This testimonial has been in my heart for quite some time now, yet it has taken me awhile to put it in written form. I don't know if words can adequately do justice to the impact Deb Preachuk has made in my life.
My journey with Deb began in May 2007 after my health had hit "rock bottom", and I felt as if I had nowhere else to turn. After the birth of my fourth child nearly five years ago, my health took a turn for the worse. I began experiencing severe back and neck pain that could only be relieved by frequent visits to the chiropractor. The relief was always short-lived, and often the pain would return within hours of an appointment. I kept telling myself that I had an unexplained injury that would just go away with time, but it never did. Nearly 1.5 years after the pain began, I was handed what felt like a death sentence -- the diagnosis of Fibromyalgia. I was told there were many things I could no longer and should no longer even try to do, including lifting weights, running, etc. -- many of the things that had been a part of my life and that I enjoyed doing. I suddenly started to feel like I was trapped in a body that was not mine, and I started to become afraid of doing anything that might cause more pain.
My diagnosis of Fibromyalgia was only the beginning of a long list of diagnoses that were handed to me by doctors in the next couple of years -- Degenerative Disc Disease, Scoliosis, Migraine Headaches, Adrenal Insufficiency, Osteopenia, Chostocondroitis, and Asthma. I was also told that I had already lost 1.5 inches of height by the age of 35 -- the amount of height that a woman in her 70s would expect to have lost. These diagnoses were not helpful to me because they were simply symptomatic descriptions of what I already knew. What I wanted to know was not what was wrong with me (I already knew that and was living it every day), but rather what I could do about it. And it was so frustrating to me that the only thing medical doctors could offer me was either a "we're sorry, there isn't much we can do for you" apology OR a host of painkillers and medications with their own list of health-compromising side effects.
For three years, I spent time treating myself through proper nutrition, walking, and significant lifestyle changes. I continued to visit my chiropractor on occasion, but I still hurt on a daily basis and needed something more. My pain had decreased significantly over those years to where I could at least function, but I realized that I wanted to do more than just "exist..." I wanted to live again! I wanted to be the mom my kids deserved; the wife my husband remembered; and the lively, active person I used to be. I was ready to get better.
It was then that I remembered my chiropractor telling me about an amazing woman named Deb Preachuk who had helped more of his patients than anyone else had ever been able to. I remember my first phone call with Deb so clearly, primarily because it was the first day I started to have hope that I wasn't doomed to a life of pain and misery. I had been an active person my entire life -- a ballet dancer at a young age; an active health club employee and member who loved cardio and weight-lifting exercises; a runner and long-distance walker; etc. I had always been slender and in shape, but suddenly I found myself with atrophied muscles and weight that I couldn't lose. My years of pain had resulted in a sedentary lifestyle, and I was no longer the person I had been. Deb, however, understood that I wanted to be that person again and break free from my tired, sore body.
I began weekly private sessions with Deb and immediately noticed a difference. Deb explained that my pain, limited mobility, and scoliosis were due to muscle imbalance and poor alignment of my spine, hips, and shoulders. After years of pain, it seemed hard to believe that it could really be so simple, but the reduced pain I experienced after doing my daily exercises was proof that it really was. Each week, Deb gave me a set of exercises that were designed to address my unique issues. The most remarkable thing for me was that I could actually do the exercises and not experience debilitating pain the next day. Up until going to Deb, any attempt I had made to strengthen my muscles resulted in horrible pain in the days following.
Since going to Deb, I was also able to cut my use of painkillers, as well as my dependence on nutrition and vitamin supplements that I was using just to be able to function. A host of other symptoms have improved or disappeared as well...I no longer suffer from insomnia despite struggling with it for years. My asthma is basically a non-issue, and most people cannot believe that the exercises Deb gave me are more effective in helping me breathe than any medication I had been prescribed. Additionally, I am less chemically sensitive and have fewer digestive problems, memory problems, and fatigue.
One thing that came out of my time with Deb is something that extended beyond the postural alignment realm and spilled over into other areas of my life. I distinctly remember telling Deb during one of my sessions how much I loved painting (as in walls and rooms) but that I no longer could due to my fibromyalgia pain. She very seriously looked at me and told me that if I wanted to paint, I should paint. She told me that in fact if there was anything I wanted to do, I should just do it. If it caused pain, she said, just stop doing it and try again another time. It may seem strange that someone giving me permission to pick up a paint roller could be such a life-changing moment, but it was. Suddenly, someone was telling me that I COULD do things, unlike doctors who told me that I couldn't do them because of some mysterious pain condition. It was at that moment I was able to come out of my curled-up corner of pain and become the person I used to be.
Thanks to Deb, I have regained strength that I had lost during my worst years of pain. In the process, I experienced the side benefit of losing weight. I have also done things I was previously afraid to or unable to do...I exercised my muscles again. I stained my deck. I repainted rooms by myself. I've gone on long drives without pain. I got pregnant again. I now play with my kids, do yard work, and plan social activities without the fear of pain. Sometimes my husband is more afraid for me than I am, but I always tell him, "Deb would tell me not to be afraid." For anyone who knows what it is like to live within chronic pain, being able to set aside the fear of pain is a huge step.
I would be remiss if I said that the road to recovery was always easy. There were difficult moments for me, and moments when I wanted to give up. There were times when my pain was still bad, and times when not listening to Deb resulted in setbacks. But I knew that Deb was my last chance at getting better...I knew that God had sent her into my life, and that I could not quit. I needed her to help me because no one else had been able to. Deb stood by me and got me through the toughest moments during my healing.
I recently moved out of state, so unfortunately I can no longer attend sessions with Deb. But the tools she gave me for living pain-free continue to bless my life daily. I still do my exercises because they really work, and the return of pain when I don't do them is a reminder of how effective they really are.
I will forever be grateful for the impact Deb has had -- and continues to have -- in my life.
~ Linda G., Washington, D.C.
Thank you, thank you.
I have read Deb's page for a long time. I have always had muscle problems on the right side of my body related to my job. One day I had a very sore arm and neck. I looked in the mirror and I noticed my right shoulder was lower than the left.
I did a couple of her exercises to balance my hips. I felt better and when I looked in the mirror my shoulders looked even.
I contacted Deb for my own program and could not be happier! The exercises seem simple but each one is a powerful tool to get your body back in balance.
A great testimonial comes from my massage therapist I have been seeing for many years for the same problem. He asked me what I had been doing because my hips, lower back and pelvis were aligned. That was always an area he had to concentrate on.
My only wish is that I lived in Minnesota so I could take all of Deb's classes. Deb please clone yourself and send one to Manitoba.
~ Georgette J., Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
I don't believe I ever got the chance to say thank you for all your help! It's been a few years since we last met. I was in your office with major low back pain, pain that prevented me from doing all the things I love. I was starting to feel hopeless, starting to believe my fitness days were over. After an hour long consultation with you my faith was restored. You looked me in the eyes, told me my strength would come back with the right exercises and that I just needed to trust my body and find the confidence to push through. Once I received my plan I began the exercises twice daily and after time I was able to get back the life I had. There's no better feeling, I feel stronger every day. I can run, I can lift, I can move with confidence, I even started boxing again!
So thank you Deb, thank you for all your help!
~ Danielle F.
Thank you Deb for all you do for me, my family, and all you reach with your important information. As a client of yours I feel incredibly blessed. I wish I could give you back the world as you have given the world back to me. I love coming to work with you. Thank you for all you do Deb!
- Ann M.
I am a recently certified Postural Alignment Specialist starting my practice. I need to create a website and sought Deb’s guidance.
I’ve participated in the recent study groups she's taught for EU. From her professionalism, clarity and passion for sharing her expertise I knew I wanted Deb on my business team as my mentor. I was not disappointed. In our session she wholeheartedly shared her experiences, best practices, do’s and don’ts, etc.
Deb’s support has given me a sense of the joy and satisfaction creating a business can bring to my life. Thanks Deb!
~ Natalie Graniela, New York
Just wanted to thank you again for a great teaching seminar (PAS 1). I learned so much and appreciate your time and patience. This get me even more excited to move forward and be the best I can be.
I have just received the gift of Deb Preachuk’s exquisite therapeutic expertise and mind-blowing teaching skill in the Minnesota PAS 2 seminar. Not only does she use the tools of the Method with surety and sensitivity, she is also adept in empowering others to do the same. After taking her 3-day seminar I returned home to deliver my first post-Deb session. I felt newly confident and so fully prepared to serve my client. Here is what that client wrote, post-session:
"I was just brought to tears. I bent over to pick up a toy and for the first time in 2 years I bent over pain FREE!!! It was an awesomely overwhelming feeling and I love it."
