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for the Best Place to Work

"It is amazing the unique way the staff works as a whole unit. You have created a terrific environment where hard work and fun made my visits with Bodycentral a totally positive experience!" - E. Campbell

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About Us: A Note From the Founders

Tonya Bunner PT, DPT, WCS, OCS, BCB-PMD
Jennifer Allen PT, DPT, OCS, SCS, CHT

Bodycentral Physical Therapy was opened in 2001 with a dynamic vision; to be THE provider of choice for people in Tucson experiencing musculoskeletal injuries and pain conditions. Bodycentral remains locally owned and operated right here in Tucson!

Our talented staff includes Doctors of Physical Therapy and therapists with Board Certifications in Orthopaedics, Sports, & Women's Health. Our mission is to provide quality, evidence-based treatment for all musculoskeletal problems- doing this with an exceptional patient experience. Our goal is for you to get back to the things you love!

We support our local community by being involved in many organizations. We have special programs and lecture series on health and wellness, fit for surgery programs, pregnancy wellness, and osteoporosis prevention to name a few. We always welcome suggestions!

We have four convenient locations so we can improve the health and wellness of our community! See our locations

 

 

 

Our Professional Staff

Tonya Bunner PT, DPT, OCS, WCS BCB-PMD
Jennifer Allen PT, DPT, OCS, SCS, CHT
Jean Holm PT, MPT, CKTP
Stephanie Popelka PT, DPT
Jessica Thomas PT, DPT
Katie Sandvig PT, DPT
Melissa Buss, PT, DPT, WCS, CLT
Leigh Prescott, PT, DPT,OCS, SCS
Kristi Sullivan PTA, CKTP
Andres Aponte PTA, CPT
T. Steve Mills, PTA, CPT
Gavon Michalegko PTA
Ashley Wright PTA
Sarah Davin, PT, DPT, SCS, ATC, LAT, CSCS
Jennifer Whitlow, PT, DPT
Mark Lawhon, PT, DPT
Cortney Young, PT, DPT
Tal Milchan, PT, DPT
Paul Winkler, PT, DPT
Kristen Waldron,PT,DPT

Tonya Bunner, PT, DPT, OCS, WCS, BCB-PMD

Education:
Doctor of Physical Therapy AT Still University
Masters of Science in Physical Therapy Old Dominion University
Bachelor of Science in Accounting West Virginia University

Areas of Advanced Training and Specializations:
Board Certified Clinical Specialist Women's Health Physical Therapy
Board Certified in Surface EMG/Biofeedback for Pelvic Muscle Dysfunction
Board Certified Orthopaedic Specialist

Areas of Special Interest and training:
Dr. Bunner has had extensive training in Orthopaedic topics and Women's Health including:

  • Muscle Energy Techniques for the Spine and Extremities
  • Spinal Manipulation and Mobilization
  • Myofascial Release
  • Strain/Counterstrain Techniques
  • Shoulder Pathophysiology
  • Functional Analysis and Management of the Lumbo-Pelvic-Hip Complex
  • Cervical, Thoracic and Rib Dysfunction
  • Women's Health Treatment Techniques for (Incontinence, Pelvic Pain, Constipation, Pain with Intercourse, Osteoporosis)
  • Pregnancy and Post Partum including High Risk Pregnancy
  • Tailbone, Coccyx Pain
  • Graston Technique
  • Female Athlete Rehabilitation and Conditioning
  • Temporomandibular joint pathology, Headaches, and Craniofacial Pain
  • Pediatric Incontinence, Constipation, and Bed Wetting
  • Men's Health Prostatitis, Incontinence, Pelvic Pain, Post-Prostatectomy Rehabilitation


Professional Memberships:
American Physical Therapy Association- Women's Health Section
Arizona Physical Therapy License

Outside the Office:
Outside the office Dr. Bunner enjoys exercising and cycling, shopping, cooking Italian cuisine, and spending time with her family.

