Take the Genetic Height Predictor Test!

Here are 3 quick methods you can do to find out if your height measured up to what it ‘should’ be or determine how tall your child will be.

Methods for Predicting Your Child’s Height

  1. Genetic Potential Height: Add the height of your mother and father together in inches and find the average height. Then add 2.5 inches to determine a boy’s height and subtract 2.5 inches to determine a girl’s
  2. Two Times Two: Figure out how tall your child is or was when she/he was two years old, then multiply that height by two.
  3. Follow the curve: Measure your child’s current height, then plot it on the growth curve chart used by pediatricians. Follow along on their growth curve—staying in the same percentile and see where they end up as an adult.”-

None of these methods are absolute, as other growth factors influence how tall you will be, such as posture issues and scoliosis.

Some say that the ratio of your height is 1:1 to your arm length or wingspan.

Wingspan is your arm length measured from the middle finger of your right hand to the middle finger of your left hand when outstretched.

Measuring wingspan is just one of the many measurement tools that I take when you are a patient here, specifically for posture related issues, such as scoliosis, Schueremann’s, kyphosis or hyperlordosis.

There is also research linking arm length or wingspan to excelling in athletic sports, specifically those that involve balls, wrestling and the mixed martial arts.

Makes sense when you think about it since the longer your arm is, then you can reach your opponent or the ball before those with shorter limbs!

Study shows wingspan has a correlation to athletic prowess in the NBA, MMA



Come in for a posture assessment and see how wingspan reflects your height!

Book your appointment

“No one can really predict to what heights you might soar. Even you will not know until you spread your wings.” – Gil Atkinson

Does it matter what type of brace to wear when you need one for scoliosis? 

The answer: YES!

If you or your child has been told to wear a full-time, solid brace due to scoliosis, then it is wise to do your homework and read up on what types of braces are out there for you.

*I do not sell, make or distribute any braces, and I do not get any payment or bonuses for promoting one type over another.*

The ideal scoliosis brace should allow your body to ‘breathe’ by having openings cut out in the brace where your ribs need to expand. Scoliosis is a 3-dimesional curvature so simply tightening a brace with straps is not the answer, as that will only SQUEEZE you in 2-dimensionally and not fully correct the curvature.

Schroth therapy can complement any scoliosis brace but not every brace can complement Schroth therapy.

Braces have evolved over the years and here is a snapshot of their history:

1) Milwaukee Brace: original scoliosis brace invented in 1946

Cervico-Thoraco-Lumbo-Sacral Orthosis (CTLSO)

  • Pros: good for high scoliosis curves in cervical and thoracic spine
  • Cons: metal, not 3-dimesional and old-fashioned


2) Providence or Charleston Nighttime Brace: developed in the 1990’s


3) Boston Brace: Thoraco-Lumbo-Sacral-Orthosis (TLSO); developed in 1972

  • Pros: Most common choice by doctors due to familiarity and gets good results. Extensive research
  • Cons: Heavy. Straps fasten in the back making it hard to take on and off by yourself. It doesn’t correct the curve in a 3 dimensional pattern and often semi- custom or pre-fabricated. Even when these braces are individually designed, they are little more than modified “barrel” braces. Can give too much abdominal pressure. Made by traditional casting .

4) WCR Brace (Wood-Cheneau-Rigo) : modern brace developed by Dr. Rigo, Grant Wood and Chêneau to de-rotate the spine and used in conjunction with the BSPTS/Schroth Method

  • Pros: Custom made and computer-generated to fit  exactly to your curve type. Thin and allows for expansion in the rib cage where needed and lightweight ; comes in lots of patterns. It is an international brace as it is made in the US AND in Spain.
  • Cons: Big and long  as the brace comes up and under the armpit . Can be costly.


Still not convinced? Check out these x-ray results:


(Photo from Align Clinic website)

Here is their website if you would like more information, case studies, results or questions answered. The Align Clinic. They are located in Green Bay, WI, San Mateo, CA, Houston, TX and I host a clinic as needed here in Tallahassee.

