Rebecca Neal joined Tidewater as a physical therapy assistant in September 2014. Prior to her work at the clinic, she was a Pilates instructor at her local YMCA, Town Center Fitness and Tidewater Community College, where she earned her certification as a PTA. After years of teaching Pilates, she encountered many class participants practicing Pilates for rehabilitation after injuries. Rebecca knew PT was a perfect field for her. Now she specializes in treating lymphedema patients.
“I love incorporating the core strengthening into patients’ plan of care,” Rebecca says. “I also enjoy treating cancer survivors. My daughter is a cancer survivor and I feel a strong connection with these amazing people.”
One such person a young woman who had conquered breast cancer but ultimately developed lymphedema. Rebecca observed the reduction in limb swelling after complete decongestive therapy (CDT) and realized what a difference she could make in patients’ lives. With treatment, the patient was able to return to her normal daily activities and, Rebecca says, her gratitude was incredibly moving.
Rebecca and her husband started the Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters (CHKD) Run/Walk for the Kids in 2006, in honor of their daughter’s successful treatment of neuroblastoma. “We wanted to give back to this remarkable place and their wonderful team,” she says. “This event has raised more than $750,000 for CHKD to help so many families.”
Outside the clinic, Rebecca loves to cook and spend time with her family, and cheering on her daughter’s swim team. She says it’s always important to listen to people and be interested in them because it shows how much you care.