Sports Massage Therapist Profile – Tommy

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Sports Massage Therapist Profile – Tommy

Tommy isn’t a new face at all, in fact he’s been a part of the Body Mechanics team for over 4 years! He’s treated hundreds of clients, many of whom trust him to maintain their health on a regular basis, but we still wanted to dig in and find some tidbits about Tommy that no one would know. Here’s what we learned!

What’s your history with sports? Do you compete? Train? Maybe just watch?

Tommy – From the ages of 4 – 10, I practiced Martial Arts. As I got older I gave up on Martial Arts to focus on playing football, baseball & lacrosse during high school. After high school, I became fascinated with bodybuilding. I had abs for the first time in my life! But…I still couldn’t lift my own body weight in a pull-up.

My goal became to be able to do 10 perfect pull-ups which lead me down the rabbit hole of bodyweight training. Before the pandemic I had just started practicing Jiu Jitsu and really enjoyed it. I would love to go back when I feel it is safe to do so.

Can you share one experience, as someone who knows their body and is active, that has greatly impacted your massage

Tommy Over the past few years I have overused my body so much. I have developed and sometimes gotten rid of many of the same symptoms my clients complain of. I’m currently dealing with a chronic pain in my shoulder. It isn’t so bad that it affects my work but I have to be mindful of not letting it rest.

What is your best uh oh story? A time you really messed something up with your body.

TommyWhen I first started Jiu Jitsu I had a sparring session where I was put into a choke hold and restraint. I was trying to escape a move and twisted my torso really hard, which my opponent squeezed his legs and arms around me even harder. I bruised my rib and had to work through that pain for a month!

If you could try any sport/or amazing physical activity what would it be?

TommyGymnastics, Olympic Lifting, & MMA

How did you get into sports massage? 

TommyI was going to school for acupuncture. My teacher at the time was an acupuncturist and a massage therapist. She suggested I get licensed in massage therapy first. I fell in love with massage therapy and completely lost my interest in becoming an Acupuncturist.

Are there any athletes you would love to work on? 

Tommy – I enjoy working on all athletes. None specifically!

What sets your sports massage apart from anyone else?

Tommy – My ability to understand my clients experience as my own. Since I have had and still get some of the issues my clients come in with I tailor my techniques using educated, experienced empathy.

What are your favorite kinds of people to treat and why?

Tommy – Anyone who needs my help! I like to teach people to help themselves after I treat them. People think they have to do big expensive things to feel better but there is a lot of knowledge out there that can teach people to help themselves. I guide everyone I can to that info.

Who is your favorite person who works in pain science? (doctor, personality on youtube or insta, website?) 

Tommy – One of our own therapists at Body Mechanics, Matt Danzinger. Sometimes the big people in the field are less reachable and sometimes even unpractical. Matt and I work in the exact same environment. Our interpretations of an issue come from a similar starting point, as opposed to where maybe a physical therapist or chiropractor would need to approach something. Even if we disagree on something we are speaking the same language. Our conversations and analysis have facilitated my growth at a much faster rate then my other work environments.

Are there any oddball facts we do not know about you that we should? 

Tommy – When I was younger, I used to believe Coffee was a scam! Hahaha! How could that smelly brown liquid make you stay awake?

Body Mechanics Orthopedic Massage

1 W 34th St
#204,
New York, NY 10001
Phone: 212-600-4808
Email: info@bodymechanicsnyc.com

Medical Massage Therapist Profile – Erika

We welcome Medical Massage Therapist Erika to the Body Mechanics team! She gave us some insights into her life, passions and hobbies. Take a read to get to know her a little better!

What is your clinical/career background and what drew you to medical massage?

Before becoming an LMT I worked with physical therapists and chiropractors. The work I assisted them with was mostly trigger point and myofascial release. 

What drew me to medical massage was being able to see a client progress and become healthier and stronger as I work with them. I love setting a goal with someone, focusing and forming a plan of attack with them, seeing them work harder and finally achieving that goal.