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Jennifer Allen, PT, DPT, OCS, SCS, CHT

Education:
AT Still University - Doctor of Physical Therapy
West Virginia University School of Medicine - Bachelor of Science Physical Therapy
Shepherd College (University) - Psychology/Biology

Advanced Training:
Dr. Allen has been practicing orthopaedic and sports physical therapy, and hand therapy since 1994. She has attended a multitude of continuing education courses related to the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of all musculoskeletal problems. Special topics include:

  • Muscle Energy Techniques/ Joint Mobilization/HVLA Thrust Techniques
  • Certified in Graston Technique
  • Hand and Upper Extremity Splinting
  • Lower Extremity Biomechanics and Video Analysis/ Foot and Ankle
  • Treatment of the Female Athlete
  • Evaluation and Treatment of Runners, Swimmers, Baseball & Softball Players
  • Temporomandibular and Craniofacial Pain
  • Sports performance enhancement
  • Evaluation and treatment of Dancers

Community Involvement and Activities:
Dr. Allen believes in supporting the local community and has been involved in many activities in Tucson over the past few years including:

  • Naval ROTC at University of Arizona
  • Arizona Heat Professional Women's Professional Softball Team
  • Better than Ever Program and Arizona Cancer Center
  • Ft. Lowell Shootout (Soccer)
  • Ballet Tucson
  • Clinical Instructor for Northern Arizona University, Ohio State University, Pima Medical Institute


Professional Memberships:
American Physical Therapy Association- Orthopaedic, Sports, Education, and Research Sections
American Academy of Orthopaedic Manual Physical Therapists
American Softball Association (Coach)

Board Certifications:
Board Certified Orthopaedic Clinical Specialist
Board Certified Sports Clinical Specialist
Certified Hand Therapist

Research:
"The Effects of Strength and Proprioception Training on Pitching Speed in Elite High School Level Fast-pitch Softball Players"

Other Activities:
Spending time with her family – especially hiking in Sedona, and canoeing and fishing in Angel Fire, New Mexico. Playing her guitars, listening to music, cooking new and exciting recipes, boxing/martial arts and spending time with her black Labrador retriever - Guinness. She is a past NCAA softball player (shortstop).

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Jean Holm, PT, MPT, CKTP

Education:
Master's Degree Physical Therapy; BA Degree Psychology

Areas of Advanced Training and Specializations:
Certified Kinesiotape Technique Practitioner; Graston Technique for diagnosing and treating disorders of the skeletal muscles and related connective tissue; Janda's approach to the evaluation and management of chronic musculoskeletal pain

Areas of Special Interest and Training:
I enjoy working with low back pain patients in optimizing CORE stability and structural alignment, post-operative joint replacement, post-operative rotator cuff repair. I have a particular interest in working with athletes of all ages, having been a scholarship athlete in college and continuing on afterwards at the professional level in Europe. I have a been a clinician almost 5 years (since June, 2008), working at a busy outpatient orthopedic clinic in Albuquerque, NM for 4 years before moving to Tucson to work at BodyCentral Physical Therapy (June, 2012). Prior to becoming a physical therapist, I worked in the social service and criminal justice fields, deciding at age 45 to embark on a career in physical therapy. My goals are to take additional training for certifications in orthopedics (OCS), sports (SCS), and orthopedic manual techniques (COMT).

Outside of the Clinic:
I enjoy rock climbing, hiking, reading (research articles, psychological thriller novels), going to the theatre, and mentoring my nieces.

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Stephanie Popelka, PT, DPT

Education:
Bachelor of Arts from University of Notre Dame in Psychology and Pre-professional Studies, Doctor of Physical Therapy from Northwestern University

Areas of Advanced Training and Specialization:
Graston Technique, Muscle Energy techniques, Mulligan techniques, joint mobilizations, trigger point release, and soft tissue mobilizations

Areas of Special Interest and Training:
She practiced the first 7.5 years of her career for an orthopedic, sports medicine, industrial rehabilitation company in Chicago, and she came to BodyCentral in the Summer of 2012. Her interests are in upper and lower extremity injuries as well as in spine and pelvic dysfunctions. She takes a special interest in helping to rehabilitate the injured athlete, whether you were injured on the field or on the job.

Outside of the Clinic:
Stephanie enjoys spending time with her husband, Jeff, her dog Thor, her family, and her friends. She also enjoys cross-stitching, baking, watching sports, playing tennis, skiing, riding her bike, hiking, and spending time outdoors.

