.  As in years past there were plenty of first timers.  The first timers are the most fun to follow on the course as they always seem to have a bundle of nerves at the start to an overwhelming sense of accomplishment at the finish line. Finally, we had a new course record set this year by Dylan Gillespie, tearing through the course in 52:44.

The Peak Triathlon truly can offer something to any level of athlete.  The proceeds from the triathlon go directly to Fit to Fight and help us offer our three free sessions each year for folks that are battling or recently battled cancer.

Health Inspired Ergonomics for Your Office

Ron Veilleux, CEAS

406.370.7040 p

888.704.4765 fax


The Upshot of Physical Activity for Slowing Cognitive Decline in the Elderly

Alpine Physical Therapist, Brace Hayden, DPT , with the help of his esteemed co-worker, MS Graduate Candidate in Exercise Physiology, Laura Porisch, had the chance to present at the annual conference for the joint Montana Geriatric Society and the Governor’s Council on Aging last week in Helena. This was a  3-day conference entitled “Insights into Alzheimer’s Disease” with a variety of speakers and panel discussions on the looming topic of how do we prepare for the silver tsunami of aging baby boomers…losing their mind, or at least a large part of their memory and cognitive function.

Startling epidemiology reports published in a 2014 Neurolology journal estimate that the size of the older  population (over 65) will double over the next 25 years, growing to 70 million by 2030. The US could expect a 44 – 70% increase in the prevalence of Alzheimer’s Disease, with an estimated 7.7 million people affected in the next 10-15 years. The growing prevalence of Alzheimer’s Disease is estimated to soon affect every 1 in 8 Americans over 65 years old. Our fine state of Montana can expect an 81% increase in those affected by this neurological degeneration condition with numbers projected upwards of 29,000 in 2025.

Brace Hayden has a special interest in the Missoula community working with the often elderly population on balance, vestibular therapy (dizziness management) and the business of falls prevention. He jumped at the opportunity when asked to present at this statewide, multi-practitioner and lay public attended conference on the topic of “The Benefits of Physical Activity to Slow Cognitive Decline”, as fit/well-balanced seniors are near and dear to his PT heart. Preparing 110 slides over a 3 month period for a 90 minute presentation, on a topic he knew little about was his own dementia reduction physical exercise for the Spring.


The take-home message of the presentation was performing a routine cardiovascular exercise program 5 days per week for 20 – 60 minutes, has many “neuroprotective” health benefits. Increasing circulation and stimulation to your brain and body as you age not only can improve your chances of avoiding neurological illnesses like Alzheimer’s Disease, but it helps reduce many other health complications like obesity, diabetes, heart disease and strokes.  So if you want to improve your chances of living a longer, healthier life, get out for some daily exercise. Your long-term physical, immune-system and cognitive health will benefit greatly.

For more information, visit our Vestibular and Balance at Alpine webpage by clicking here.


RWM Members Get Their Pre Missoula Marathon Run on With Alpine Physical Therapy

Here’s an update from one of our running specialists at Alpine, Matt Schweitzer, DPT, OCS, CSCS.


A couple weeks back, a group of runners gathered at Alpine Physical Therapy’s North location (by Jonnny Carino’s) for a beautiful morning run. When the runners finished their training run, a group of five of Alpine’s physical therapists and one athletic trainer were stationed by to help the runners prepare for the upcoming Missoula Marathon.


The runners’ had their flexibility tested, core strength measured, and were tested using our new force plates. Runners learned new stretches, received exercises to increase core strength, and got to see if there was an imbalance with side to side stance on the force plates.


This was a super fun event, and everybody walked away with some things to work on with their training for the upcoming Missoula Marathon!

Painfree IS the New Normal

Nearly every day in my physical therapy practice, I hear patients tell me their pain “is from old age.” Until I tell them that I had a 20-year-old in just before them with the same complaints.

And then they say, “Well, I figured it would just get better by its self.”

Like the lady who had mid back pain for 20 years. A single maneuver in PT, and 20 years’ worth of pain . . . gone!

Too often, people experience pain, think it’s normal, and choose to live with it . . . for a long, long time. It’s not normal. Why?

Pain is telling you something. Listen to it.

After 23 years in practice, I am pleased to see so many new approaches and technologies available to people as never before. The result?

Painfree IS the new normal.

People are finding fast and effective solutions through physical therapy. They’re choosing to do something about it.

I encourage you to do the same. Call us at Alpine Physical Therapy.

  • South 251-2323
  • North 541-2606
  • Downtown 549-0064

Get your solution today.