The Blog

Keep up to date with how Performance Optimal Health is empowering our clients to live better.

Improve longevity and performance with Pilates

At Performance Optimal Health, we often recommend Pilates to our clients, as it allows them to target specific muscles and teaches them about their body more than any other form of exercise. Whether you want to decrease joint pain, play better on the courts or simply live healthier, Pilates is an excellent choice for many.

How to optimize your pickleball game

At Performance Optimal Health, we want to serve as a resource​ and share with you simple, tangible steps you can implement​ to empower you to live better and play more pickleball.

Nutrition and heart health at Performance

See how Performance Optimal Health utilizes nutrition to help keep our clients' hearts happy and healthy. From preventative care to management, the Performance team takes a whole-body approach to nutrition.

The role of nutrition in promoting heart health

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in both women and men in the United States; maintaining a heart healthy diet is key to lowering your risk. Here's a case example of a client who is looking to improve her health and body composition, and what a sample menu representing the recommended diet.

Effects of stress on cardiovascular health

In recognition of heart health month, our hosts shed light behind some of the science on how stress interacts with the cardiovascular system and provide education on stress so that you can increase your ability in managing or having more control over it.

Unlock Your Best: Performance Golf Assessments

Maximizing the weather in Florida is a must, which is why the golf community is so vibrant down south. With personalized programming and a team approach to care, you can optimize your golf performance by improving your strength and mobility, allowing you to play stronger, longer, and without pain.

How can I golf longer — and with less pain?

Golf is a sport that can be played year-round in southwest Florida, and with the average daytime temperature reaching the mid 70s, it's a perfect time to get out and play. The game offers a lifetime of enjoyment and challenge; however, as with any physical activity, golf can take a toll on the body, leading to discomfort — and even pain. Here are some key strategies to help you extend your golfing years and play the game pain free.

Break up with New Year’s Resolutions

Meet Paul Steed: an avid runner, tennis player, and horseback rider, who is looking stronger than ever. After starting with Performance as an physical therapy client for a torn abductor, he now trains with Will Manzi. As he continues to improve his strength and endurance, Paul doesn't actually believe in New Year's Resolutions — instead, he seeks to be the best form of himself year round.

The psychology behind goal setting & behavior change

The beginning of a new year is a common and motivating time to want to set new goals. One way people achieve their goals is through systematic goal setting. Sometimes, however, we may have trouble achieving the goals that we set. Here are some reasons why reaching our goals may be easier said than done, explanations for how goal setting works, and what you can do about it.

RECIPE: Zucchini frittata, a high protein start to your day — and year

Protein is one of the most important nutrients for weight loss and creating balanced meals; increasing the amount of protein you eat may help support weight loss by balancing certain hormones and helping you feel satiated longer, among other benefits. This healthy frittata is packed with protein and delicious veggies, a perfect dish to start your new year with.

Telehealth is here to stay: a client interview

Telehealth and virtual training over platforms like Zoom have proven to be more than just a temporary solution; they are here to stay. The convenience and accessibility offered by remote health services make them particularly beneficial for individuals who travel frequently. Virtual sessions eliminate geographical barriers, allowing people on the move to access personalized training or healthcare guidance seamlessly. Here's how one of our trainers works remotely with his client.

Unleashing the power of wearable technology in healthcare

Wearable technology aids in improving healthcare outcomes in various ways. What sets these apart from your standard blood pressure cuff monitors, pulse oximeter, or other devices you see in a doctor's office or other medical setting, is the fact that these are devices you can wear every day. Here's how to make the most of them.

Understanding metabolic health through key biomarkers

Metabolic health is all about having ideal levels of certain biomarkers, such as obesity, elevated triglycerides, HDL levels, insulin resistance, and blood pressure, among others. These markers are like checkpoints on the road to a healthy metabolism — here's what you need to know.

What constitutes a healthy metabolism?

The metabolism, often associated with weight management and energy levels, is the complex process of maintaining homeostasis by regulating energy balance, nutrient availability, and cellular functions necessary for survival and proper function. While genetics play a role in determining metabolic rates, there are several ways to optimize your metabolism for better overall health.

How menopause affects the metabolism

Among the many changes that occur during menopause, including hot flashes, night sweats, and changes in mood, a shift in metabolism also occurs which can lead to further issues as a direct result of the decrease in estrogen production. Here's what to expect.

A comprehensive recipe for weight loss: it’s not just about exercise

When it comes to weight loss, the two commonly discussed factors include exercise and nutrition. But can someone lose weight by changing their exercise habits, but not their nutrition? Many believe that to lose weight, it is necessary to both increase physical activity and adopt a healthy, balanced diet.

Best approaches to treat your low back pain

Low back pain is one of the most common conditions someone will experience at some point in their life. While low back pain initially may be scary, there is no reason to worry. The good news is that majority of individuals with low back pain will experience complete recovery, especially when utilizing various conservative treatment approaches.

Should you stretch before or after a workout?