LMT Medical Massage Therpist at Body Mechanics Orthopedic Massage
Medical Massage Therapist Erika Rossell

How long have you been practicing medical massage?

2 years. This is a new career path for me but I take it very seriously. All of my jobs as an adult have been a way for me to make someone’s life better, but  before now I did as an entertainer. I brought joy and brightness to them. Now I can help people by healing them with my own hands.

Can you share one experience that has greatly impacted your massage?

I treated a first time client who had been finding no comfort for her low back pain. She was mentally groggy from the heavy amount of  prescribed pain medication she needed to function, tried physical therapy, acupuncture, and reiki. None had brought her relief. She started to book after one session on a bi weekly basis and told me that massages with me were the only treatment that brought her any relief. I was so grateful to be able to help her.

What is your best “Uh-oh!” story? A time you really messed something up with your body, that helped inform your medical massage technique.

My Uh-oh story isn’t actually about my own mistake! One time I went to get a massage and the person I saw performed traction on my finger a little too hard and it was hurting for 2 weeks after! That experience reminded me that you really have to be proactive and check in with a client. It also made me understand how important it  is to grasp and respect the limits of the body

What are your favorite kinds of people to work on and why?

People that have a genuine interest in learning about their body and healing it through their own effort. I love people who are as eager to learn about their body as I was when I started to go to school for medical massage. People who are engaged and want to learn how they can help themselves and want to know why I chose the style of work I did. I love the conversation when people are interested in learning more and getting stronger.

If you could try any sport or attend a special event what would it be?

 Don’t know so much about history but I would love to work on some top ranking champion surfers!

Body Mechanics Orthopedic Massage Erika Rossell
Erika breathing fire

Are there any oddball facts we do not know about you that you’d like to share?

Plenty! I’m a retired dancer. I’m also a retired circus performer. I know how to eat and breathe fire. I know how to swallow a sharp sword. I surfed when I was a kid growing up in Florida. Bonus fact: my mother is a Florida LMT going on 36 years. 🙂

What sets your medical massage apart from anyone else?

I become invested in how that client feels. I care deeply about their pain. I’m a newer massage therapist but I’m highly experienced in pain and recovery being an injury sufferer and a retired dancer. I understand how restricting and inhibiting injury can be to somebody’s everyday life and I work my hardest to find the problem and get them past it.

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Body Mechanics Orthopedic Massage

1 W 34th St
#204,
New York, NY 10001
Phone: 212-600-4808
Email: info@bodymechanicsnyc.com

Sports Massage Therapist Profile – Emanuel

Body Mechanics welcomes new Sports Massage Therapist Emanuel to the team! With experience in martial arts, sports, and training, Emanuel has many sources of knowledge to pull from when taking on a client! We spoke with him to get to know him a little better.

What is your background in sports? Do you train? Participate? Watch?

Emanuel – My background in sports is a diverse one. I have played football for years, was on my high school track team, and I practice several forms of martial arts. I am not competing in anything as of yet but never say never! There may be a future where I step up my training and can join another team, but for now my focus is on sports massage.

How long have you been training?

Emanuel – I’ve been training my body in one way or another since I was a teen. Practice between games, runs in the morning before school and on the weekend, with regular gym days in between. as well. Exercise is very much an important part of me. I make sure I train no less than 3 times a week keep my mind and my body sharp.

Keeping his training schedule helped keep Emanuel sane during quarintine

Can you share one experience, as a person who knows their body, that has greatly impacted  the way you approach  massage?

Emanuel – One experience I have gone through that has impacted the way I approach  sports massage therapy was being treated by a massage therapist after a pretty bad back injury. I was sparring and was tossed by my partner. I took the fall pretty bad and I knew something was wrong. I saw several doctors but there was nothing to operate on, so all they did was give me painkillers. Finally the 3rd doctor I saw recomended a massage therapist. During the assesment she saw that I was limping and that my hips were uneven and went to work on me. I was sore aftetwards but after a couple of days I was limping or feeling the same pain in my back.

From then on I saw massage therapy as something that everyone could benefit from. I think it should be normal as going to the dentist.

