Therapydia NOLA physical therapist Jessica Hernandez takes some time to talk about the range of expertise in the PT profession, her interest in treating runners and how playing soccer led to a career in PT.
“Find something that you enjoy that involves moving your body at a moderate to high level. Then go do it!”
When did you know that you wanted to be a physical therapist?
In high school, I became interested in physical therapy when we had a PT come help out at our soccer games. I then volunteered at their clinic to learn more about the profession.
What is the biggest challenge involved in being a physical therapist?
The biggest challenge I have is to stay on top of the vast amount of information related to my job! I enjoy learning so that helps!
How do you like to stay active?
I train and compete in triathlons. I needed a new outlet for my competitive drive after my soccer career ended, so I chose triathlon.
What is your favorite song to get you motivated?
My favorite song continuously changes! I usually listen to hip hop/dance music to get me going!
What surprised you the most about the physical therapy profession?
I was surprised to learn that you can see two different physical therapists and have vastly different experiences as a patient. We have quite a range of expertise in this profession.
Are you currently pursuing any further education/certifications?
I have also prioritized learning and professional growth through education. Currently, my focus is learning more about how to effectively evaluate and treat runners.
What do you wish everyone knew about physical therapy?
That we don’t just stretch people. I don’t think the general population has any idea of what we do and how much we know.
Whats your go-to breakfast?
Every morning I eat a banana with peanut butter. I would much prefer an omelet and pancakes!
What is the most important trait a that a PT must have?
You have to be able to connect with all types of people and personalities. If you can’t mold to fit what the patient needs, you may not be as successful.
How do you unwind/de-stress?
I go lift weights, ride my bike or float around in my pool!
What is your favorite piece of wellness advice to offer?
Find something that you enjoy that involves moving your body at a moderate to high level. Then go do it!
Click here to learn more about Jessica and the other physical therapists at Therapydia NOLA.