Patricia (Ricia) Garrard, MS,PT, is a licensed Physical Therapist who has over 17 years experience in both hospital-based and private outpatient clinics with special emphasis on manual therapy, body mechanics training, and one on one patient care. She was selected as the Centennial Scholar at Louisiana Tech University from 1992-1996 where she graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Zoology. She earned her Master of Science Degree in Physical Therapy from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 1998. The primary focus of her career has been in outpatient orthopedics but she has also worked in home health and acute care as well as providing services such as developing a cardiopulmonary program, developing a screening tool and fitness program for gastric bypass candidates, providing wound care and education in a diabetic foot care clinic, and advocating for the Physical Therapy profession at the state level by participating in the governmental process to protect the Alabama PT Practice Act.
Ricia began practicing Pilates in 2010 and quickly saw the benefit firsthand in managing old sports injuries. In 2012, she was a member of a start up team that opened The Studio, a fitness studio which utilizes a therapy based Pilates program to develop a safe fitness environment and specializes in post-rehab clients, clients with a high risk of injury, or those in chronic pain. Also in 2012, Ricia took her first APPI course and saw the difference it makes in the clinical setting with improved outcomes and decreased rehabilitation time for patients at every level. She pursued the opportunity to become a proponent of APPI’s evidence based approach, completed further training, and began presenting APPI coursework early in 2015.
Ricia currently splits her time between her outpatient physical therapy work at Johnson and Hayes Physical Therapists in Huntsville, Alabama where she has been since 2004, giving private Pilates lessons at The Studio, and traveling to present coursework for APPI. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her husband and young daughter as well as volunteering on the boards of several local charitable organizations.