In this session I provided my client with both reliable physical guidance and centered emotional support. This occurred because of my increased knowledge and ease . I know that anyone dedicated to helping people heal their bodies and lives with the Egoscue Method will know how deeply grateful I feel to Deb for helping me grow and succeed.
~ Kat Draego, Charlottesville, Virginia
Deb - Thank you so much for having me in your gorgeous home studio and sharing your vast knowledge of The Egoscue Method. You did such a great job of mentoring and getting my mind to think in a different direction - critical for The Method. I really enjoyed my time with you and appreciate your time spent immensely. Thank you!
~ Wendy W., California
I thought the seminar (PAS1) was great and couldn't be more thankful that you took the extra time on some of the topics, I really did learn a lot.
~ T.S., South Dakota
Thank you once more for the informative conference call and the advice on leading a seminar. It really helped me develop a good plan and regain confidence in my skills.
God has great gifted you as a teacher and mentor! Thank u!!!
~ Becca D., Oklahoma
Listened to a recorded class led by my favorite instructor: Deb Grande Preachuk while floating in the pool. I learned a ton about helping breast cancer survivors who are dealing with chronic pain AND ... got to spend some time in the pool Thanks Deb!!!
~ Robin B., Hawaii
I enjoyed the one on one time you spent with me last month discussing and reviewing a couple of key components in the Postural Assessment using the Egoscue Method. I look forward to future mentoring sessions as collaboration with colleagues always enhances our own skills. The pdf notes you sent as a follow up were definitely beneficial for future reference.
God has so gifted you with the ability to teach and communicate clearly. I'm always blessed by your instructions Deb.
~ Brenda O.
Thank you so much for taking the time to speak with me yesterday and for being honest with me. I truly value your input because I believe you are a truly gifted postural alignment specialist who has helped so many people overcome their issues with pain and regain their lives.
Deb ... you gave me what I needed to deliver this kind of session. I am so blessed by your exquisite therapeutic expertise and your mind-blowing teaching skill .
Good good good good good good goooooooooood job ... I am fully appreciative.
~ Kat D., Virginia
Hi Deb - You are amazing! Thank you very much for your review - I see a lot of helpful points that I totally agree with.
I actually cannot believe how many good recommendations you gave me in such a short period of time! They all make perfect sense - makes me wonder why I did not think about it myself :-)?
Thank you VERY much. You made my day and made me feel that I can succeed :-).
Deb - Thank you for being such a huge inspiration to me and wonderful mentor! I wouldn't be where I am at without your encouraging words and you believing in me.
Deb- I am very pleased with the mentoring session we had. Thank you very much for all the information you provided. I now have a long to do list but it makes me feel that I am moving somewhere rather than being stuck.
~ N. D.
Deb - Thank you so much for being willing to give your time and advice as I embark on this new journey. I value your advice so much. The way you teach your classes inspire and challenge me physically and emotionally. I am so grateful our paths crossed and look forward to more fun times in the future. Love ya!
~ M. L.
Thanks again Deb for your time and words of wisdom and encouragement!
~ Angela L., Bentonville, Arkansas
I loved talking with you Deb! Just no one in the world but one of us Egoscue "ites" can understand our thrill in loving and appreciating that this world of movement is so transformational. It's so much fun, not to mention beneficial to learn from you and share with you. Thanks so much for the many tips in so many areas. I'm inspired!
~ Barbara B., Texas
Deb - Thank you for the awesome, insightful and full of wisdom PAS Study Group ! The energy you exude and dynamic vitality for life is CONTAGIOUS!
Deb - Thanks so much for taking the time to answer my questions. Your response is very helpful. You are such a valuable resource to those of us who want to learn more about being successful Egoscue University Certified practitioners and business owners.
Deb - Thank you so much fro having me in you gorgeous home studio and sharing your vast knowledge of The Egoscue Method. You did such a great job of mentoring and getting my mind to think in a different direction, critical for The [Egoscue] Method. I really enjoyed my time with you and appreciate you time spent immensely. Thank you!
~ Wendy W.
Deb - Thank you again for ALL that you do towards making our world a magnificent place filled with passion and incredible growth with your wisdom.
Deb - I am very impressed with your teaching style and looking forward to learning as much as I can from you.
Deb - Thank you so much for giving your time and advice as I embark on this new journey. I value your advice so much and the way you teach your classes inspire and challenge me physically and emotionally. I am so grateful our paths crossed.
I am so thankful for you, I am returning to my optimistic, outgoing, energetic self and have literally cried tears of joy over feeling myself again, not just acting like it in public ... I just want you to know just how valuable you and your experience are, if you didn't know! I appreciate you!
~ Tina S., Maui, HI
The best day of my week is the day I get to go see Deb at Pain Free Posture MN. Even when I'm having no issues (been seeing her weekly for over 2 years) I learn something new and useful I can do and always leave feeling balanced and strong. She has been a key person in my journey to not only seeking out how to live a life pain free, but also on how to take the steps to becoming a better person.
If I am having an issue she has always been able to see what is going on and provide me with the corrective exercises to resolve it. In fact, all minor issues I've had since starting with Deb I've been able to have resolved in one session with her. She is THAT GOOD! I am so thankful for the random events that brought Deb into my life! Thanks for ALL you do Deb!
~Ann M, Elko-New Market, MN
You are the most phenomenal teacher. I have learned so much about strength from you, and I look so forward to your classes. The delight of my week.
~ Sandra F, Lakeville, MN
Deb has been fantastic to work with. I started working with her as my postural alignment specialist a little over a month ago and at the time could barely do anything. Deb has been great at finding ways to challenge me while working within my limitations and I have seen tremendous progress in a short time under her tutelage. She is positive, encouraging, and creative in finding the best ways to help her clients succeed. I have a tremendous amount of experience in the fitness field and have never met anyone with as extensive of knowledge of body mechanics and the human body as Deb. I would recommend her to anyone as a trainer/specialist.
~ Matt Anderson, Blaine, MN
Thank you for the vacation menu! I'm so happy that I was able to do it every day including the supine groin stretch. This is the best I've felt on vacation in 8 years!
~ Jill S., Boston, MA
Deb Grande Preachuk you wow'd me today! You are so good at what you do. I left smiling and I'm still smiling. I don't know one person that wouldn't benefit from your knowledge. Only regret I have is not being aware of what you do and how you could help me sooner! Thanks again!
~ Cheryl F., Rosemount, MN
I have worked with Deb in many capacities over the past several years and will say that she is a "wealth of information and knowledge." She has helped me in so many ways:
- As my instructor in preparing me for my own certification for (Egoscue University) PAS 1 level, and I feel that her teaching method is what brought it all together for me…
- As my mentor, helping me learn and prepare for my own business…
- As my therapist who helps me with my posture/fascia issues which not only leaves me feeling great, but also teaches me how to further help my clients…
- She has also become a good friend who I am very grateful to have.
Her knowledge and combined therapies make such a huge difference in helping everyone to heal and take charge of their own health. She is awesome!
~ Deb W., Ohio
Deb, thanks so much for a fantastic and challenging session today. I left your studio with great energy, a sense of hope that I haven't had in a very long time, an uplifted spirit -- and significantly less pain. Your words have been ringing in my head all day: I AM NOT BROKEN. Thanks for your holistic care -- body, brain, heart, spirit. I'm grateful for you!
~ Alyson R., Inver Grove Heights, MN
Incredible session with my phenomenal posture alignment therapist Deb Grande Preachuk today--have never felt my muscles and body so calm and loose after today's fascia release!!! If you have tried everything and are still suffering with pain, Deb will help you heal. Never give up!!
~ Barb C., Scottsdale, AZ
I just wanted to write to you and thank you for teaching me the benefits of correct posture during exercise. Throughout my day, whether it’s at work or play, I am always trying to correct myself by making sure that my shoulders are not glued up to my ears. I will take what I have learned from you and incorporate it in my workouts, Zumba, Hot Yoga or Barre classes and Barbell. Everyone needs a personal trainer at their side everyday telling them to put their shoulders in their house and remember to always smile at yourself when you look in the mirror. Thanks to you I can now do that with little hesitation.
Thanks again Deb.
~ Gail B., Rosemount, MN
Thanks for spending time with me yesterday and teaching me much about my body and how to begin to right the many wrongs that have occurred to it over the years. I enjoyed your gentle direction and guidance.
~ C.K., Forest Lake, MN
Back from a month in Sri Lanka and India. I used the exercises you taught to alleviate pain. They worked better than prescription meds. Thanks again.
~ Anthony P., Prior Lake, MN
...you are, in my opinion, the best Egoscue teacher EVER ...