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Jessica Thomas, PT, DPT

Education:
Doctor of Physical Therapy from the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences
Bachelor of Science in Exercise & Sports Science from Oregon State University

Special Interests and Training:
Examination, Evaluation, Assessment, Treatment, and Injury prevention for the spine and pelvis Manual Therapy Techniques for the Spine and Extremities Women and Men's Health: Treatment of incontinence, Sacroiliac Pain, pain with pregnancy, and pelvic pain Running Performance

Advanced Training:
Dr. Thomas is working towards her Manual Therapy Certification which will be completed in 2015 through the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences.

Professional Memberships:
American Physical Therapy Association: Orthopaedic Section Member & Women's Health Member

Outside the Office:
Dr. Thomas enjoys running, hiking, Kettlebell training, traveling, cooking, baking, spending time with family and friends, and learning about movement.

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Katie Sandvig, PT, DPT

Education:
Doctor of Physical Therapy Des Moines University
Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science at University of Mary

Areas of Special Interests and Training:
Women's Health treatment techniques for Incontinence, Pelvic Pain, Constipation, Pain with Intercourse, Pregnancy, Post Partum, and Coccyx pain

Orthopedic Treatment Techniques:
Manual therapy techniques for treatment of all spinal and extremity pathologies Individualized exercise programs for return to functional and athletic activities.

Professional Memberships:
American Physical Therapy Association- Women's Health Section Arizona Physical Therapy License

Outside the Office:
Outside the office Dr. Sandvig enjoys running, hiking, snowboarding, spending time with family and friends, and being outdoors.

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Melissa Buss, PT, DPT, WCS, CLT

Education:
UPMC WomensRehab and Men's Health Residency Program
Doctor of Physical Therapy – University of Pittsburgh
Bachelor of Science in Psychology – University of Pittsburgh
Bachelor of Science in Rehabilitation Science with Certificate in Pathokinesiology – University of Pittsburgh

Areas of Advanced Training and Specializations:
Board Certified Clinical Specialist Women's Health Physical Therapy
Certified Lymphedema Therapist
Graduate of ABPTRFE Certified Residency Program – Women and Men's Health

Areas of Special Interest and Training:

Dr. Buss has had extensive training in Orthopaedic topics and Women's Health including:

  • Spinal Manipulation and Mobilization
  • Myofascial Release
  • Gynecologic Visceral Manipulation
  • Functional Analysis and Management of the Lumbo-Pelvic-Hip Complex
  • Women's Health Treatment Techniques for (Incontinence, Pelvic Pain, Constipation, IBS, Painful Bladder Syndrome, Pain with Intercourse, Osteoporosis)
  • Pregnancy and Post-partum including High Risk Pregnancy
  • Tailbone, Coccyx Pain
  • Female Athlete Rehabilitation and Conditioning
  • Pediatric Incontinence, Constipation, and Bed Wetting
  • Men's Health Prostatitis, Incontinence, Pelvic Pain, Post-Prostatectomy Rehabilitation
  • Lymphedema Therapy
  • Post -Oncologic (Breast, Pelvic, Gynecologic and Prostate Cancers) Rehabilitation
  • Pediatrics including torticollis

Professional Memberships:
American Physical Therapy Association- Women's Health Section
Arizona Physical Therapy License

Teaching Experience:
Adjunct faculty University of Pittsburgh
Adjunct Faculty and Duquesne University

Outside of the Clinic:
Outside the office Dr. Buss enjoys spending time with family and friends, listening to and singing along to music, hiking, cooking, reading, and crafting! She loves traveling and exploring and believes life is one grand adventure!

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Leigh Prescott, PT, DPT, OCS, SCS

Education:
University of Vermont Doctor of Physical Therapy 2009
University of Vermont Bachelor of Science Nutrition and Food Sciences 2007

Specialized Training and Advanced Certifications:
ABPTS Board Certified Orthopedic Specialist
ABPTS Board Certified Sports Specialist
Certified Kinesiotaping Practioner, KT 1, 2 & 3
Graston Technique Practioner
Emergency Medical Responder

Recent Coursework:Fit for running: assessment, rehab, and training strategies to minimize injury Current concepts in the treatment recognition of SLAP tears

Areas of Special Interest:
Graston Technique
Kinesiotape application
Female athlete injuries
Post operative diagnoses of shoulder and knee
Injury prevention for all age athletes and weekend warriors
Evaluation and treatment of all orthopedic and sports injuries

Memberships:
American Physical Therapy Association

Dr. Prescott has been working in an orthopedic physical therapy setting since 2009. She believes that a combination of evidenced-based medicine, manual therapy, comprehensive patient education, and an individualized exercise program are vital in achieving patient specific goals and succeeding in rehabilitation.