Regardless of which brace you choose, none of them will work if you don’t wear them! So please wear your brace 18-20 hours a day as recommended to get the best results. It’s very similar to wearing orthodontic braces in your mouth or a retainer: if you don’t wear it – it won’t work!

See you at the next bracing clinic!

Our next Scoliosis Bracing clinic will be

January 2020

WCR Evaluation and Fitting clinic

Suite 114, 1809 Miccosukee Commons Dr, Tallahassee, FL 32308, USA

Presented by Walter Ramos, LO of Align Clinic

Hosted by Joy Smith, Schroth PT at Joy of Therapy Physical Therapy Clinic

Phone: 920-940-5277

This special Cheneau Rigo Brace evaluation is a complimentary opportunity for all patients and families who may have questions or concerns regarding the fit, function, or design of their brace. This clinic is also open to BSPTS, Schroth PTs, MDs, and any new patients that may want to learn more about the Cheneau Rigo brace.

To schedule your complimentary evaluation, please call Lynn at 920-940-5277.

We urge you to take advantage of this unique opportunity and we look forward to seeing you soon! Appointments are limited and filling up fast; therefore it will be booked as “first come, first served.”

The clock is ticking… Time to use your FSA before 2019 ends!

money pink coins pig
Photo by Skitterphoto on

Do you have an FSA , or Flexible Spending Account through your employer?

Can you believe that there are less than 7 weeks left in 2019?

If you have money left in your FSA, then be sure to use it before you lose it!

 It applies to physical therapy services and is accepted at the Joy of Therapy for all therapy services.

So if you have been putting off getting in for an appointment, or hoping (like most of us do) that the pain will go away, but it hasn’t- then come in soon!

For State of Florida employees, it is called a ‘Benny’ Card and works just like a credit card on medical expenses. December 31 is the last day to incur claims for 2019. 

Below is an excerpt from that will help to answer some of your questions. All FSA plans are different, so check what your limits of spending are for this plan year.

“A Flexible Spending Account (also known as a flexible spending arrangement) is a special account you put money into that you use to pay for certain out-of-pocket health care costs.

You don’t pay taxes on this money. This means you’ll save an amount equal to the taxes you would have paid on the money you set aside.

Employers may make contributions to your FSA, but aren’t required to.

Learn about Flexible Spending Accounts

You use your FSA by submitting a claim to the FSA (through your employer) with proof of the medical expense and a statement that it has not been covered by your plan. You will then receive reimbursement for your costs. Ask your employer about how to use your specific FSA.

Read more about how FSAs work in this IRS publication (PDF).

A few fast facts about FSAs

  • FSAs are limited to $2,650 per year per employer. If you’re married, your spouse can put up to $2,650 in an FSA with their employer too.
  • You can use funds in your FSA to pay for certain medical and dental expenses for you, your spouse if you’re married, and your dependents.
    • You can spend FSA funds to pay deductibles and copayments, but not for insurance premiums.
    • You can spend FSA funds on prescription medications, as well as over-the-counter medicines with a doctor’s prescription. Reimbursements for insulin are allowed without a prescription.
    • FSAs may also be used to cover costs of medical equipment like crutches, supplies like bandages, and diagnostic devices like blood sugar test kits.
    • See a list of generally permitted medical and dental expenses.

FSA limits, grace periods, and carry-overs

You generally must use the money in an FSA within the plan year. But your employer may offer one of 2 options:

  • It can provide a “grace period” of up to 2 ½ extra months to use the money in your FSA.
  • It can allow you to carry over up to $500 per year to use in the following year.

Your employer can offer either one of these options but not both. It’s not required to offer either one.

At the end of the year or grace period, you lose any money left over in your FSA. So it’s important to plan carefully and not put more money in your FSA than you think you’ll spend within a year on things like copayments, coinsurance, drugs, and other allowed health care costs.”

“You can include in medical expenses amounts you pay for therapy received as medical treatment”-

Call, email or send a message on one of our social media sites to schedule your appointment before your FSA benefits expire on December 31- see you soon!

Contact us today!

How much exercise do I and/or my child really need?