~ Kat D., Charlottesville, VA
When I first experienced the gravity shift in my body from doing the the static back press for a couple of hours after I had read The Egoscue Method of Health Through Motion, I knew to my core that this method worked.
I stayed with the book for a very long time until I realized that I needed help. That's when I found Deb online and have been working with her for 4 sessions now. Incredible!
The changes that are occurring are amazing and shows her gift at applying the method and her background in other disciplines. She also takes time to keep up a blog that goes into other areas that are related (negativity, food issues etc..) and challenges herself and those she helps to seek the higher path.
Deb, may you always be in unison with your highest self! You rule!
~ Joshuah J.
Thank you so much for empowering me!! We arrived in Johannesburg at 4:00 after a 3.5 hr flight to Atlanta and a 15.5 hr flight to Africa. I made sure to do a lot of walking in between flights and Egoscue sitting exercises with a pillow while on the plane (shoulder rolls, scapular squeezes, pillow squeezes etc.). I'm feeling very good considering!!
Another 2 short flights tomorrow but I know I'll be fine!!
Thanks again for helping me get back on track:)
~ Barb C., Scottsdale, AZ
I am enjoying an awareness of my body and movements; I like feeling a response in places--for example, hamstrings and glutes. They feel like they have had a workout and I rarely feel them at all or am unaware of either area normally.
~ M. H.
Hi Deb. Thank you so much for today. It was fantastic!!!. Just a great morning. You are a real pro. I learned so much. Thank you for you your desire to relieve pain and help people.You must get a great deal of satisfaction which is well deserved.I cannot wait to see results from my new menu.
~ Donald D., Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Day 3 of doing my mentor's (Deb Grande Preachuk) favorite pain mitigating menu!!
My hips feel fantastic!! My ankle with Tendonitis is WAY better!! My stiff neck and shoulders are feeling better!
And when I walk I don't swing my feet way out in front like usual (using my heels to drag me forward)....now my feet land directly under my hips and my heels lift off the ground in back very quickly and lightly!
This means my hips are flexing and extending better. Therefore my glutes are activating properly and my hamstrings are releasing!!
~ Becca D., Tulsa, OK
I enjoyed the one on one time you spent with me last month discussing and reviewing a couple of key components in the Postural Assessment using the Egoscue Method. I look forward to future mentoring sessions as collaboration with colleagues always enhances our own skills. The pdf notes you sent as a follow up were definitely beneficial for future reference.
I just did one of my mentor's (Deb Grande Preachuk) favorite Egoscue posture menus!! Kicked my butt in a good way!!
Afterwards I felt my hips in total alignment!! Felt amazing!!! I was like "Wow!! So that's what that feels like!!" Lol!!
~ Becca D., Tulsa, OK
All the other things I have tried from Chiro, Physio (Physical Therapy), Athletic Therapy, Acupuncture, Massage, the list is almost endless have not shown me the improvement I have seen in slightly under 3 months of Egoscue Postural Therapy
~ Donald D., Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
I have the utmost respect for you as a person and an incredible healer!! I can't imagine not being able to work with you. You have helped me so much and the calmness and motivation and optimism I feel after our sessions compares to nothing else.
~ Barb C., Scottsdale, AZ
Thanks for spending time with me yesterday and teaching me much about my body and how to begin to right the many wrongs that have occurred to it over the years. I enjoyed your gentle direction and guidance.
Thank you so much for all your kind attention to me so far!
I've done the exercises twice now, and I cried a little more yesterday, today I was laughing a lot because it feels so good to be working the blind spots! The work is reaching places I didn't know existed and it feels like a scab itching and healing over or like a cork popping open.
Today I started to get the point of the opposite hand-leg glides, the first day my left hip didn't move, and I didn't get it, but today it's starting to stretch.
I did my t'ai chi yesterday too, and worked with leveling my hips with each other, and tilting my pelvis more correctly. I found a tight spot above my right hip on the back that I never realized before, and remembered that feeling from a teen-age roller- skating injury! And the front of my left hip-joint didn't want to stretch that way but now I know it should be stretching there and that feeling is not an over-stretch. And my right leg/ankle feels strong when my pelvis is correct, I don't really get why but I can feel it!
I also walked my 5 miles and my right ankle by the end started to feel like the bones were starting to sink back together the right way, the beginning of a good change.
So anyway thanks so much, I know I'm just getting started but I love it so far. I'm glad you can see what I need.
~ Mary B., Minneapolis, MN
I suffered an injury from a fall, which is what brought me to Deb's studio.
I know I had posture issues that were easy to ignore in my busy life, as I was not having pain. The fall was a blessing in disguise, as I could no longer put my issues on the back burner any longer. I had immediate relief after my first session with Deb, and left feeling hopeful that this state would become permanent with the exercise program Deb was designing for me.
I did not want to go to a physical therapist as prescribed by my doctor. He said I would need PT for at least a month. The reason being, my daughter and husband had very little benefits from their experiences with physical therapy when they had injuries in the past.
My daughter is an athlete who went to Deb with a friend to condition for dance. Deb not only helped my daughter with conditioning, but helped her eliminate lingering issues the physical therapists had failed to deal with, despite multiple modalities being used. She went to four different PT's with no full resolution, and was told by her doctors that she would always have pain, and was told to medicate and ice for it. Deb not only resolved this, but also corrected the scoliosis in my daughter's back. She was told by her pediatricians that her problem was skeletal, but it was not. Thanks to Deb my daughter has the gift of life-long pain free posture.
The beauty of Egoscue, is that Deb as your therapist, empowers you as a patient to correct your own posture with her intuitive guidance and instruction. I am no athlete, by any means, and if Deb can get me comfortable and understanding the subtleties of how to correct my body movements, anyone can learn! The exercises are gentle, and Deb is gifted and trained at knowing what your body can handle. Her instruction and guidance is so supportive, and left me feeling confident and assured that I could do this.
I cannot get over how good it feels to get my muscles going, and how good Egoscue makes me feel. I am really beginning to feel how to move my shoulder blades - Deb demonstrated to me what I do, and what I should be doing, and it really made something click. At first, my posture was so messed up, that I could not even feel my shoulder blades moving, even when Deb guided me gently with her hands through the movements. As I am regaining function, I can now feel and control the movement, and correct my posture. It is such a gift.
After only two weekly sessions with Deb, and a half-an-hour a day doing the program designed for me to do in the comfort of my own home, I have seen a dramatic change in my posture. It feels so great to check my posture in the mirror and not see a hunched over back. I feel so empowered, and my body and spirit just soar! I can even correct my posture without seeing myself, which a month ago would have been impossible. In fact, even with seeing myself, I could not stand in a good posture. It is amazing that these simple exercises can change things so quickly!
I am pain-free and look forward to the benefits of having good correct posture.
If you have pain, or even if you don't, you owe it to yourself to have the best posture you can. It is a gift your body and spirit will thank you for. It is one of the best things you will ever do for your health. I know down the road, my overall health will be so much better with the tools I have been given. Thank you Deb, for sharing your gifts and knowledge with me.
~ Jeannie W., Austin, TX
I can't say enough about the amazing work that Deb does!
Finding her has saved me from so much pain, pain I thought I would just have to live with despite my efforts in years of different types of physical therapy. Their only answer was surgery and that wasn't what I wanted to hear. I'm so glad I never went that route and was able to find Deb.
The few times I've fallen into some pain since I've started, Deb is always able to run me through a menu and I'm pain free again. I love that I can do the exercises at night before bed and it helps me stay pain free and I'm relaxed for bed.
Going to a session with Deb is the highlight of my week where I get to learn the amazing capabilities of my body that I never thought would be possible. People occasionally ask me about my back now and I say, "Oh, that's not a problem. I'm fixed!" It is possible and it's amazing. The Egoscue and Pilates methods at the hands of Deb is almost magical. It's the answer.
You won't regret coming to her instead of the third time back at the physical therapist, or the next doctor who might be able to help. It's your health. It's the most important thing. No reason to put it on the back burner.
~Ann M., Elko-New Market, MN
This is the place that (my husband) went to right before we went to Orlando and he had been having chronic back pain for months and he described her as "phenomenal".... I actually don't think I have ever heard him use that word in 32 years of marriage!!
He was there about 2 hours and she designs stretches that will fix you!!! We played 126 holes of golf in 7 days and Rick was and still is 100% pain free!!!
I have read the book that she is trained in, Pain Free, based on the "Egoscue Method" and Jack Nicklaus wrote the forward...Egoscue kept him golfing before he was even famous!!!
You may want to try her out!!!
~ Patti C., Prior Lake, MN
Hi Deb! I am still feeling good today, and I can tell my muscles are waking up! My drive home was actually pain free!
