BY SHALEEN DESTEFANO
Tucked inside the walls of a grey victorian home on South Pearl Street is a group of extraordinary women who make up the knowledgeable staff of BodyIntel. A premier studio addressing injury rehabilitation and prevention incorporating physical therapy and pilates. Their wealth of expertise provides you the opportunity to heal faster and to tone, strengthen, and lengthen your body without re-injuring. We had the opportunity to chat with Co-Owners, Tiffany Watson and Catherine Hodges to hear more about their practice.
BodyIntel recognized the missing link between rehabilitation needs and fitness. Many Coloradoans live active lifestyles and seek adventure throughout all stages of life. When injuries, arthritis, or spine issues come up, people need a way to heal the injury; or, in many cases, learn to manage the condition so they can continue to stay active. We provide manual therapy, exercise therapy, dry-needling, pelvic floor therapy, postural re-education and modalities to relieve pain and promote “normal” movement. We typically progress our clients to Pilates to continue to build strength, improve range of motion and gain core stability. We help people to avoid repetitive flare-ups by having a program that works for them based on their condition, goals, and lifestyle. This is largely successful as most of our clients continue to feel great and stay active and fit even after injury.
It’s no secret that we have a passion for supporting womxn-owned businesses. We’d love to learn more about your back story. How did you and Catherine start down this path together and what did you both do before opening BodyIntel?
Wow! We met 9 years ago when introduced by a doctor who referred to both of us. We each had a very similar Physical Therapy and Pilates practice within 2 miles of each other. Of course, we were both working so much we didn’t even know about the other’s business! This physician suggested the two of us meet as we both were in life transitions, and he had a hunch we would hit it off. Our first meeting felt serendipitous. We ended up talking for hours and strategizing about business. That was the day we decided to start a new adventure together. Within a week, we had formed a business plan and met with an accountant, attorney, and commercial real estate broker. As women, we had an intuition this would work. Against all odds and many opinions for/against this partnership, we jumped ship from our own businesses and started anew.
Great question! We have heard from several of our clients how much they appreciate that we spend the entire appointment with them. We are not juggling other patients in a big open room nor passing the patient off to assistants. We believe Physical Therapy is a health art that requires focused attention and constant reassessment. We have been in the business over 20 years and have fine-tuned our practice. We encourage all individuals to address their nagging injuries as these dysfunctions will continue to haunt you and cause compensation throughout the rest of your body. Right now, we are seeing a large increase in students having headaches, neck and back pain, and other postural imbalances due to sitting at computers for longer hours and sometimes being less active during COVID. Many of our clients come because of back pain or other recurring injuries that haven’t resolved with other interventions. People are usually ready to find a long-lasting solution versus relying only on medications or injections. Our clients vary from a grandmother who wants to be able to walk across the uneven terrain to watch her grandchildren play baseball to an endurance athlete who just completed her first 50 mile running race.
Restoring mobility, flexibility, and strength is the most effective and long-lasting way to relieve pain and age gracefully. But so many of us ignore this type of training. Can you tell us the long lasting benefits of a Pilates lifestyle?
Pilates is BodyIntel’s vehicle to body health at any age or stage in your life. We love that Pilates can be both anaerobic and aerobic. Pilates requires a mind-body connection because you move your body through precise exercises with mind control over which muscles to use. It also promotes strengthening in a lengthened muscular position. Hence promoting shapely, not bulky musculature. It is low impact so will not add compression to tight joints. Through the 600+ designated Pilates exercises, a common theme is using the core muscles, like your abdominals, trunk muscles and pelvic floor to align your body and coordinate movement. Pilates focuses on improving and maintaining ideal range of motion and attaining your body’s correct postural alignment. We often negate postural muscles in fitness and work life.
The pandemic was a challenging time for many businesses. BodyIntel rose to the challenge of this pandemic the best we could. We offered private and group sessions on Zoom, which is still helpful to people who travel or want to exercise from home. The staff staggered our schedules, which meant some people worked earlier, later, or on weekends to make sure we minimized the number of people in the building while still taking care of our clients. Our private treatment rooms helped to decrease the risk of exposure to our staff and clients. We are thankful that our clientele values health and that many of them continued to come for the mental and physical benefits. We received a lot of positive feedback that BodyIntel’s positive energy and consistency were a big part of helping people get through the pandemic stress.
When you’re not running a successful studio, how do you spend your time?
Catherine is in a crazy period of life. She has three kids that are active in sports and social activities. She also loves to be active! Catherine is typically found outdoors at a sporting event, running, biking, skiing, hiking, playing golf or tennis. She loves the mountains and respite with her family.
I love spending time with my husband and our new puppy, Augie. You can find us going for a run around Wash Park and walking to Devil’s Food for a coffee and a cream puff! We enjoy having friends over for casual dinner parties, going to concerts, and traveling.
We want to continue to grow. We are looking at increasing our real estate so we can offer more classes, services, and retail. While the physical therapy industry is trending toward high volume patient care to make up for decreases in insurance reimbursements, we are committing to what makes us special and unique… high quality, one-on-one PT to patient care. We are truly focused on individual’s health and longevity in the health realm.
To learn more about this incredible team, visit them at 1574 S. Pearl St, or at bodyintelco.com.