Jessica Leslie, PT, MPT for Asheville Holistic Physical Therapy
I believe in the intuitive nature of the body to heal itself when shown the way. We are born with everything we need to survive and be happy. Throughout life, these things can be forgotten or bypassed, however, they are never lost.
The human body has an amazing way of persevering, and will alter its patterns to suit what we perceive as necessary to survive. Our body follows our mind, and what we set out to do, our body evolves to assist.
Pain and discomfort are messengers from our body. It is the physical manifestation of a glitch in the system, a pattern that needs re-examining, a part of you that needs attention.
Our work is to find where the body has followed the mind beyond the point of assisting–where it is now hindering. Together we restore the connections that have been forgotten and heal the places that hurt.
I have always had a profound interest in the human form and human movement. At a young age I began drawing the human figure. I also found that I had a gift for touch. I could find areas of restriction and holding in my family and friends and pets and I was drawn to further study anatomy and biomechanics.
In 2005, I graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill with a Bachelor’s degree in Exercise and Sport Science. Over the years, I worked as a fitness instructor, personal trainer, rehabilitation technician and chiropractic assistant. In doing so, I was introduced to different schools of thought and techniques and I witnessed amazing instances of healing. I knew I wanted to further my education to become a clinician. I began taking courses in therapeutic massage and became a licensed massage and bodywork therapist in 2009. Combining exercise and massage increased my interest in Physical Therapy, and I began taking prerequisite courses to gain entry to graduate school.
In 2012, I graduated with a Master’s Degree in Physical Therapy. This experience was eye-opening. I learned that rote memorization does not a good clinician make. I learned that I loved research, however, I also saw that not everything I have experienced has been –or even can be – researched. I found that black and white clinical knowledge is tested when shades of gray are reality. Luckily, I was blessed to find placement with several amazing clinical instructors, who encouraged and applauded the use of intuition while utilizing evidence-based practice. I was even more fortunate to have a few less than amazing clinical instructors—who taught me that not all clinicians are the same.
I became a licensed physical therapist in the state of North Carolina in February, 2013. My practice began in outpatient orthopedics, where I treated patients with musculoskeletal injuries, as well as those requiring post-operative rehabilitation. I enjoyed my job, however, I found it difficult to see multiple patients at once while providing the level of patient care that I felt necessary. Exceedingly laborious documentation for insurance reimbursement left even less time for patient care. I was burning out quickly and I was frustrated.
This frustration led me to enroll in a 9-month, 230 hour, yoga teacher training program at Asheville Yoga Center, with the intention of delving deeper into myself. This was a life-changing experience for me. I discovered a yearning to combine evidence-based practice with something else, something less tangible. No longer was I afraid to utter the words “intuitive healing”. The human body intuitively knows how to heal itself. Sometimes it just needs to be shown the way.
I am eager to provide a more patient-centered, holistic approach to healing. I have also been fortunate to teach yin, prenatal and vinyasa flow classes at Asheville Community Yoga.
In my practice, I enjoy an eclectic approach to healing and in any given session I will utilize joint mobilization, muscle energy technique, myofascial release, therapeutic breath-work, postural restoration, biomechanical analysis, neuromuscular re-education of muscular imbalance. I also find guided imagery and meditation, as well as sound and aromatherapy, to beneficial in calming the nervous system during. I am a big proponent of self-study and I am heavily influence by the amazing work and literature produced by the Postural Restoration Institute, Anatomy Trains Institute, Modern Manual Therapy, Integrative Manual Therapy Organization, and many more. I was fortunate to gain placement with Active Release Technique and St. Augustine Manual Therapy certified clinical instructors and I have spent the last 5 years of practice honing techniques learned from these amazing teachers. Additionally, I have completed the courses in yoga and self-care for chronic pain, prenatal/postnatal yoga, and yoga for the pelvic floor through Asheville Holistic Physical Therapy, as well as 3-D Maps through The Gray Institute and Sacro-iliac Mobilization through Great Lakes Seminars.
My biggest and most rewarding accomplishment by far, however, is being the mommy of my two daughters, ages 1 and 4.
I am so excited and humbled to work with and learn from Ruth and Libby at Asheville Holistic Physical Therapy, LLC!
Jessica Leslie, PT, MPT
NC License # P14095
“I spent literally years with constant low back pain. Jessi evaluated me, performed a few manual therapy techniques on my lower back, and taught me some new and creative stretches to help relieve my pain and stiffness. After just a few sessions my back pain was gone, and with the stretches and exercises Jessi provided me I’ve been able to maintain it! No back pain, amazing.” -David