I had so much fun moving around my house picking things up off the floor, doing housework, basically doing whatever I wanted to at home without any fear! Because I felt so good, I forgot to worry about 'what might happen' or if I might be 'injuring myself even further'! I felt so free! I keep checking those feet, opening my hands, returning to Static Back when I felt stiff, walking with hands laced behind my head (and my "butterfly" open wide)... and standing back against the wall to remind my head where it should be. I even tried some dreaded sitting, feet pointing forward, and nothing bad happened! I laughed a lot when those thoughts came up. Much more interesting than laying flat on my back all day!
I am so excited by how much better I feel already and how much better I am going to feel as I progress! Yesterday, my husband told me that he could see the excitement in my eyes. Today, I noticed that when I stand my feet are lined up almost as they should be. Amazing!
Thank you for the exercises - I've been doing them every day and am having a much better week than last week! :)
It's interesting that I feel like my left leg has been re-positioned since my appointment - it hasn't hurt, but it feels like it's almost going a slightly new direction.
Deb - Thank you so so much! I feel very good tonight. I went grocery shopping when I left your studio and felt like I was gliding around on a cloud!
~ A. B.
Deb - I just wanted to take a second to thank you for all that you do, I know how hard it is and can be on a person. Thanks so much for helping to give me my body back and all your great attention to detail. I believe that everything happens for a reason and that you not only came into my life so that I could be strong and healthy again. You came into my life to transform my teaching and what I do. We don't always see the path but if we are paying attention it will show its self to us.
Thanks sooooo much!
~ A. R.
Happy Holidays Deb,
On one of the busiest days of the year I was at Barnes & Noble (Mall of America) looking for the “Pain Free” book.
After a few minutes of futile searching I asked an employee where I could find the books by the author “E-gos-cue.” Her response was immediate…” You mean Pain Free by Peter Egoscue ?”
It turned out that she not only knew the book and had read it…but had been a regular client of yours for the last 3 years. She couldn’t stop singing your praises…congratulations.
It also turned out that Barnes & Noble had sold out of the book. It’s time to tell Pete’s publisher to fire up the printing presses…you’re going to need a lot more books. This trend is at the “tipping point” (read “Tipping Point” by Malcolm Gladwell)
This Christmas…when you can slow down for a minute…take a big (yoga) breath…then think of all the people who are enjoying a pain-free holiday because of you. Enjoy…you’ve earned it!
Best wishes to you and your family in 2012,
~ M. P.
Deb – I thank you for your introduction to the Egoscue book, your exercises and your patience with my awkward attempts at yoga. You have helped get me back on the road (literally) and running after that ill-timed shopping cart hit my Achilles tendon. Thank you for your contribution to my health, well-being and improvements on the marathon circuit.
Deb - My knee is already starting to feel better. One interesting note from the chiropractor visit - besides the knee (the chiropractor said nothing was wrong and just to ice it), he gave me a back tune-up.... BUT.... drum roll please.... he couldn't find anything to correct! Back and neck were very solid and straight.
I think that's a big testimony.
~ P. S.
"I can't remember the last time I felt this good, must be well over 5 years"..... WOW!
Hi Deb - Thank you so much for the appointment yesterday. It's so nice to have more of an understanding on what is going on with my body. I'm off to do my exercises. Have a great weekend!
I can't believe that I am 100% Pain Free after only two menus. I've taken months off to rehab, had over 2000 injections into my back, and have even contemplated suicide. It's like a miracle....I can’t thank you enough. It’s like your giving me my life back.
~ B. J.
When I walk my body tends to go in its new position. I feel like I am walking bow-legged and pigeon-toed. Then I go look in the mirror. I am not pigeon-toed at all. My feet are straight! My knee is much better when walking and doing straight forward movement. I have very little pain! It feels like a miracle!
I am so pleased with my progress so far!
Deb - I just had my annual physical and was told that I'm a half inch taller than I was last year. I'm certain it is because of Egoscue!
Deb thank you so much for today! You are such a blessing...it is very apparent that God is working through you to deliver healing. I appreciate you taking the time to share your story with me, it has given me peace and patience in my own life's journey and what is to come.
~ J. F.
I just wanted to send you a note and tell you that you have really, truly, made a difference in my life. I have been taking yoga for around 13 years at many different places, and you are the most knowledgeable and fabulous instructor I've ever worked with. I leave each class feeling as if I've learned something.
In addition, you have made me go out of my comfort zone and learn Zumba, which is now my favorite class! Your style of teaching has made it possible for me to learn what I was struggling with in other classes, and I totally love it!
Thirdly, you introducing me to Pain Free has made a big change in my life. I have changed how I sit, stand, walk, and so on, which has removed my lower back pain entirely and made me more aware of how my body should work.
Thank you for all that you do.
I started working with Deb Preachuk just over a year ago. Since I began seeing her, I have discontinued my frequent trips to the chiropractor.
She has taught me exercises that I can use to self-manage any back and neck discomfort.
I have also learned from Deb how to correctly engage my abs while working out as some of the incorrect form I had learned was contributing to my back pain.
Deb is truly great to work with and in addition to a great Pilates instructor I love the friendship we have developed. She is such a positive and motivating person.
You're the best. Thanks.
I wanted to thank you for all that we accomplished today. Seeing as I have tried so many different therapies and treatments plus stretching often and seen little improvement, I would never have imagined that my shoulder could be pain FREE so quickly. I am realizing how good my shoulder really is feeling as I type! Typing always induced great shoulder pain and I feel nothing! Very impressed. I look forward to receiving the exercise list so I can keep the improvement going.
In the last 10 years I have had multiple surgeries on my feet and both shoulders. After months of not being able to sleep because my shoulder pain had returned, I went to my doctor who prescribed yet another surgery. Looking for alternatives, I went to my chiropractor who referred me to Deb Preachuk–He wasn’t sure what she did, but said she had helped several of his patients.
Deb explained that the multiple surgeries I had endured were simply fixing symptoms that were being caused by a misalignment in other parts of my body. Until I fixed my alignment issues, the symptoms would periodically reappear. An alternative would be to eliminate the symptoms forever by correcting the underlying postural mis-alignment problems through a very specific corrective exercise program (Posture Alignment Therapy).
This sounded too good to be true, but the Egoscue Method article and book (Pain Free by Pete Egoscue) she gave me made a lot of sense, so I decided to take a leap of faith and started working with her. Initially I attended monthly sessions with Deb where she taught me a new set of exercises, and then I did them on my own on a daily basis (take home menu). Progress was slow but sure, and I was encouraged enough to start seeing her twice a month. Within 10 months my shoulder pain was totally gone!
Last Christmas I started to experience knee pain. The day after Christmas it became so severe that I called Deb to request an emergency visit. She had me come right over, identified the problem, and showed me how my posture was related to my pain. Deb said it was “fixable” through corrective exercises, and that if we gave the body a chance to align properly, the knee had a chance to heal. (I later had an orthopedic surgeon take an MRI and diagnosed my knee pain as a torn meniscus that needed to be surgically repaired.)
Now, after 10 months with Deb and no surgery, my knee pain is completely gone! We are now working on correcting the origins of my structural misalignment (the dysfunctions at my load joints) that has created all the compensation movement with my feet and shoulders.
Deb Preachuk has been excellent at explaining to me where my postural alignment has been abnormal according to the “blue-print” design of the human body, what that has caused my frame to do, and how that has affected my movement.
She does an excellent job of explaining why certain exercises are assigned to me, and how they will help modify and ultimately change and improve the way I move.
Because I am pain free we are now able to do STOTT Pilates sessions now to aid in strengthening the correct muscles and movement patterns.
Deb has always been flexible with our appointments……if I could only come once a month that was fine. She has helped me to become pain free, and I am now on my way to changing a lifetime of dysfunctional ankles and compensations with weekly visits. I am a huge advocate of Deb and her work …she is truly a phenomenal professional with the ability to help in a medically non-invasive way.
~ D. D., Winnipeg, Manitoba
Deb, - Your 7:00 a.m. Saturday Hot Yoga class (at Lakeville Life Time Fitness) is awesome. To me it’s like getting FREE private yoga sessions. Thanks for teaching this great class!
Deb - My shoulder is 100% healed and my knee pain is practically gone thanks to your[Egoscue] advice and easing into my running with baby steps about 10 wks ago now. I respect you as a teacher so much…of all the classes I’ve gone to in the past 6 months you are the most inspirational/knowledgeable teacher I’ve had.
Deb.... I can tell you for certain that your program saved me a lot of embarrassment last week. I did Vacation Bible School with 8 little ones. I didn't like sitting cross legged on the floor for a couple of hours a day... but I did it and got up successfully too! Thank you!
