Empathy at the core of Greendale Physical Therapy’s practice  


By Jeff Theodore, Contributing Writer

Empathy at the core of Greendale Physical Therapy’s practice  
The team at Greendale Physical Therapy poses for a photo inside their new Marlborough location. (Photo/Dakota Antelman)

REGION – For Garen Sahagian, Greendale Physical Therapy has been a lifesaver.

“The experience of having therapy there has given me a second chance,” said Sahagian, who has sought out therapy at Greendale after each of his five joint replacements over the years. “The people who work there know their business. It’s physical therapy in the modern age as it should be.”

The practice is just as founder and owner Jon Dooley designed it, with traits such as kindness, empathy and competency instilled in those who work there.

“Our business tagline is you don’t have to be an Olympic athlete to be treated like one,” Dooley said in a recent interview. “Our principles of kindness and compassion will not be ignored on the clinical or administrative interactions with patients.”

Now, Greendale which recently opened in Marlborough, is getting set to expand that tradition of empathy there, with a new location  at 435 Lakeside Avenue in town. This is Greendale’s fourth location in Central Massachusetts, alongside other clinic sites in Shrewsbury, Clinton and Worcester.

Greendale boasts legacy of care

Dooley opened his first clinic about 20 years ago as an ambitious Boston University graduate seeking to make his mark in physical therapy.

“Back then there weren’t many physical therapy jobs around, so I was just trying to make a job for myself,” he said. “I didn’t know whether it was going to work out, but it turned out to be a good investment.”

Dooley attributes much of his success to his team of 24 therapists and administrative staffers.

“We look for people who are truly caring and have a thirst for improvement to sharpen their skills,” he said.

Dooley seeks therapists who can guide patients by developing treatment programs that have result-driven outcomes, as Greendale PT prides itself on outcome results that exceed national averages in all four outcomes it measures.

For instance, Sahagian, who has been a frequent Greendale Physical Therapy patient since its first clinic opened, said he appreciates the clinic’s hands-on physical therapy approach.

“The main therapist I work with, Joe Magdis, is a magician with his hands,” Sahagian said. “…With Greendale, they give you a holistic approach, which includes nutrition management and pushing flexibility and mobility exercises in a big way.”

Dooley urges staff and patients alike to be educated about the latest advancements in physical therapy, such as cupping, which improves circulation in various body parts by using specialized cups to create suction, or dry needling, which calls for inserting non-medicated needles through the skin to relieve pain.

Greendale also offers Blood Flow Restriction treatments, which help accelerate patient gains in strength and range of motion in an injured limb.

“In recent years, people are becoming more educated about taking care of themselves and accessing physical therapy more often,” Dooley said. “I believe it has turned into a primary outlet to access care for musculosketal conditions because it’s non-surgical and non-pharmaceutical.”

Grand opening scheduled

Greendale will hold a grand opening/open house at its new Marlborough location at 435 Lakeside Avenue (Rt. 20), near the APEX Center on April 2. The event will run from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

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