The ‘Move Your Way’ Campaign was created to help you know how much exercise you and your chid need to thrive. It is in response to the National Youth Sports Strategy which aims to unite U.S. youth sports culture around a shared vision:

“One day, all young people will have the opportunity, motivation, and access to play sports — regardless of their race, ethnicity, sex, ability, or ZIP code.”- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Click on this fun link below to plan you and your child’s activities/exercise for this upcoming week !

Move Your Way link: Want to get more physical activity? Build a weekly plan
Muévete a tu manera URL: ¿Quieres hacer más actividad física? Planifica la semana




A Scoliosis Exercise & Bracing Success Story


“Here’s proof why managing a scoliosis curve during a child’s growth spurt is so important” 

It’s overdue to share with you a scoliosis success story that I would love to take all of the credit for, but this one really goes to my patient and her family.

This sweet 12year old girl came to the Joy of Therapy in April 2019 with some back pain, an ever increasing scoliosis curve,  and discomfort wearing a back brace. Plus, little did we both know, but she was about to hit a growth spurt over the summer. 

Fast forward 5 months, and nearly 20 treatments later, she has decreased her scoliotic curve by 50%!

She went from wearing a rigid brace and no therapy with a 48 degree curve in the thoracic spine and 43 degree curve in the lumbar spine, to a 22 degree curve in the thoracic spine and 20 degree curve in the lumbar spine while wearing a dynamic brace and therapy.

Plus she grew 2 inches during that same time! 

How did she do it?

Through the combined effort of:

  1. Specific Scoliosis Exercises custom designed for her curve type by Joy Smith,PT 
  2. An amazing dynamic WCR brace from the Align Clinic which she wears consistently 20+ hours a day designed by Walter Ramos,L/O,CPO Align clinic
  3. Supportive and loving family
  4. Great medical care by Dr. Ryan Price at Tallahassee Orthopedic Clinic TOC

The key to all of this success hinges on the fact that she wanted to make this change and stuck with the program.

She attends therapy regularly, wears her brace as prescribed and her dad has even made the Schroth bars for her to use at home.

So what does this mean for you if you have scoliosis? No matter how big or small your curve is, if you are a child, teenager or adult or whether or not you have a brace or don’t want to wear a brace- a comprehensive program that addresses ALL of your needs is here for you.

Contact me today to find out how to start feeling stronger, straighter and feel better all over today! #scoliosis #schrothmethod #physicaltherapy #cureais #posture #curvygirls

Call or email here

Is this poor posture or something more?



This is Scheuermann’s  Hyperkyphosis

It is a “structural kyphosis that typically develops during adolescence, causing the kyphotic spine to become rigid, and sometimes progresses into adulthood.” — Scoliosis Research Society.

It is not poor posture or a lazy posture. This is a  condition that includes physiological changes to the structure of the thoracic spine, therefore causing an increased rounding of the trunk.

The Schroth Method can help those diagnosed with Scheuermann’s by elongating and de-rotating the spine. Schroth exercises are customized for your unique spinal deformation. The method teaches you how to:

  • Correct spinal rotation and increase lung capacity with a rotational breathing technique.
  • Help restore normal spinal position with pelvic corrections, breathing technique, and stabilizing isometric contractions.
  • Improve your posture during routine daily living, not just during therapy.

Scheuermann’s disease begins before puberty. It is not known what triggers the abnormal growth, but there are theories that the bone may have been injured at some point, or that the area was weak before puberty. Heredity is thought to play a role, but the connection is not straightforward.

The condition is connected to skeletal growth, and the curvature does not usually increase after growth is completed. It is estimated that 1 to 8 percent of people develop the condition.

If you or anyone you know has this condition, please go to your doctor and ask for a referral to physical therapy. Then call and schedule your appointment today with Joy Smith,PT the  ONLY physical therapy specialist in the Florida Panhandle to treat Schuermann’s disease according to the Schroth Method.

#posture #physicaltherapy #schrothmethod # back pain

Schedule your evaluation today

Do adolescents really grow more in the summer?


6 Signs Your Kid Is Having A Growth Spurt


Could it be the warm summer months, lots of sunshine, less stress and more sleep that causes seemingly ‘more growth’ in the summer for adolescents? Perhaps. But whatever the reason may be, your pre-teen or teen is making big gains in his/her body.