My hips are much better. I don't wake up in the night from sleeping on either side. And I can go up and down stairs without a twinge. And my low back doesn't "catch" anymore. I am hitting the ball much better in golf partly because my lower body feels more stable. All good things.
I want to thank you Deb for the gift of reclaimed mobility and freedom from pain. It is priceless. Thank you so much for your encouragement and prayers.
I started Posture Alignment Therapy with Deb Preachuk in January 2008.
I remember the first time I called her. It was my birthday and I was in so much pain. I had seen four different chiropractors in a matter of two weeks.
I was angry, sad, and tired of dealing with pain. I was unable to do simple daily activities without causing pain. Some of the activities I wanted to be able to do were clean my home, actively spend time with my children, play sports, travel, and eventually return to work.
Deb told me that I would start to feel better after approximately four visits and after the eleventh visit I would feel great. I didn’t believe her. I thought this would be another method that may help relieve my pain but would not completely rid of my pain. I was wrong.
I completed my sessions with Deb in July 2008 and have not returned for another appointment. I feel so much better physically and mentally after completing my Posture Alignment Therapy with Deb.
I continue to do specified posture alignment exercises daily. Deb continues to support me and provides positive encouragement.
~ Angie A.
I first met Deb Preachuk in a group fitness class. Deb mentioned she was a Pilates instructor.
I started taking private STOTT Pilates classes with her and then was introduced to the Egoscue Method.
Deb has really put a new spin on working out. Deb takes exercising beyond the traditional workouts, creating a new level of exercise that I have not experienced before. Each time I visit her, she has something new for me to explore.
After a workout session with her I leave the workout feeling great. These experiences have created a greater overall knowledge of my body's capabilities and future potential.
~ Holly A., Lakeville, MN
Deb is a miracle worker! She helped my daughter correct her scoliosis. We had been told time and time again at doctors visits as she was growing, that it was a skeletal deformity.
My daughter has no more back pain, and has become much less accident prone due to better balance after working with Deb. We saw differences immediately, and huge changes in just three sessions. Her knowledge and understanding of the body leads her to unravel things that one would not think to be doable.
When I first started working with Deb I was a 52 year old formerly active and somewhat athletic male who had spent years dealing with steadily increasing hip and groin pain. This steadily increasing hip and groin pain increased such that about three years ago I found myself nearly bedridden and began having to hobble about with a cane.
I had been hit by a car and suffered compound fractures of my left leg at age 12, and as a result my gait was always a bit off center, but that had never prevented me from being very active, playing football, broom-ball, volleyball, tennis, softball, distance running, working out etc.
At age 45 I first began experiencing discomfort while exercising on an elliptical machine and it slowly got worse and worse. When I consulted a general practitioner at my HMO, he ran some x-rays, said it looked like I had some inflammation, perhaps the onset of arthritis and wanted to prescribe industrial strength ibuprofen and inactivity until I was ready to go in for hip replacements.
I wasn’t interested in replacements, or in blocking pain with drugs, but I decided to try inactivity by keeping weight off my legs as much as possible (I became a couch potato-the absolute wrong thing to do).
I planned my activities to minimize any walking, and recovering from just going to the grocery store and back became like recovering from a marathon. I just kept getting stiffer and weaker.
My inactivity contributed to a hefty (nearly three digit) weight gain over the next year as well.
When I eventually went back to the health club months later I was unable to lift my legs enough to use any machines or cycles. Just standing for more than a few minutes caused excruciating pain and fatigue, necessitating me to sit for several minutes to rest and recover. I decided that I was under-whelmed with the traditional advice I had been given and set out on my own.
Over the course of the next few years, I fasted, tried many different supplements, underwent acupuncture, prolotherapy and chiropractic. All f these therapies helped in small increments, but I was still in constant pain, weak, overweight, discouraged and frustrated. I tried to do exercises on my own but had very limited range of motion and strength.
Then I read about Pete Egoscue on the internet. His story sounded like mine. After running into a figurative wall in asking traditional allopathic doctors for help with his nagging hip injury/pain, Pete developed his own methodology to heal and retrain muscles and joints. His proclamation that “bones and joints do what muscles tell them to do” made perfect sense to me.
Billed as "the world leader in non-medical pain relief" the Egoscue Method sounded like just what I needed- someone to help me re-educate my muscles to tell my bones and joints what to do.
That’s how I found Deb on the Internet. Not just an approved Posture Alignment Therapist, she also seemed very knowledgeable about Pilates and other exercise/therapy methods. She listens carefully, and is very straightforward.
I had deteriorated so much and I had such stiffness and weakness that I was not looking at any magic bullet solution, it would take months to correct, but she could help. I had an aggressive hip flexor disparity coupled with outwardly rotated thighs (femurs) which was only two of several other musculo-skeletal abnormalities. My posture was so out of alignment and I was in such pain and feeling so bad that she didn’t take before photos, as she didn’t want them to discourage me!
Three months later, after meeting twice a month and prescribing on average 45 minutes to an hour of daily exercise and stretching done at home, Deb has indeed helped me. My gait, while not quite normal, is getting very close. I’ve lost considerable weight. My strength and flexibility are greatly improved, and my chronic pain is gone-replaced with the normal amount of post exercise/stretching soreness that goes away as my conditioning improves and we move on to more advanced exercises. I can actually stand and move about in the kitchen long enough to prepare meals for the first time in years. My realistic and attainable goal now is to exhibit a normalized gait, and to become cane-free within two more months and to be normally active again in three to four months.
Three months ago I would have thought that sounded impossible-but now it’s an ironclad expectation. Deb is very positive and supportive while also being direct and realistic.
If we have taken months or years to get to a certain injured state-it cannot be healed overnight, but if it can be healed, I believe that Deb is the person to show you the way. She’s definitely been a blessing to me. The most impressive factor is that after listening carefully and conducting an initial analysis/diagnosis, she adjusts her prescription of posture alignment exercises/stretching therapy to the individual. No computer program spits out a cookie cutter menu, each exercise is customized to my unique situation/requirements, and adjusted accordingly as I continue to improve and heal..
To me that makes the difference.
~ Tom K.
I have worked with Deb over the course of two summers, 2006 and 2009 and have gone from pretty debilitating lower back pain to virtually pain free.
I was referred to Deb when I was only 23 years old after years of back pain due to a high school gymnastics injury and a life of weak abdominals and generally poor posture. I was very frustrated as a former gymnast and runner as I feared any physical activity as the result was so often pain and back spasms.
The first summer I worked with Deb back in 2006 we did Pilates once a week, and after only 6-8 weeks my pain was virtually gone and I could feel myself standing much straighter. In fact, friends asked if I had lost weight but it was just that my posture was so much better and I stood so much taller!
Unfortunately, at that time I moved away from the Twin Cities and was no longer able to work with Deb. I searched and searched over the course of three years for a pilates/yoga instructor to ‘replace’ her and was consistently disappointed. Deb has more training, and more innate understanding of body mechanics, than any other Pilates instructor that I have met.
Luckily, I spent the summer of 2009 in Minneapolis and was once again able to work with Deb.
This time I went 1-2 times per week as I knew I had such a limited amount of time with her. Despite her vast knowledge of Pilates years before, the training in Egoscue that she received in the interim really advanced our work together. Not only were the 10 weeks with Deb able to get me ‘back on track’ but I now feel like I have many of the tools and exercises to usedaily and/or whenever I need them to address back pain, and other alignment issues on my own. I am now back to running a couple of times a week, can go into yoga classes with the tools to know I will get something out of it and not hurt myself, and even recently learned how to snowboard. None of these things were possible in the few years before I worked with Deb.
Despite my progress, I would still choose to work with Deb weekly if I lived in the Twin Cities. I am now committed to striving for better (I don’t dare say perfect) body alignmentand I know my progression with Deb would be so much faster and more fulfilling!
Thank you Deb!!
~ Johanna L., San Francisco, CA
I want to make a recommendation to all of you locals who want to do something big in your life...
At 65, I was a little fearful of being full time Granny Nanny to the California grandkids. After being rear-ended 2 times and been diagnosed with fibromyalgia, I settled into a life of pain and mild disability.
I went to Deb Preachuk who teaches Pilates and posture alignment therapy in the Egoscue Method.
ONE CAN SUFFER FROM A LACK OF TEACHING...and that was me!
Deb taught me that you can change just about anything and with her impartation of knowledge and my hard work, life could change. Deb is also very sensitive, caring and extremely talented at what she does. If you want a new lease on life make your appointment NOW!
