Primal Reflex Release Technique Advanced Level Practitioner, Associative Awareness Technique Practitioner, Tension/Trauma Releasing Exercises Practitioner, Reiki Master.
Rick grew up in St. Paul, Minnesota and headed off to the Northwest for college, earning his BA in Physical Geography from Western Washington University in 1976. An avid skier and member of the soccer and tennis teams in high school, Rick expanded his fitness interests to the mountains while in college, gaining skills as a mountaineer and backcountry skier. He had his first taste of medicine during that time getting his EMT certification to use for wilderness medicine.
After graduation, Rick spent some time with the Forest Service and working retail at a mountaineering store before settling down in Leavenworth, Washington managing a fruit orchard. During the winters, Rick pursued cross-country ski teaching becoming a fully certified Nordic Instructor and coaching a group of juniors with the Bavarian Nordic Club. He trained and raced in Nordic skiing extensively himself. It was during this time that Rick became more interested in sports injuries, healing, health, and fitness.
To further pursue that interest, he went back to school in 1984 earning both his Athletic Training Certification and Physical Therapy degree from the University of Puget Sound in 1988. After graduation, he moved to Durango, CO to work for Mercy Medical Center providing PT services and acting as head Athletic Trainer at Durango High School. He worked there until 2001, when he moved his practice to the Durango Sports Club. In 2010 he started Sunrise Physical Therapy, LLC so that he could spend more quality time with his patients than was possible in the traditional PT setting.
In the mid 90’s, Rick had 4 knee surgeries and had to give up some of his recreational pursuits. Then in 1999 he suffered a more serious setback with an episode of viral encephalitis and chronic fatigue syndrome. It was while recovering from this that Rick realized that exercise was not the cure all to everything, and that there had to be other ways to balance and heal the body. He pursued Reiki, becoming an Ursa Reiki master in 2000, and a Karuna Reiki master in 2001. In 2001 he studied Tai Chi and got certified as a Tai Chi for Arthritis instructor. He also studied Pranic Healing during that time. These tools brought new skills and perspectives of the healing arts to Rick, among other things stressing the importance of the body’s energy flow, stress reduction, body balance, and relaxation to healing and health.
In 2002 he became certified as a Sole Support custom orthotic provider. Although he had been doing custom foot orthotics for 17 years, the dramatic improvement of control with the Sole Supports orthotics reinforced the importance of proper biomechanical function to pain free living and decreasing stress to the body.
Rick has come to believe that the body is designed to move freely, efficiently, and pain free; and that given a proper environment, it can. One should not have to do hours of stretching and exercise to balance the body. Like a well-tuned car, if properly tuned up, it should just work. Many people don’t have this balance in their body, however, due to holding patterns, past injury, poor alignment, or an imbalance in their autonomic nervous system and must constantly struggle to get by.
The missing link to this philosophy came in 2008 when Rick was introduced to PRRT (Primal Reflex Release Technique), a new method of treating pain and balancing the body using the nervous system. He has pursued this vigorously for the past 4 years, becoming 1 of only 200 in the world to be trained at the highest advanced level in the spring of 2010. This was one of the keys to allowing the musculoskeletal system to do what it was designed to do. Since incorporating PRRT into his practice, Rick has been able to help clients “tune up and balance” their bodies very quickly, and with much less stress, time, and cost to the client. In many cases, the changes to the client and their pain level/function are almost magical.
More recently, Rick has incorporated several other unique techniques that go even deeper in resetting and rebalancing the autonomic nervous system. Associative Awareness Technique reboots the autonomic nervous system to help balance the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems. Tension Releasing Exercises elicit neurogenic tremors to release the bodies tension and the resultant physical and emotional blocks that can be causing tension, anxiety, PTSD, and numerous other symptoms associated with holding patterns. These techniques were the frosting on the cake of all Rick has learned in his years of practice and life experiences. To be able to address the body from the ground up, and inside out, and see the dramatic results is quite an experience, and something that Rick’s whole life seems to have been directed towards.
Rick’s unique background as a competitive athlete, his multiple surgeries, and a serious medical problem give him a perspective on health and healing that few have. Combining this with his educational background and certifications provides knowledge and skills that are unmatched in the area. Rick’s clinical experience ranges from treating professional athletes, weekend warriors, 102 year olds, gardeners, walkers, trauma and PTSD sufferers and just plain old folks held back from their goals by pain and dysfunction. Rick has an active interest in education, and since graduation from PT school has acquired over 1200 hrs of continuing education in his field, as he is always looking for new and better ways to help his clients. Rick is married to his wife Lisa, who is a Registered Nurse, and has 2 children ages 23 and 27. He resides in Durango, CO.