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  • Writer's pictureJane Franczak

My MFR Journey -by Jane

OK - Here it goes... 

I came to MFR because I had was doing traveling PT and landed in Page, Arizona. Back then, there was no internet. We had a PT magazine which advertised continued Education courses. The triangle with the words "Sedona, JFB and MFR" were in every issue. In PT school, they described MFR in school as this voodoo thing. It was always a lingering thought in the back of my mind.  

Five years prior to my travels, while living in Denver, I been in a bad car accident. My body continued to ache. I had pain from my left great toe to my hip and shoulder, neck and into my head. The doctors wanted to fuse my sacroiliac joint! I had been to a manual therapist in Denver, which helped, but it still wasn't the solution. Neither would I allow for a surgery!  

Eventually, when travels took me to a job in Sedona, the land of MFR, I decided I must take a Myofascial Release class and fit in. I started at the beginning with MFR 1, Feb of 1998 on airport mesa at the lodge and was hooked by the work. John had picked on me - as he likes to do- and I was drawn in by his warmth and playful nature. I may have been one of the first demos on the stage, and I unwound. I recall returning to my seat and someone asked me, "What was that like? Tell me about it!" I couldn't say anything other than," Amazing and right!"  

I signed up to take more classes. Meanwhile, I had bumped into someone from the courses while at the grocery store. I told her that I hoped to work at TOR someday. She just laughed and said, "Keep taking those classes and let's see what happens." Being open to advice, I did.  

I had become good friends with the office manager at TOR, an amazing and beautiful woman named Rebecca Brewer. She encouraged me to apply for the PT position at TOR. Being open to advice, I did.  Part of the interview consisted of a "skills test." I was gently guided to refine my techniques. Being open to advice, I did. (Are ya seeing the theme here?). Well, as fate would have it, I got the job.  During my time there, I would assist at classes and take more classes. I'd learn while at work from my coworkers and from John. I asked lots of questions, I practiced techniques on my coworkers after work.  I treated John (At first, I was terrified, but I proceeded into the room and faced the challenge. ) I took advice and refined my skills as he recommended.  

Back then, several of us on staff did after-work study groups. One Friday, we practiced pelvic health techniques. Once again, I was hooked. As life took me out of Sedona to other towns, I continued to pursue pelvic health classes. Each class offered a path to a certification. They encouraged me to pursue the certificate- so I did. I now have the Certificate of Achievement in Pelvic PT (CAPP) and the Board Certification as a Women's Clinical Specialist (WCS).... and it all started with MFR.  

As you can imagine, all of the training with MFR messed with my ability to fit into the traditional PT world. I tried to fit in - but it was like trying to fit a square peg into a round hole. I tried for 3 years at Johns Hopkins Hospital as a pelvic floor specialist. They advised me to train and get certified in Dry Needling. So, I did. They'd hear client's unwinding and ping my computer. They'd knock at my door and ask " Everything ok in there? Do you need help or are you just doing that Jane thing?" I tried for more years at other local clinics in Maryland to do "that Jane thing." I just wasn't corporate material and was encouraged to move on. So, I did.  

So, I finally decided (or fate decided for me) to start my own place. While assisting in Bethany between jobs, John encouraged me to leave my cards out on the table. Since I didn't have any, he advised me to write my name and number on a napkin. So, I did. People started calling for treatments. They kept calling. Fate kept nudging me. So, I listened.  

I started SerendipPT. I offer relief for Pain and pelvic health issues using mainly MFR. My MFR training and pelvic health training blends well. 

I continue to assist at MFR classes as my schedule allows. I continue to take MFR and pelvic health classes. I continue to follow advice and be open to learning and growing.  

One last thing... someone encouraged me to offer an MFR study group. My first response was, I have NO time for that!! Then, I softened into the thought.... SO, I DID! (I started the official Maryland's eastern shore MFR study group last year).  

So, in closing, I didn't feel like taking the time to write my MFR story... begrudgingly, I read John's encouragement this morning, to write it. "How does it make you feel", he asked. UGH! I have NO time for this!" I feel burdened to do it. Yet, following my prior examples, I DID.  

So, I have learned in this experience.

Be open.

Listen to what you are being guided to do. Accept the challenge.

Heed the advice and encouragement of others who have either been there and know the path or who need you to help them.

Lean into it.


Take your brakes off.

Enjoy the journey.  

Btw… all of that left sided pain is gone. Thanks for MFR!  

Jane O'Brien Franczak, PT, WCS, CMTPT, expert level, instructor, all classes, numerous repeats, lifelong learner.

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