I am almost fully pain-free and I can even sit cross legged on the floor now! Life is so full of possibilities and we rob ourselves by settling for less than the best. Not Me! I will change and get better and better.
~ Nancy P., Farmington, MN
As a fellow Posture Alignment Specialist, I have learned to have the highest regard for my colleague, Deb Preachuk.
During a telephone conversation one day, she suggested a short menu to get a better femur position. Her logic made such sense that I followed her line of thinking. After two passes, I sensed a tiny shift in my right thigh area and just kept doing the six excises for a few weeks.
Then I did a two-hour tower experience and realized the next morning that the stress in the groin, hip flexor and lateral hip area had almost entirely disappeared. Following her menu idea clearly provided my next step in preparing the muscles to move the femur into an even better position than I had ever achieved. I am so grateful for her intuitive and studied knowledge.
She is a healer and I have been touched by her gift.
~ Barbara Baker, McKinney, Texas
As an athletic person and a fitness instructor, you can imagine my disappointment in having the kind of low back pain I was experiencing just a year ago. After bearing 3 children I decided I better seek some therapy for myself.
I contacted Deb and began my Egoscue posture alignment therapy. My initial consultation revealed my alignment was much worse than I expected. One side of my pelvis tilting posterior, and the other side tilting anterior, my midsection was a twisted mess.
I visited Deb just once a week and did my prescription of exercises every day on my own. Every week I could feel some improvement, but my third and forth weeks were the most memorable. I went from unbearable pain to PAIN FREE. I have continued my practice with Deb for almost a year now, incorporating Pilates but keeping the corrective exercise focus.
I never would have believed my recovery could have been this easy. It has made me a stronger person, mentally and physically and I no longer have to modify the movement in my everyday life. Kudos to Deb and all her help. In my opinion she is a miracle worker and I tell everyone I know who deals with back pain that they don't know what they are missingby not visiting her.
Thank You, Deb!!!
~ Chris W., Eagan, MN
I am a 53-year old woman and I began seeing Deb 9 months ago for private sessions.
I have an athletic background as a gymnast, followed by running, group exercise classes, and weight training until age 45 or so. Increasing pain in my right hip and a bone scan that showed I had a minor scoliosis encouraged me to switch focus to Pilates, yoga, and walking. Over time, my hip and overall posture improved but I decided to try the Egoscue work with a trainer in South Minneapolis to see if I could keep progressing.
I met with her about once a month for a year, doing the prescribed exercises on my own. Again, I was gaining more insight into my body and moving with more ease. Then my trainer moved to Japan.
A while later I went online and found Deb's websites.
I was so impressed, but a little dismayed that she was located in Lakeville, as I live in Fridley, a 45-minute drive at least. My intuition told me it would be worth it, and it was so right! I was discouraged when she took pictures of my alignment - I still looked like a banana from the side, just like the ones my first trainer had taken of me. I had been aware of not letting my shoulders round forward, but had accomplished this pushing my hips and ribs forward of the plumb line.
I met with Deb once a week, and it was apparent that I had been unable to get the full potential benefits from my prior exercises as they exceeded my ability to execute well. I was pretty strong and tight in my compensations, with gravity and time making them more and more entrenched. She used her extensive technical training combined with intuition when creating my program. I am continually moved by how she watches and listens to me. She has a plan for the session when I walk in her door, but will often toss it out when she sees my body not getting the desired results and figures out a different angle/approach on the spot.
The next day she e-mails my new program with pictures and detailed explanations of the exercises and their purposes. I see she has thought about the session and often adds more revisions that she feels would be of benefit. It is fun to see changes and have "aha!" moments as I do the work on my own. While it takes discipline to keep at it, I can do it at my convenience in my own home, which helps greatly with the consistency and repetition that is essential to making deep, neurological changes.
The value of the exercises is that they are deceptively simple movements. There are guidelines that you can feel whether or not you are actually carrying through on - for example, standing against a wall with your heels, buttocks, upper back, and head against the wall. I can feel as I do an arm exercise that I'm pulling away from the w all, and adjust my approach to correct that impulse. Don't laugh, but just standing against the wall and tightening my buttocks takes all my concentration, but now I can feel I'm using those muscles as I walk. The program includes a balanced variety of positions and movements.
My latest side-view picture shows a more erect posture, objective proof Deb uses to check our work. Practicing diaphragmatic breathing is a keystone of this training and is a big help in sharpening one's focus and adds a meditative aspect to this practice that I appreciate. This is truly a mind-body-spirit program enhanced by a gifted guide and teacher.
In my view, other exercise methods may be more well-known and popular, but don't address the alignment issues as effectively, and this is the key to functional movement and less stress. It frees your energy to live a kinder and gentler life. Whether you are in pain now or seeking to prevent pain down the road, it is never too early or late to start training with Deb Preachuk. You will look back at it as the best investment in yourself you have ever made!
~ Renee M.
I discovered The Egoscue Method through a friend in Los Angeles and, as I watched him heal his back through the realigning movements rather than accept major surgery, I decided I wanted the experience for myself.
I didn’t have anything ‘wrong’ with me, but I was convinced Egoscue offered me the opportunity to take care of myself in a most fundamental way. It was a preventive choice.
We moved to Saint Paul soon after I discovered Egoscue and I wondered if I would ever find someone as wonderful as the therapist I had witnessed.
In Deb, I found someone even better.
I’m thrilled with her gentle, encouraging, practical guidance. She is stunning in her capacity to describe the moves and make them personal. She is beautifully intuitive, well-trained, and experienced. I am convinced I’ve found the very best facilitator in this healing, empowering therapy.
And, within days of my starting my routines, my husband noticed the difference, not only in my movements, but how relaxed I had become. He is now as crazy, happily enthused as I am about this process that allows us to feel flexible, comfortable, and re-connected to our bodies.
Deb has been our guide and cheerleader. Our time with her was as much fun as it was challenging. In fact, we loved our experience so much, we have asked her to continue working with us… even though we have recently relocated back to the west coast. And Deb, in her open, delightful way has agreed.
If I could give my friends, family, and children any gift in the world, I would give them some sessions with Deb. In her spirit, enthusiasm, and expertise, she would change their world.
~ Jeanne M., Los Angeles, CA
I can't say enough good things about Deb and the Egoscue Method of Posture Alignment Therapy.
If you are struggling with pain and are at the end of your rope like I was, HAVE HOPE, because you can and will get better.
After years of struggling with pain from repetitive sports injuries and a car accident, I am feeling better than I have ever felt. I am pain free and doing activities that doctors told me I should never do.
Deb is a wonderful therapist and I assure you she will take you through the process with ease. Posture Alignment Therapy with Deb has transformed my body and has given me the ability to live my life to fullest PAIN FREE!"
~ Anne W., Eagan, MN
I just wanted to say thank you for all you have done for me over the past years. Yesterday was an amazing session! When I arrived, it was with a swollen knee, a right foot that I couldn't place flat on the floor when I walked and a right leg that felt as if it would crumble if I placed my full weight upon it. As always, you were calm and confident that we would be able to make everything alright. So down on the floor I went into static back, followed by supine groin with towels and other corrective exercises. By the time the hour was over, the swelling in the knee was practically gone, my foot was back on the floor and the weakness in the leg had left! This morning there is no more swollen knee and I went down the stairs with a skip in my step without holding on to the railing for support.
I came to you over three years ago with a bad back that had plagued me for years. I had seen scores of doctors and therapists with little success. I will never forget our first session when you asked me to describe the exercises that had been given to me to help strengthen my back. As I described what I was doing, you asked me something that I had never been asked before: "When I did the stretches where did I feel the stretch?" The answer was "I never felt a stretch." You explained to me that you didn't think it was a back problem but a posture problem. I was game to try anything, because nothing so far had worked, and so we started. It hasn't always been easy and there have been times I would have like to have given up, but you have always been so positive and supportive. What I can do now may seem insignificant to others but is miraculous to me. I can lie down on the floor with straight legs without pain, I can dig and plant in the garden pain free, I can feel my shoulder blades actually move and now I am never the one in a group who complains about my back hurting when traveling or shopping with friends and family. I haven't had to see a doctor for back pain since I started with you and that means I haven't had to take any medication for pain!
I am looking forward to continuing our work together because I know that I will be acquiring skills that will serve my well for the rest of my life.
~ Karen B, Apple Valley, MN
I first met Deb in January of 2008 when she taught a 30 minute intro to Pilates class at Life Time Fitness. During the session Deb mentioned that if your neck hurt while performing the moves you were not doing them correctly. Since my neck has very problematic over the years I talked to Deb after class and she told me about the Pilates/Posture work she does. I checked out her web-site and decided the private work was just not really affordable.