And summer is a great time for annual doctor check-ups and sports physicals. Plus keep an eye on their spines when they don a swimsuit. Do you notice a hump in their ribs when they bend over or does one of their shoulder blades look like it is ‘winging out’? If so, definitely follow up with your pediatrician for a scoliosis screening. It is always best to catch the curve while it is small so that the best care can be given. But whatever you do , don’t ‘wait and see’ if the curve in their spine will straighten out on its own. There are several conservative treatment options available to your adolescent to monitor, halt and/or reverse the scoliotic curve: no matter how small or big!

Inquire below for more information about conservative scoliosis treatment options :

Contact us today!

Want to know a way to decrease inflammation naturally and holistically WITHOUT the use of medications?


fruit cherries
Photo by Lisa Fotios on

Cherries! Or more specifically, Tart Cherry Juice .

All it takes is simply 2 tablespoons of tart cherry juice FROM concentrate, preferably before bedtime ( I’ll explain the ‘why’ for that in another post) and you will see and feel the difference this delicious fruit can make in your body.

The following are excerpts from the insightful book, ‘Taming Pain: Lessons from the Trenches” by Cheryl Wardlaw.Get the book here

“Research shows that cherries reduce inflammatory chemicals by as much as 25% (after only 28 days of eating them)  without having a negative effect on blood sugar or insulin levels.  Even better, these gains are sustained for over a month after you stop eating cherries (although why would you stop eating cherries?!) Cherries are packed with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory substances, including anthocyanin, quercetin and melatonin, and assist the body in producing glutathione (the main anti-inflammatory for the brain.)”

Anyone who has gout will most likely tell you that they already know the benefits of drinking tart cherry juice as it helps to decrease gout symptoms. That is because the anthocyanin in cherries reduces blood urate levels by 15% in as little as 3 days. Turns out that “cherries have the HIGHEST levels of anthocyanin of any food (blueberries don’t have any) and specifically block COX I and II (inflammatory chemicals., just like arthritis medication. Anthocyanins are more effective than vitamin C or E and AS EFFECTIVE as Naproxen, Ibuprofen or Aspirin WITH NO BAD EFFECT ON YOUR STOMACH! Note: for kidney health you should not take over 5000 NSAIDs and 1000 acetaminophen tablets in your lifetime!”

To sum it up here’s what anthocyanin does for you:

“Lowers urate (uric acid) levels in the blood stream to control gout

Acts an anti-inflammatory on par with NSAIDs

Suppresses production of pro-inflammatory cytokines

Suppresses growth factors 

Protects cell membranes”

In my next blog, I will talk about more AMAZING things that cherries can do for your health.

Cherry season is nearly here, so plan on indulging in them!

And in the meantime, go buy some Tart Cherry Juice FROM CONCENTRATE, pour 2 tablespoons into a cup and cheers!

(Caution: cherry juice is a natural blood thinner. If you take prescription blood thinners, then please talk to your doctor about your medications if they need to be adjusted)

Breaking news! An update on Melissa’s story: ” I won’t wait and see anymore”

IMG_0406In February, I posted a story about my sister, and her journey with scoliosis. (If you haven’t had a chance to read it, then click here to catch up before you read about her progress)  Melissa’s story

Melissa went to her annual check-up this past month and got some encouraging news! Last April, prior to beginning her Schroth therapy in the Fall, She went to her annual physical exam and was saddened to learn that she had ‘shrunk’ nearly 2 inches! She had been 5’8″ since she hit maturity as an adolescent, and when she learned she had lost nearly 2 inches in height:  it was not good news (especially since that meant she would now be the same height as her older and shorter sister!)

But all kidding aside, she knew that this change in height really meat that her scoliosis may be getting worse.

Fast forward 6 months and she began the Schroth physical therapy at the Paley Institute in West Palm Beach, FL alongside with her youngest daughter, who also has scoliosis.

They both went to many treatment sessions and enjoyed it so much that they had Schroth wall bars built and installed in their home for them to use on a daily basis. They also have the placement pads and do the exercises as recommended by their physical therapist.