How did you get into sports massage? 

Emanuel – I got into sports massage because as a personal trainer I wanted to further help people. I would often see similar injuries among my clients and sometimes I’d even be there when the injury happened! I wanted to be able to give them more help than telling them to ice it. Thanks to my training I know the anatomy even better. So now when I am treating a client who is active at the gym a lot or plays sports, I am in a better position to understand their injury and how to treat it. 

What is your best uh oh story? A time you really messed something up with your body.

Emanuel – I wouldn’t say “best” but my most memorable “uh oh” story was when I broke my ankle in football practice back in High School. I thought I had just sprained it at first, so I got up to walk off and ice it. When I tried to take a step I said to myself “UH OH!” realized I couldn’t walk and had to be assisted off the field.

What sets your sports massage apart from anyone else?

Emanuel – What sets my sports massage apart is my ability to pay attention to detail and communication. I believe if I’m in tune with what the patient is experiencing they will receive the best treatment.

If you could try any sport/or amazing physical activity what would it be?

Emanuel – One sport I would love to try is Gymnastics. It takes a TON of strength, coordination and stamina to pull off those routines.

What are your favorite kinds of people to treat and why?

Emanuel – I like treating athletes and other active people, especially people training for a game or competition. They usually want a very specific muscle group or body part to be worked on and I can focus on maximizing their results. I feel extra accomplished when they are satisfied with my work.

Is there anything we do not know about you we should?

Emanuel – I’m a huge video game fan, particularly fighting games like Mortal Kombat. 

If you had a super power what would it be?

Emanuel – It’s gotta be flight! Especially in New York City; I’d never have to wait for the train again!

If you want check out more of our therapists head over to our Massage Therapist Page and check them out!

Body Mechanics Orthopedic Massage

1 W 34th St
#204,
New York, NY 10001
Phone: 212-600-4808
Email: info@bodymechanicsnyc.com

Medical Massage Therapist Profile – Veronica

Body Mechanics Orthopedic Massage presents a profile on a face many of you already know, Veronica Sanabria! We sat down to learn more about her 16 years of massage experience and hear some stories she from before she joined Body Mechanics in 2019.

What is your clinical/career background and what drew you to medical massage?

Veronica – I was led to medical massage by a former employer. I worked with a sports medicine doctor who developed a unique practice. He incorporated multiple disciplines under one roof and blended them all to customize treatment for each individual patient. He didn’t try to address everyone’s issues one one blanket approach and I found that inspiring.

I followed that inspiration and learned many modalities of healing body work including ART (Active Release Therapy), deepened my understanding of sports massage, studied medical and pregnancy massage techniques and trigger point. 

Body Mechanics Orthopdic Massage medical massage therapist veronica
Veronica Sanabria

How long have you been practicing medical massage?

Veronica – I was originally licensed in Florida in 2000. I moved to New York and looked to expand my skill set and so I entered the  Swedish Institute of massage when I got here. I graduated and got my New York massage license in 2004. I’ve been working ever since. I worked in different settings from spas, to chiropractor clinics to health centers in Fortune 500 office buildings. I shifted my focus to medical massage 6 years ago.

Can you share one experience that has greatly impacted your massage?

Veronica – It’s difficult to choose just one client that has impacted me. I remember in Florida I had a return client who I did facials and massage for. One day she broke down crying. She told me that no one takes care of her, except me. THAT really resonated with me. She was a physical education teacher, a volunteer, and her mother’s caretaker. She kept pouring out of her cup, and it was empty. I helped her feel seen, heard and cared for. I’ll never forget that. Being able to provide physical as well as emotional healing to my clients is a gift I am so proud to be able to give.

What is your best “Uh-oh!” story? A time you really messed something up with your body, that helped inform your medical massage technique.

Veronica – Years ago I had a treated a client who was seeking a massage with very deep pressure. Before getting on the table she demaned that it to raised to its highest level so she wouldn’t have to get up from a lower height. Because the table was so high I didn’t have the right angle to use my weight to help increase pressure. So I could only rely on the muscles in my arm and fingers to do all the work. After an hour of that I felt like I pulled a muscle in my shoulder and had back pain for almost a week! I know now that I shoul’ve explained why the table needed to be lowered and worked in a way that would be best for both the client and myself. 