I had problems with aches and pains in my right arm for several years. In the spring of 2007 I realized that there was a bone protruding in my right elbow. I saw my family practitioner who ordered an X-ray to make sure there were no breaks. I was told there was a lot of arthritis in the joint and was sent to rehab. In rehab I was essentially told there was nothing that could be done.
By April of 2008 my right elbow was causing me considerable pain. I saw my family practitioner again who sent me to an orthopedist. The orthopedist had me see a neurologist for some testing. When I returned to the orthopedist he told me I needed surgery on my elbow as nerves were pinched and that I had carpel tunnel which would also need surgery. He said he would try a minor surgery on the elbow that would relieve the pain but that it might not work and I might need more extensive surgery. I can not tell you how disturbing this was for me. I'm a consultant and would not be able to work during the recovery. Additionally, my hobbies are quilting and knitting. What if something went wrong?
The surgery was scheduled for June 6th, 2008. The evening of June 1st, I went to a Yoga/Pilates Fusion class at Lifetime that I had never tried before. Deb was teaching the class. In her introduction Deb mentioned the posture work she does and that she works with women who have had surgery for breast cancer to get them fully functioning again.
In 1976 I had a lump removed in my right breast. This is back when they used the ice-cream scoop method of lump removal. My sister, an occupational therapist, is trained in Myofascial Release and when she has worked on the area between my right breast and right shoulder has commented on how much scare tissue there is. During the class I started putting two and two together. After class I told Deb about the biopsy and the impending elbow surgery, Deb suggested I get the book Pain Free by Pete Egoscue and said to make sure to read the first three chapters. I explained that my surgery was scheduled for the coming Friday. Deb said to do want I needed to do but suggested I get the book and said to make sure to read the first three chapters.
I purchased the book the next day, read the first two chapters, cancelled the surgery and made an appointment with Deb. When I arrived for my appointment Deb told me that today we would get me out of pain. When I left that day my elbow, and I realized, shoulder pain were 90% gone. I've continued to see Deb not only is my shoulder and elbow pain gone but I now have no low back pain due to the work we've done in my hip and pelvis area. We are currently working to eliminate my knock knees and strengthen and my ankles which have been weak most of my life. After each time I see Deb she e-mails a set of exercises to me and I work on them at my leisure.
I truly feel like a new woman and would strongly recommend that anyone having joint problems give her work a try. I feel blessed to have met her and benefit from her work. I actually carry her cards about and pass them out to friends who are having problems.
~ Susan U, Eagan, MN
I have a long history of osteoarthritis. The first symptoms appeared in the feet, but seemed to show up in other joints, lower back discs, shoulders, hips, and knees. I would often comment how bent out of shape I felt. I experienced sensations like my femurs were being bent and twisted almost to the point like the bones would snap with the pressure. I began to favor one side of my body and developed a limp, and gradually lost a great deal of strength in my left side. The pain slowly became a daily ordeal and finally in 1999 at the 49 years of age I had a complete hip replacement.
The pain seemed to be dealt with but I slowly began to favor the right knee and developed hammer toes on the right foot. My knee became stiff to move and pain settled into that joint. I had a knee surgery in 2001 and again in 2004. I was unable to stand or walk for any length of time and the only way I could control the pain was to do as little as possible. In February 2007 while trying to start exercising I experienced a herniated discs in my lower back. Once again I was completely riddled with pain in my back, sciatic, hip joint groin, and legs. Moving even in bed was almost more than I could bear.
By May 2007 after many physiotherapy treatments the pain was finally under control when I experience a spontaneous left hip dislocation. Fortunately the surgical team opted for a closed hip reduction. A nerve in my lower back was affected and I had spontaneous episodes of falling when I lost feeling in my legs. This would happen when I least expected it and was fearful of walking, going up and down stairs and even of being left alone.
In September 2007 I began my first Egoscue exercises with Deb. She gave me a few basic ones to start and then in October of 2007 Deb showed me a few exercises designed for a complete postural alignment. December of 2007 Deb once again updated my exercise routine.
I am now totally pain free! I have increased my mobility, and can now walk for about 30 minutes at a time, and am able to do aquatic exercises 3 times a week as well. The most amazing thing is to feel my body is aligned as I am walking.
The doctor I have been seeing regarding the herniated discs is satisfied with my recovery. I tried to bring up the issue of postural alignment and how this had helped in my recovery he had no comments. I know my recovery had very little to do with medication, physiotherapy,or rest that produced such an amazing improvement to my health. I am fully convinced the Egoscue exercise program has produced structural alignment for my body. I no longer fear hip dislocation, or the thought of using the cane, walker or wheel chair. Whenever I begin to feel any twinges in my joints I simply do the static back and this seems to break the impending muscle spasms I have been plagued with for so many years.
My many thanks to you Deb, your insight and God given talents to help someone like me has enabled me to enjoy my retirement years. You have seen me struggle for so many years. Thank you for being patient and lovingly persistent in your pursuit to bring healing to my body.
~ Heather G. Winnipeg, Manitoba
Deb has been a positive and patient guide for me on my journey as a pilates and posture alignment student. Her knowledge and skills as a teacher have been invaluable for me.
~ Karen O. Palm Springs, CA
It is difficult to say how much Deb has helped me. A lot of doctors look at me disbelievingly when I tell them my scoliosis has all but disappeared because of Pilates. When I was little, I had to wear corrective shoes. Even as a two-year old I was abnormally clumsy. My mom enrolled me in gymnastics and dance to try and help me gain a sense of balance, but it didn't really help. I almost died laughing watching an old gymnastics video--- I did everything blatantly wrong, then would run over to my mom wanting a hug because I thought I did it so well. This lack of awareness carried me all the way through high school. Starting in the third grade, I landed in the hospital every year for some kind of freak injury. The doctors just said I was unlucky. On a supposedly unrelated topic, every year at my well check I was told that I had scoliosis, and that if it got bad enough all they could do was put me in a brace. Every year my mom asked if there was something else they could do, and every year I got a few degrees closer to that brace.
My freshman year of high school, the year I was 2 degrees away from that brace, my freak accident of the year would spin me on a life-changing journey. To make a long story short, a several hundred pound lunch table fell on my foot, I was in a cast for 3 months and oncrutches, and I tried every kind of therapy under the sun (everything from physical therapy to acupuncture having electric currents put through my leg). Nothing worked, and as a dancer I was infuriated--- I was out for the entire year. When my ordeal was close to over (my foot still hurt but I had quit therapy), a friend and I decided to try pilates. She just wanted to try it, and I wanted to get back in shape for the next dance season. Not only had I lost a whole year of intense training, my back hurt more than ever and I was going to a chiropractor twice a week. Not to mention I walked like Igore (I didn't believe my mom when she was always driving me crazy to walk normally). We took mat lessons with Deb, and after two lessons she pulled me aside and said, “Meghan, I usually don't do this, but you really need to do private lessons with me". My mom and I discussed it and decided to give it a try.
After only two lessons, Deb had figured out what countless doctors had failed to see--- my scoliosis was muscular, not skeletal. It was due to a muscle imbalance I had, my right side was much tighter than my left, and over time that had led my back to twist itself into two 13 degree curves. Deb explained that common symptoms of muscular scoliosis include clumsiness and--- she didn't even have to finish, my mom and I knew she was right. I continued my lessons with Deb, and my sophomore year my "falling down the stairs tally" (yes, my friends and I actually counted) dropped to 11… all the way from 57 the previous year. My spine began to straighten almost right away. After four months, Deb had me roll down to show my mom the progress I had made, and my mom started crying in the middle of Deb's kitchen. About a year after I started lessons, I got a back x-ray and saw that my curve had dropped from two 13 degree curves to one 4 degree curve. 4 degrees. I couldn't believe it, nor could the doctors.
By then it was my junior year, and I went out on a huge, huge limb. I wore high heels for the first time to homecoming. The last time I tried on heels it was because my mom's feet were getting cut so I switched shoes with her. The "heels" were very chunky and about 1.5" high. I took two steps and fell face flat on the pavement. At homecoming I only tripped a couple of times… my friends even noticed. Not only could I wear heels now, but my dance coaches actually pulled me aside and said they had never seen so much improvement in anyone so quickly. They asked what happened and I told them exactly what--- Deb. I wore heels to my Junior prom that year, and by the end of the year my "falling down the stairs tally" was (drumroll please) ZERO! I didn't fall once, not even in heels.