Warming up effectively will increase blood flow to muscles, prime joints and tendons, and lower the risk for injury. So, let’s settle the debate: what’s the best way to accomplish this, dynamic or static stretching?

Marathon Mondays: Make it to the start healthy

In the final episode of our Marathon Monday mini-series, 5x Boston Marathon Division Winner Heather Pech joins the podcast to talk about her training process and how she keeps winning gold. She discusses what exactly makes her such a successful runner — from her nutrition to mentality, Heather breaks down everything that makes her a world record holder.

Marathon Mondays: Listen to your “foot brain”

Megan Searfoss, owner of Ridgefield and Darien Running Company, joins Britt and Brendan to dive into the rigorous running shoe fitting process that includes a 3D scanner, detailing why the brand and type of shoe matters for the wearer. The trio also discuss the latest trends in footwear, including carbon plating, as well shoe life expectancy and how to deal with companies updating your favorite pair of running shoes.

Marathon Mondays: Mental strategies to help you the finish line

Marathon Mondays: Mental strategies to help you the finish line Hosts Britt Gunsser, physical therapist and RRCA Running Coach, and Brendan Copley, personal trainer, are joined by mental performance consultant Arianna Martignetti as they dive into the realm of sports psychology, aiming to unravel the mental aspects of training and racing. They explore the often-quoted […]

Marathon Mondays: Nutrition and hydration for the long distance runner

On this episode of Marathon Mondays, hosts Britt Gunsser and Brendan Copley bring in nutritionist Ashley Jerry to discuss essential fueling strategies for long-distance runners. They cover the importance of macronutrients, hydration, and carbohydrate intake, providing practical tips to manage GI distress, optimize nutrition during taper phases, and make informed choices regarding supplements, all aimed at helping runners enhance their performance and recovery.

Marathon Mondays: Building a marathon training plan

In the introductory episode of "Marathon Mondays," Britt and Brendan dig into what you should be looking for in a thorough training program, answer frequently asked questions, and debunk common myths. They cover developing a personalized training plan, the importance of different types of runs, how to incorporate strength training, and more.

The missing link to successful rehab and return to sport

While much is understood about the importance of physical therapy when rehabilitating from an injury and returning to sport, there is less focus on the role of mental performance. Overall, psychological readiness has been undervalued and underassessed when determining if an athlete is ready to return to sport at their previous competitive level.
golfer near a hole

Mental performance: the key to unlocking your golfing potential

Golf is a sport that demands both physical and mental prowess. While the significance of physical fitness in golf is well-established, the importance of mental performance cannot be overlooked. The ability to think strategically, maintain focus, manage emotions, and handle pressure are all crucial elements that can greatly impact a golfer's performance on the course.
woman meditating with her son

Avoiding parental burnout

Parenting is a rewarding, stressful, fulfilling, and challenging endeavor. Parental stress is normal and common, but there may come a time when a parent’s stress becomes severe or long-lasting, which can affect their ability to cope; this can manifest into parental burnout. Here's what you can do about it.
confident soccer player

Mindfulness for the student athlete

Student-athletes are subjected to a fast-paced, competitive lifestyle. Balancing academic and athletic demands are a natural source of stress for young athletes; developing mindfulness skills can moderate mental clutter and help maximize academic and athletic achievement.
What you need to know about torticollis

What you need to know about torticollis

At Performance we care for patients throughout the lifespan, starting as early as infancy. One of the most common diagnoses in babies that can require physical therapy intervention is torticollis.
How Jon Rahm, a Master’s favorite, prepares his body for play

How Jon Rahm, a Master’s favorite, prepares his body for play

How Jon Rahm, a Master’s favorite, prepares his body for play The current world’s third ranked golfer and popular Master’s favorite Jon Rahm is the pinnacle of golf fitness, and the perfect example of how to best optimize the body-swing connection. Apr 3, 2023 | Larry Piretra, PT, DPT, CSCS, TPI-M2 The current world’s third […]
Your Longevity Guidebook

Your Longevity Guidebook

If you want to live the longest, healthiest life, there are certain steps that will contribute to overall longevity: proper exercise, diet, and stress management.
What is your biological age?

What is your biological age?

How old are you? This is a question you have probably been asked countless times throughout your life. But what many of us don’t think about when we ask this question, is the difference between chronological age and biological age.

What does scoliosis management look like?

What does scoliosis management look like? Scoliosis is a common diagnosis that we will see in the office and can be managed in various ways, both conservatively and surgically, if necessary. Here's how you can manage it. Jan 27, 2023 | Robert Mahlman, DPT Scoliosis is a common diagnosis that we will see in the […]
The impact stress has on diabetes

The impact stress has on diabetes

When you think about how someone should prevent or even help to treat their prediabetes or type II diabetes, you most likely would think of improving the quality of their diet as well as increasing their frequency of exercise, and you would be correct in that thinking.
Pilates exercises for healthy joints

Pilates exercises for healthy joints

In honor of Bone & Joint Health National Action Week, Pilates Instructor Rebecca Deeley shares a few exercises on the Pilates Reformer that strengthen the muscles around the joints without stressing out the joints themselves.
The dangers of chronic inflammation and what you can do about it