Outside the Office:
Leigh is originally from Maine and enjoys spending time outdoors with her family and friends.

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Kristi Sullivan, PTA, CKTP

Education:
Graduated from Northern Virginia Community College 1993
Began PTA career in VA and has since practiced in GA,SC, and AZ in a variety of outpatient orthopaedic clinics
Was first PTA in Northern Arizona at Flagstaff Medical Center
Joined Bodycentral in 2007 and works in our orthopaedic and Women's Health Teams

Advanced Training:
Trained in Graston soft tissue mobilization and as a Kinesiotape practitioner
Became Certified as a Kinesiotape practitioner in 2012
Association memberships: APTA

Outside of the Office:
Kristi is an active volunteer member of her sons' Cub Scout troop, gymnastics teams and church food bank
Kristi was also an accomplished gymnast

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Andres Aponte, PTA, CPT

Education:
Chadron State University; Bachelor's Degree in Applied Science
Pima Medical Institute; Associates Degree in Occupational Science- Physical Therapist Assistant

Areas of Advanced Training and Specializations:
American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) personal training certification
Functional Movement Screening (FMS) I&II certifications
Hardstyle Kettlebell Certification (HKC)

Interests:
As a lifelong learner, Andres enjoys being able to integrate rehabilitation concepts with physical fitness to enable patients to return to, maintain and improve their active lifestyle. Other interests include continuing education in specific techniques such as Graston, strain/counterstrain, joint and soft tissue mobilizations, and kinesiotaping.

Professional Memberships:
American Physical Therapy Association

Outside the Office:Outside of the office, Andres enjoys competitive powerlifting, movies, music, documentaries, and travel; especially with his 2 dogs Hugo and Cesar.

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T. Steve Mills, PTA, CPT

Education:
Pima Medical Institute – Associates of Occupational Science (Physical Therapist Assistant)
University of Colorado Boulder- Associates of Business

Certifications and Special Training
Certified Personal Trainer (National Academy of Sports Medicine)
Performance Enhancement Specialist (National Academy of Sports Medicine)
Corrective Enhancement Specialist (National Academy of Sports Medicine)
Team Quest MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) Instructor's Course

Outside the Office:
In my free time I have enjoyed all kinds of outdoor activities. I love to hike, climb, and camp with my wife and my dogs. I have also been heavily involved in martial arts for most of my life, with backgrounds in muay thai, jui jitsu, and wrestling.

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Gavon Michalegko, PTA

Education:
Sabino High School class of '03
Pima Community College; Associates Degree in Liberal Arts
Pima Medical Institute; Associates Degree in Occupational Science (Physical Therapist Assistant); 2011

Areas of Advanced Training and Specialization:
Graston Technique; 2012

Areas of Special Interests:
12 years of soccer experience in Tucson, AZ
Outdoor Sports and Recreational Activities-Hunting, Fishing
Weight Training and Strengthening/Conditioning
Orthopedic Rehabilitation

Professional Memberships:
American Physical Therapy Association

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Ashley Wright, PTA

Education:
Marana High School; Graduated as a Certified Nursing Assistant; 2006
Pima Medical Institute; Certificate in Phlebotomy; 2009
Pima Medical Institute; Associates Degree in Occupational Science; 2014

Areas of Special Interest:
Ashley is very interested in expanding her knowledge in areas such as:

  • Orthopedic Rehabilitation
  • Women's Health
  • Manual Therapy

Outside the Office:
She enjoys spending time with her family, trying new recipes (especially those she finds on Pinterest), getting lost in a book from time to time, as well as, making memories and laughing as much as possible with her fiance Cavin.