It really is amazing what a straight back can do for you. If it wasn't for Deb, I think I would have ended up going to college this year in a wheelchair. I can't believe how Deb was able to figure things out, it was like she had a sixth sense and knew exactly how to fix me. She not only fixed my back, but my hyper-mobility (I had dislocating shoulders and hips) has all but disappeared. I used to not even notice when my shoulders dislocated because it happened so often. I would reach out to grab something and out flew the shoulder. Now, it has happened maybe once or twice this year.
I can't thank Deb enough. I am so much healthier because of her. My mom doesn't have to rub my back every night, and I have been off painkillers for a very long time. I haven't been to the hospital since my junior year, and that wasn't even because of a freak injury. I can walk without wondering which piece of nothing I will trip on now, and I know it sounds silly, but I have been a lot more social since I have gained so much confidence in myself. I walked all over New York City in heels, and even when my heel got caught in a hole I didn't fall. I can wear flip-flops in the summer instead of having to wear tennis shoes for the support. I have a normal life now, and I owe a lot of it to Deb.
PS~ The one thing I will always remember about my graduation is not the speeches or getting handed my diploma. It is that I wore heels and walked across that stage without the thought of falling even crossing my mind. Not only that but I raced up the slippery plastic stands to give my mom a hug--- again without even worrying about falling. Those are the silly little things that can really change someone's life.
~ Meghan W. Austin, TX
When I started working with Deb nearly a year ago, I was very frustrated. My body was struggling with a nasty little trifecta:
- joint pain due to Crohn's Disease
- muscle and connective tissue pain due to fibromyalgia
- the residual nagging injuries and alignment problems resulting from years of competitive gymnastics
In most part due to daily fibromyalgia pain, I hadn't exercised in seven years. I had no muscle tone left. My clothes didn't fit. I was tired, sore, and unhappy with what I saw when I looked in the mirror. It was demoralizing remembering what by body USED to be capable of, and realizing just how deteriorated that body had become.
I reached a point in time where my fibromyalgia pain decreased a bit. I realized this was a window of opportunity to take control, to start to find a solution. My childhood ballet instructor raved about what Pilates did for her body after a knee injury. I researched local Pilates instructors, visited a few studios, and ultimately chose Deb at Pilates Integration. I knew I needed personalized instruction. I knew I needed someone with rehab experience and extensive anatomical knowledge who was willing to adapt exercises to my needs and progress. I knew her experience with competitive athletes and their unique motivational and body issues would be beneficial to me, especially at the beginning when progress would be slow. Deb and I spent most of my first session talking - about my health history, athletic experiences and my expectations - and then set reasonable yet challenging short-term goals in context with my body's reality.
In the ten months Deb and I have been working together, amazing things have happened. I require less daily prescription pain medication to manage my fibromyalgia. My energy level is higher, and much more predictable. We are slowly correcting alignment problems caused by decades of pounding and hyper-flexibility, especially in my arches, ankles and knees. I'm toning up. And though weight loss was not my primary goal, I have lost 15 pounds and am wearing (kinda)-skinny jeans. ;-)
I'm not a competitive athlete anymore, and never will be. I'm on the backside of 40, and pain remains with me every day. But I have found a form of exercise that I am already somewhat competent at, but will continue to challenge me. And a trainer who knows just how hard to push me. It is so satisfying to know I have improved my body's condition, control and performance through my own hard work.
As someone who has lived much of the last decade limited by my body's deficiencies, I can't express how great that feels. And I don't take it for granted.
~ Tammy H.
Deb is a wonderful instructor. She has taught me proper techniques of poses that I had been doing incorrectly prior to taking her class. She is encouraging but tough. You leave her class feeling that you have really accomplished something. I have recommended her to so many people.
I can't say enough good things about Deb.
~ Jackie U.
Deb P's Fluid Strength is the best class, hands down! She is so energetic and fun and class is so integrated that I feel like I'm getting a really complete workout, yoga, strength, cardio, stretching and pilates all rolled into sixty minutes. By the end, I feel energized and the next day, I'm feeling it everywhere!
~ Melissa L.
My high school daughter Meghan is a dancer who has always been involved in many competitive sports despite having scoliosis. We had her condition closely monitored by her pediatricians and were told the only intervention for it would be a back brace if the curvature reached 19 degrees. Annual X-rays showed the curvature in her back stopped at 13 degrees and she had visibly turned and sloped shoulders by the time she was done growing.
Meghan had a serious foot injury for which we had seen several top specialists who tried every procedure, treatment and therapy they knew of and each then referred her to someone else to try to resolve her constant chronic pain. We were basically told after a year-and-a-half she would have to live with it and take medication to control the pain. For the first time in our lives we turned to "alternative" therapies.
She had significant reduction in the pain in her foot through chiropractors with acupuncture, chiropractic treatment, and myofacial release massage. She still had pain aggravated by bones which slipped out of place in her back and foot, and was having toreceive chiropractic adjustments every couple of weeks.
We came to Pilates Integration, because we had heard Pilates was a great way for dancers to support their bodies, and become stronger, less injury prone athletes. Since Meghan was determined to dance despite it aggravating her condition, we wanted to do whatever we could to help her do this in the most healthy way possible. We decided to give Pilates a try.
After a couple of sessions with Deb she told us she was not positive, but after evaluating Meghan she felt she could help her straighten her back. She asked if Meghan's scoliosis was muscular or skeletal. I replied I had never heard of different kinds, I was told by her doctors that scoliosis was growth related and would stabilize when Meghan stopped growing. Deb explained she thought Meghan had a condition called hypermobility which could cause muscular scoliosis. I really was unsure of what to think, but my daughter was coming away from her sessions with Deb feeling great and with a big smile. It was not why we started Pilates, but I thought it wouldn't hurt to try...
I cannot say enough about how Deb has used her remarkable understanding of how the body works and Pilates to change my child's life. She has gone from having constant back pain from scoliosis to having a healthy straight back. She has gone from going to the chiropractor every two weeks to adjust her back and foot, to not going at all in almost a year. I cried when Deb had Meghan demonstrate her new ability to level off her shoulders after just three weeks of helping her to train through the arduous intricate process of learning how to use and sequence the correct muscles to support her back, foot and the rest of her body.
We had Meghan's back X-rayed after a Summer of Pilates and now she has only a 4 degree curve in her back, which does not fall in the range of a scoliosis diagnosis!
Thanks to Deb and Pilates my daughter has a healthy pain free body, something we never dreamed possible. Now if I give my daughter a back rub before she goes to bed it's just for fun and relaxation, not to help her through pain so she can fall asleep. What a strange chain of events led us to this blessing of a pain free body, something which many take for granted. Words simply cannot express the gratitude we feel for Debs caring support and guidance.
~ Jeannie W.
I'm a 76 year old Grandmother who firmly believes in the benefits of Pilates.
I took Pilates twice a week for several months prior to having total knee replacement surgery. Therapists told me that my recovery was quick because of the strengthening of the muscle surrounding the knee that I did in Pilates. I'm now back at it and loving it.
~ Sylvia K., Burnsville, MN
STOTT Pilates has taught me that practice and patience do make perfect. I have done various forms of exercise my whole life, but have never really stuck with any of them because of discouragement from my immediate lack of skill and lack of self-confidence. I had always assumed that people who were good at an exercise or sport (e.g., tennis, swimming, golf, etc) were just naturally talented, i.e., they were immediately good when they began the sport. Because of this belief, and because I have never been perfect when I began a new exercise, I would always drop the exercise after a few attempts.
I began doing STOTT Pilates about 1.5 years ago. I was very discouraged in the beginning because I could not immediately do all of the moves. I was very fortunate to begin my lessons with a STOTT trained Pilates instructor named Deb Preachuk. Deb was a very patient instructor and encouraged my progress and was able to manage my discouragement. With Deb's instruction, I have continued with Pilates for over 1.5 years. Through the 1.5 years, I have progressed from being barely able to do ab prep, to being able to do some of more advanced moves. Beyond the sense of accomplishment I have achieved from Pilates, I have learned that practice does make perfect. I stuck with Pilates despite my discouragement, and to my amazement I have seen improvements every week. I learned that it does take time and effort to move from the beginning moves to the advanced moves.
I have carried this insight into other areas of my life. I recently started a new job and was able to fall back on what I learned in Pilates to help me through the job. I remembered that I felt uncoordinated and awkward when I learned new Pilates moves, but as I practiced the moves, they became natural and more refined. With the insight from Pilates, I was able to reframe how I looked at my new job and accept that I would be uncomfortable with my new responsibilities, but with practice, the new responsibilities would become natural and more refined.
Pilates has taught me to accept that I am a beginner when I attempt anything new but with practice, I can become skilled. It has allowed me to try new things and accept the awkwardness and discomfort that comes with anything new.
~Ann C., Denver, CO