What are your favorite kinds of people to work on and why?

Veronica – I like people who challenge me. People who are suffering from a mystery pain or a chonric problem that they haven’t been able to adress in years. Going over their body and listening to their story using my skills to find and heal a problem they thought they would have to deal with forever gives me a real sense of accomplishment. I love weird injuries!

If you could try any sport or attend a special event what would it be?

Veronica – Soccer of hockey! I get a kick of adreline just watching either of these sports. I’d love to score the winning goal at the last second of a game.

What sets your medical massage apart from anyone else?

Veronica – What sets my work apart is my instinct. My senses engage completely while I work and I pick up on subtleties in my clients’ bodies and it informs my massage. Thanks to the doctor I worked for, I never go into a session thinking I have anything figured out or that there will be a simple fix, even if it is with a client I’ve seen many times before. I approach each appointment like it’s the first and focus on what body in front of me needs to heal as well as what the person needs.

Are there any oddball facts we do not know about you that you’d like to share?

Veronica – I love sci-fi novels and movies. Going to the movies on a hot summer day and enoying the AC and overpriced snacks is one of my favorite forms of self care.

Read up on our other massage therapists on our massage therapist profile page.

Body Mechanics Orthopedic Massage

1 W 34th St
#204,
New York, NY 10001
Phone: 212-600-4808
Email: info@bodymechanicsnyc.com

Sports and Medical Massage Therapist Profile – Zachary

Body Mechanics Orthopedic Massage is happy to introduce you to another new member of our team! Meet Zachary – a dancer, performer, mover and shaker. Zachary’s expressive and empathetic personality assists him in getting to the root of the problem with his clients, to fix issues they weren’t even aware were causing them distress.

Zachary gave us a peek behind the curtain as to what makes his sports massage therapy special and effective.

Body Mechanics Orthopedic Massage Sports Therapist Zachary
Zachary Koval Sports Massage Therapist

What is your background and what drew you to sports?

 Zachary – I was a soccer player growing up and I competed in the NYC triathlon a few years ago. I was also a personal trainer for several years, and have spent a good portion of my life in the weight room doing resistance training.

How long have you been training or working at it?

ZacharyBeing healthy and using my body to its fullest potential has been something that I’ve always enjoyed and been focused on. As I witnessed my father deal with chronic pain, illness, and physical disability through the years, I took it as inspiration to work (and play) to make sure my own body would last and allow me to enjoy every moment with it.

Can you share one experience as someone who uses their body, that has greatly impacted your massage?

ZacharyI first fell in love with bodywork through learning Thai massage. I was introduced to it as a recovery modality in the acro-yoga community I was a part of. In Thai massage the practitioner uses their whole bodies to stretch and support the receiver with acupressure and assisted yoga postures. It becomes almost a dance between the two.
I carry that energy and intention in my work, as I integrate my training and my own movement practices, even while just using my hands. There is a silent dialogue, conversation, and dance that is occurring, that provides a fluidity and deep connection throughout my work.

What is your best “Uh-oh!” story? A time you really F-d up doing something with your body that helped inform your medical massage technique.

Zachary –  I’ve often been of the personal mindset to just push through the pain. But in training for the triathlon, my body definitely got over taxed and I quickly learned the importance of allowing time for recovery and self-care

What are your favorite kinds of people to work on? 

 Zachary People who either already have a strong connected sense to their body or are open to developing that mind-body connection. Not everyone is able to articulate where, exactly, their pain but through a bit of light conversation I can phish the info out of them during their sports massage, but the ones who know exactly how I can help them are my favorites.

If you could try any sport/or amazing physical activity what would it be? 

Zahary I love gymnastics! Shapes and poses that seem to defy gravity, and yet through dedication and training somehow go from feeling impossible to becoming possible. And for a sport- I’ve always wanted to try Kitesurfing.