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Sarah Davin, PT, DPT, SCS, ATC, LAT, CSCS

Education:
Doctor of Physical Therapy The George Washington University
Bachelor of Science in Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, with a concentration in Athletic Training University of Pittsburgh

Areas of Advanced Training and Specializations:
Board Certified Sports Specialist
UPMC/CRS Sports Residency- 1 year internship with the Pittsburgh Steelers
Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist

Areas of Special Interest and Training:

  • Graston Technique
  • Post-operative ACL Rehabilitation
  • Post-operative Rotator Cuff/SLAP Rehabilitation
  • Return to throwing
  • Injury prevention for the female athlete
  • Evaluation and treatment of the overhead athlete, football player, and soccer players
  • Return to sports and sports performance
  • Post concussion exertional rehabilitation

Professional Memberships:
American Physical Therapy Association- Orthopedic and Sports Section
National Strength and Conditioning Association

Outside the Office:
I am from Pittsburgh, PA and am an avid fan of all Pittsburgh sports teams, especially the Steelers. When I am not watching sports, I enjoy working out, reading, baking, and hanging out with my two amazingly cuddly cats- Wesley and Buttercup.

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Jennifer Whitlow, PT, DPT

Education:
Doctorate of Physical Therapy, University of Missouri Columbia
Bachelor of Science, Health Sciences, University of Missouri Columbia

Areas of Special Interest:
Jennifer is currently working to develop many areas of her practice from general orthopaedic conditions, to pelvic health, to early childhood development. She enjoys seeing a variety of patient's in order to expand upon her knowledge of a variety of pathologies. Her goals are to take additional training for certification in both orthopedic manual techniques and Women's Health.

Professional Memberships:
American Physical Theraphy Association

Outside the Office:
Jennifer is originally from Kansas City, Missouri where she lived until relocating to the Southwest. She enjoys using her time learning about new places and seeking out new adventures, especially outdoors and through community organizations.

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Mark Lawhon PT, DPT

Education:
Doctorate of Physical Therapy, University of Missouri Columbia
Bachelor of Science, Health Sciences, University of Missouri Columbia

Areas of Special Interest:
Mark enjoys treating a variety of sports rehabilitation and orthopedic conditions, and is willing to work with any patient who is interested in participating in physical therapy. My goals are to further my knowledge in all areas of care, with particular interest in obtaining certifications in orthopedics, sports rehabilitation, and orthopedic manual techniques.

Professional Memberships:
American Physical Therapy Association

Outside the Clinic:
Mark arrived in the Arizona this summer after having previously lived in Missouri. He loves the outdoors, playing sports, staying fit, spending time with friends and family, the holiday season, watching movies, listening to a variety of music, venturing out and about on the weekends, and supporting his Midwest sports teams (Kansas City Chiefs, Kansas City Royals, and Missouri Tigers).

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Cortney Young, PT, DPT

Education:

Doctor of Physical Therapy, University of South Carolina

Certifications/Advanced Training:
Certified Lymphedema Therapist

Dr. Young began her PT career in Florida in 2008 and has since practiced in Nevada, Kansas, South Carolina and Arizona in a variety of settings. She has experience treating a vast patient population, from pediatrics to geriatrics.

Outside the Clinic:
She is originally from Kansas and enjoys biking, jogging and spending time with family and friends.

 

 

 

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Tal Milchan, PT, DPT

Education:
Doctor of Physical Therapy at the University of Evansville
Bachelor of science in Exercise Science at the University of Evansville

Areas of Special Interest:
I enjoy working with a variety of patients from general orthopedic, young athletes and recreational athlete to geriatrics and anyone who has a neurological condition. I strive to help patients return to their prior level of function, using the most recent evidence based treatment.

Outside of Office:
In my free time I enjoy traveling the world, hiking , backpacking, camping and spending time with my family and friends.

 

 

 

 

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Paul Winkler, PT, DPT

Education:
Doctor of Physical Therapy, University of Maryland
Bachelor of Science in History, Saint Mary's College of Maryland

Areas of Special Interest and Training:

  • Balance and vestibular rehabilitation
  • Myofascial Release
  • Evaluation and treatment of orthopedic and sports injuries
  • Post-operative joint rehabilitation
  • Rotator cuff, labral lesions, and other shoulder pathology
  • Neurological rehabilitation
  • Core and lumbopelvic strengthening techniques

Paul advocates a combined approach of manual techniques and therapeutic exercise to help clients return to pain free self-care, work, and recreational activities. Outside the office, he stays busy cycling, running, camping, and rock climbing. He also enjoys cooking, music, pottery, and volunteer work.

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