The dangers of chronic inflammation and what you can do about it

The dangers of chronic inflammation and what you can do about it Sep 13, 2022 | Health & Wellness Magazine While some levels of acute inflammation aid the body’s natural processes, prolonged, chronic inflammation causes a variety of health issues, including chronic disease and deterioration of body mechanics. It is incredibly important to manage things […]
Introducing the Optimal Health Assessment

Introducing the Optimal Health Assessment

Introducing the Optimal Health Assessment What once was a burgeoning physical therapy practice is now an innovative health care company with a holistic approach to health and wellbeing. We expanded our mission from the original focus on recovery to one of finding balance in all pillars of one’s health: stress, exercise, recovery and nutrition. Apr […]
Nutrition for the mind and body

Nutrition for the mind and body

The body and mind are connected in more ways than one, especially through the gut. The food we eat directly impacts our hormones, mood, and more. Here's what you need to know about how nutrition can impact not just your gut health, but your mental and emotional state as well.
Preventing and treating common knee injuries in the winter

Preventing and treating common knee injuries in the winter

Preventing and treating common knee injuries in the winter Learn about common knee injuries and what we can do before, during, and after to stay active and optimize your health during the winter. Dec 15, 2021 | Jonathon Mendola, DPT Much like the shocks in your car help soften your ride down the road, your […]
How to burn more calories during your walks

How to burn more calories during your walks

How to burn more calories during your walks Walking is a great way to burn calories, but there are ways to increase that caloric burn. Nov 1, 2021 | Performance Optimal Health (CNN)-It’s no secret that walking is good for you. Many of us are trying to get in those recommended 10,000 steps a day […]
How an Oura ring prevented me from spreading COVID-19

What is Long COVID?

As time passes, we learning more about the effects of Long COVID, a syndrome that affects a portion of people who contract COVID-19. Here's what we know so far.
Are smoothies good for you?

Are smoothies good for you?

Smoothies are versatile, fill of veggies, fruits, yogurt, milk and more. But are you taking in more calories than you think you are?
What is “clean meat?” (with Paul Shapiro)

What is “clean meat?” (with Paul Shapiro)

Be it eating less meat, cleaner meat, or plant-based meat, we can still get the nutrients we need — and more — if we take a step back from the practices that are harmful to animals, humans and the climate.
The four best running belts

The four best running belts

With Autumn in reach, it's time to stop using treadmills and take advantage of the cooler weather and take your runs outside. Here are the four best belts to make sure you can still have your essentials on your runs.
Recovery spotlight: massage

Recovery spotlight: massage

While there are various methods of recovery, few have been around as long as massage. Here's the quick rundown on everything you need to know about the wonders of massage.
Progress does not stop with age: how to train for life

Progress does not stop with age: how to train for life

Progress does not stop with age: how to train for life Age-related declines in physical fitness and health are not a sure thing — here's how you can subvert expectations and stay fit as you grow older. Jun 1, 2021Mathew Welch, ATC, CSCS May 26, 2023 | Elisa LaBelle, PT, MSPT “Oh yeah? Well, just […]
Doing HIIT workouts? Know your limits

Doing HIIT workouts? Know your limits

Have you noticed that your energy or power production is decreasing, but you haven't changed your exercise routine? You might be overdoing high-intensity interval training (HIIT).
Finding her way in the world of physical therapy

Finding her way in the world of physical therapy

I wish I had a positive story of why I became a physical therapist – an injury I overcame, a family member who inspired me, a teacher who really pushed me, but my story is a little more negative (but it turned positive in the end!).
The impact of stress on women

The impact of stress on women

Women often report feeling stressed more than men, which affects their health. To learn more about how stress impacts women, explore the Office of Women's Health resources.
Managing stress through yoga

Managing stress through yoga

Stress is a fact of life. It’s never going to go away, not fully. We are inclined as humans to look for and create problems and stress.
Finding the right balance

Finding the right balance

I’ve always been a mover, so it’s no surprise I ended up a physical therapist. What could be better than helping people get back to moving the way that matters most to them?
Through motherhood, she found a second career

Through motherhood, she found a second career

I started my career in the corporate world, but after twelve years, I left my job to be a full-time mom. It was during this time that I saw how food could shape my children’s health and development, and decided it would be the focus of my career going forward.
Achieving longevity like Tom Brady

Achieving longevity like Tom Brady

From nutrition to sleep habits to career pressure, Tom Brady has been able to perform at such an elite level for over 21 years due to his lifestyle. Listen to our podcast to find out how to use his approach this upcoming season.

A force to be reckoned with

Trish Kirsch discusses how Performance helped her daughter, Saylor, recover after an injury; Though doctors were unable to help at first, they were finally able to discover the source of her Saylor's injuries and put her on the path to recovery.
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The importance of a good night’s sleep

No matter how much we take care of our bodies while we are awake, sleeping poorly can erase many of those gains. In order to be successful, happy and healthy, we must pay attention to the quality of the sleep we are getting.