Tell us a little bit about some of the other hobbies you enjoy

ZacharyI’m a mover and dancer. Active in many ways- yoga and acro yoga, cycling, swimming, hiking, dancing, contact improv. I’m also a performer and love working in collaborative and physical theatre.

What sets your sports massage apart from anyone else?

Zachary I find that having a strong somatic understanding of my own body, combined with anatomical and physiological knowledge, has led to an strong intuitive sense of how to work with others’ bodies. By moving, stretching and sometimes injuring my body over the years, when a client and I narrow down their issue I can work fluidly through all the sports massage modalities I have trained in, from swedish to myofascial or neurofascial release, to trigger point orThai, to work out their issues with the perfect method.

Is there anything we do not know about you we should?

ZacharyI traveled across the country for a year after college dressed as Baloo the bear, performing in and directing children’s theater.

If you had a superpower what would it be?

ZacharyThe ability to pause time so that I could read and learn uninterrupted.

What was the last book you read?

ZacharyThe Overstory by Richard Powers. Life changing. Highly recommended.

Take a look at our other massage therapist profiles!

Body Mechanics Orthopedic Massage

1 W 34th St
#204,
New York, NY 10001
Phone: 212-600-4808
Email: info@bodymechanicsnyc.com

Medical Massage Therapist Profile – Meagen

Body Mechanics Orthopedic Massage is proud to bring you a profile on another new New York licensed massage therapist that has recently joined our team, Meagen! If you’re suffering from from chronic pain, stuff joints or have had a crick in your neck for a few months, medical massage therapy with Meagen might be for you.

We chatted with Meagen to learn about what makes her personal approach to medical massage stand out and while being effective!


What is your back ground and what drew you to science?

MeagenI have a degree in Occupational Studies of Massage Therapy and outside of that, did some coursework in psychology. I am endlessly fascinated by the human body and physiology, so massage therapy was a natural career choice. 

Can you share one experience treating someone that really impacted your view of treatment?

MeagenI once had a 3-hour session with a pro-lacrosse player with adhesive capsulitis — a frozen shoulder. The treatment was unlike any spa session I’ve done. It included a visual assessment, friction, passive range of motion, and Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation. The amount of mobility he regained afterward was incredible and it really highlighted just how much bodywork can be implemented in a medical way to achieve quantitative AND qualitative results! 

What is your best “Uh-oh!” story? A time you really F-d up doing something with your body that helped inform your medical massage technique.

MeagenAt one point I got mild ulnar neuropathy* from excessive forearm usage at some clients’ request. It made me realize that a conversation must be had with certain clients for them to understand that deep is not always ‘more effective’ when treating the body with massage. I changed my habits and no longer have the condition. 

*Neuropathy is numbness or pain caused by compression or damage to the nerves.

Do you have a bad science joke you like?

Meagen Why don’t ants get sick?  Because they have little anty bodies!  That one has been gotten more laughs now that we hear about antibodies every day.

If you could try any sport/or amazing physical activity what would it be?

MeagenDiving.

Or What was your favorite class in high school?

MeagenCollege Writing.

What are your favorite kinds of people to work with/what kind of injuries do you like to work with?

Meagen I love to work on people with myofascial restrictions because they get so much relief from each myofascial session! Their joy is contagious!

What sets your medical massage apart from anyone else?

MeagenIt is detail oriented and galvanizing. I don’t just absent massage a body; I can pinpoint the issues clients came in to address and the ones they didn’t know where causing the issues in the first place. Then I teach them how to recognize these matters before they become more significant.

Is there anything we do not know about you we should? (Odd ball facts?)

MeagenAlthough I call New York my home I’m a world traveler, and the one thing I might enjoy more than myofascial release is hula hooping. In fact, I’m a hula hoop champion!

Missed our earlier profiles? Check out our other blogs.

If you want to check out our other massage therapists you can head over to our massage therapist profile page.

Body Mechanics Orthopedic Massage

1 W 34th St
#204,
New York, NY 10001
Phone: 212-600-4808
Email: info@bodymechanicsnyc.com