This past month Melissa went again to her annual physical exam and her doctor measured her height. Guess what? She is now back to her usual 5’8″! She was so excited that she immediately called to tell me her good news. She attributes the positive change to doing the prescribed specific scoliosis exercises (PSSE) and learning her curve.

And as if that wasn’t enough good news: there’s more! Her daughter, went in for a DIERS scan and it found that her curve decreased 7 degrees! The DIERS Formetric 4D is a light-optical scanning method which projects a line grid on the back of the patient which is recorded by an imaging unit.

So what’s the ‘take away’ message here? Schroth Therapy works for improving posture and decreasing scoliotic curves! But it only works if you put the effort into it. Both Melissa and her daughter are motivated for change !

If this story speaks to you or someone that you know who may need to hear this, then please contact me to find out how I can help improve your scoliotic posture.

“Nothing motivates you like movement. If you need motivation, get moving.”  

-Christy Wright

Contact me today!


I bet you’d never guess that the nagging pain in your hip could be coming from somewhere else…

Do you have hip pain or pain in your thigh that just won’t go away? (Now if you do have hip degeneration and have been told you need a hip replacement, then you probably have more going on than this article pertains to)

Ever thought that there may not be anything wrong at all with your hip? It may in fact be  ‘referred pain.’

What is referred pain? It is pain in an area of your body that can often be some distance away from the actual stressed tissue.

One good example is sometimes hip pain can be diagnosed as hip bursitis: inflammation of the bursa (fluid-filled sac near a joint) at the part of the hip called the greater trochanter. When this bursa becomes irritated or inflamed, it causes pain in the hip. Yes, hip pain truly can be coming from your hip, but when you have tried to get rid of it with traditional therapies or injections and it still is there,  then the source may be coming from somewhere else…and it may be nerve root referred pain. 

Check out this map of the dermatomes of the body that depicts where nerve roots refer to: 


The following excerpt is from ‘Taming Pain: Lessons from the Trenches.”- Second Edition 2013 by Cheryl F. Wardlaw, PT MMSc, CFMT :

“A nerve root is the part of the nerve that comes off of the spinal cord and goes out the hole between two vertebrae.

Each nerve root has some fibers mixed in from the nerve root above and below, so it’s not EXACT. Each nerve root, when stressed, can cause pain in a predictable path. It will cause weakness in predictable muscles. Let’s take the L4 nerve root for example. Let’s say you have pain on the side of your hip and in the front of your thigh. The muscles that pick up your big toe (L4) and straighten your knee (L3& L4) are weak. I would sure need to look at what could be irritating the L4 nerve root!

Could it just be hip bursitis? Doubtful. Hip bursitis doesn’t make your big toe weak. Could it be 5 things: hip bursitis, a pulled muscle in your thigh, some knee arthritis, a bunion on your big toe and low magnesium? Well, it could be, but I would still have to rule out the L4.

Things that stress a nerve root:

If we decide that a nerve root is squawking, and we know which nerve root, the question still remains, what is irritating the nerve root? So here goes:

The Facet joint: the joints in your spine are called facet joints

The Nerve Root: comes out of the hole in front of the facet joints. Changes at the facet joint can decrease the size of the space and put pressure on the nerve. Inflammation will be the result.

The Disc: The spacer between the vertebrae is the disc. If the disc shrinks down (degeneration) the bones will get closer together. The size of the opening will decrease and the nerve will be compressed and will inflame. If the disc bulges back, the same thing happens.

The Spinal Canal: The space that the spinal cord runs through is called the canal. Across time, bone can build up inside the canal and make less room for the nerve root. This condition is known as spinal stenosis. The nerve will be compressed and will inflame.

Now that we know where it is, ( Let’s stick with L4 as our suspect), what might be causing it ( let’s choose a locked facet) and that the nerve root is inflamed, our job is as simple as a game of CLUE : Colonel Mustard, in the library, with the candlestick! Referred pain patterns help me figure out where I should be working!

If your therapist or doctor are only treating your symptoms, and not searching very actively for where the pain is coming from, then you will be hurting a very long time.”

