My name is Carolyn Yates. I pursued a career in physical therapy because I thoroughly enjoy helping other people. I consider myself a natural caregiver and physical therapy was an easy decision. From caring for my friends during injuries or illness, to leading various sport teams as a captain or coach to taking care of young children, I always found myself gravitating towards helping others. I loved the idea of having a substantial amount of time with patients each week as opposed to the shorter amount of time that doctors and nurses get. I realized half of the draw to PT for me was that I would get to talk to my patients and make significant relationships and make significant impacts on people’s lives. I love getting to know my patients.
Personally, I am a very active person and think that trait also had an impact on my career path to physical therapy (PT). I’ve always been a passionate runner and nature lover. Getting to help other people reach their goals of being able to get back to their sport/activity of choice was a huge draw. Also, being able to relate with my patients about their trials and tribulations with being injured and desire to return to their activity/sport was a draw for me. Overall, I knew I wanted to be in a helping profession. I found PT through exploration of the helping medical fields and I am so happy I did. I truly feel blessed to have the job I do.
I have been practicing women’s health PT for about four years now. If you had told me in PT school that I would be traveling down this path, I would have looked at you like you were crazy. I got into the niche because a previous boss of mine asked me to take some courses in it. I think I grew up a lot in the year after physical therapy school and when he asked me to do pelvic floor work I didn’t even flinch at the idea. I figured learning a new skill that could make me a more valuable clinician and reach new cohorts of people was the only way forward. Fast forward three years and now I have my own small PT business in New York City (soon transferring it to Boulder, CO) that I am working on focusing on the women’s health patient. I recently met with some mental health professionals who worked specifically with the peripartum population of women. It was an inspiring conversation and it roused me to delve more into the peripartum world of pelvic floor physical therapy. I know that there is so much more to learn more about how I can help this specific population and I am interested in narrowing my niche practice down even more to serve this population more effectively.
The pelvic health niche of physical therapy is going big places and I am so excited to be a part of it. I have been inspired and excited by the work I have done with women thus far and my passion has only grown as the niche in the profession grows. I find myself being incredibly enthusiastic about spreading the word of pelvic floor PT to as many women as I can. I know that there are so many women out there who are suffering from one issue or another that can be helped and even reversed with pelvic floor PT; issues that many people might consider surgery as the only option. If I can prevent even just one surgical intervention with conservative pelvic floor work, then I will be a happy person. I am passionate about educating as many women as possible about pelvic floor PT because even if the one woman I am talking to doesn’t have a need for pelvic floor PT, her mom or her sister or a good friend of her’s might need it and the word could be spread. I know having more in depth knowledge of peripartum pelvic floor PT will greatly benefit my treatment style and will aid me in my pursuit of educating as many women around me as possible that conservative treatment for their pain is an option. Preventing surgical intervention through education and spreading the word of pelvic floor PT is part of my mission and will help me enhance my abilities.