-See how maybe your hip pain isn’t really coming from the hip itself, but rather may be coming from your back? Contact me today to see how I can help solve your pain puzzle and get rid of the nerve culprit! 


5 Things You Can Do to Avoid ‘Weekend Warrior’ Injuries

garden grass meadow green
Photo by Skitterphoto on

Between work, family commitments, and running errands, it’s understandable why weekend warriors cram all their physical activity on Saturday and Sunday. And bonus if the weather is beautiful ( as it was here in Tallahassee this weekend).


Unfortunately, this pattern of 5 days of inactivity, and being active on the weekend often leads to injury.

The most common types of injuries seen in weekend warriors are:

Muscle strains such as hamstring strains

Ligament sprains, most commonly in the ankle

Tendonitis, especially in the Achilles

Low back pain

Shoulder pain

active athlete ball basketball
Photo by Pixabay on

To decrease your chances of injury, there are some things you can do. The biggest step you can take is to avoid going from no activity to full out competition. Try to maintain a basic level of fitness through general aerobic activity, strengthening, and stretching throughout the week. If you know what type of sport you’ll be participating in, adding in some sport-specific conditioning is a good idea. 

In addition to maintaining a basic level of fitness, here are a few other tips specifically for the weekend warrior:



1)Build your activity level slowly 

If you’ve taken a layoff over the winter, build up slowly to your first 5k, or the spring softball season

2)Give yourself time for a proper warm up 

A dynamic warm up is best, including some jogging or other aerobic activity to get your heart rate up, along with some high knees, braiding, butt kicks, or toy soldiers will get your body ready for activity

3) Stretch when you’re done 

Research has shown that static stretching before activity probably doesn’t have much benefit, but stretching after has been shown to reduce soreness and help recovery

4) Make sure your technique and equipment are up to par 

Poor equipment can put you at higher risk for injury. If your technique is off, especially in sports like golf or tennis, you can be at higher risk for injury. A visit with your physical therapist or coach can help correct issues. 

5) Don’t push through pain 

Some soreness after an increase in activity is normal, but if it doesn’t go away, gets worse, or is severe, get it checked out. 

woman in grey shirt holding brown cardboard box
Photo by bruce mars on

If you’re having pain, suffered an injury, want help designing a training program to get you ready to compete, or just want a physical to make sure you’re ready for activity, a visit with a physical therapist is a good idea.



So go ahead and give me a call today to get back to feeling healthy and pain free and then you can live your life to the fullest!



Smashing successful open house! ‘High Hopes’ realized


I love Panic!At the Disco’s song, ‘High Hopes’, as I have dubbed it my ‘theme song’ these past several months while I plugged along creating my physical therapy clinic:

“I had to have high high hopes for a living. Didn’t know how but I always had a feeling.”  (Check out their video if you want to get that song in your head )  Panic! At the Disco- High Hopes

Many years of building a community of clients and contemplating just how to do this thing called a business, finally culminated into a fabulous celebration last night. The  open house to my brand new PT clinic, Joy of Therapy, was a smashing success!

 I truly enjoyed every minute of it and am so very grateful for the many clients, friends and family that took time out of their day to come and support my “dream come true!” (We were all having such a good time, that we forgot to take pics of everyone that came to the open house. Oops! But check out the good ones below.)

The food was DELICIOUS (thank you to Brandy L.,  Sarah H. , Tasty Pastry, Publix and Josey V. ) , the decor GORGEOUS ( thank you to the talented, Karyn Tarmey), set- up and serve went SMOOTHLY (thank you to my mom and dad, Brandy and Kylie L.) and hey, I looked pretty good too! (thanks to my stylists, Jillian Visconti (hair stylist) and Marianne Brooks with Cabi). It takes a village to pull this off, and my heart is filled with gratitude for all of you.

The clinic is truly reflective of ‘me’ and how I believe that physical therapy should and needs to be delivered: efficient, thoughtful, caring, valuable to you, your time and your money and most of all, joyful.

So if you haven’t already come in for your evaluation, then what are you waiting for ?! I am here and ready to serve your PT needs whenever they may arise for you. Here I come Tallahassee!