About

Whitney Sippl, DPT, WCS, CPT

Board Certified Women's Clinical Specialist (WCS)

Doctor of Physical Therapy (Long Island University)

Bachelor of Science - Psychology (University of Wisconsin)

 

I am a women’s health physical therapist and board certified as a women’s health clinical specialist.  Originally from Wisconsin, I received my Bachelors of Science degree in Psychology from the University of Wisconsin graduating in the top 10 percent.  I then went on to pursue my Doctorate of Physical Therapy degree at Long Island University in Brooklyn, NY, graduating at the top of the class with a 4.0 GPA. 

 

I am passionate about pre/postnatal care and believe physical therapy services during pregnancy and after delivery should be standard of care in the US.   I am devoted to promoting awareness, well being, and healing of my patients with a goal of empowering women during the prenatal and postnatal periods to address any discomforts or concerns with regards to their bodies.  Many women are told that symptoms such as incontinence, painful intercourse, scar pain, pelvic girdle/back pain, or abdominal separation are normal after having a baby; however, although these conditions may be common, they are not “normal” and there are many techniques available to address these concerns. 

 

I love teaching women simple ways to take care of themselves while their bodies are changing during pregnancy and enjoy helping women heal and get their bodies back after their journey through pregnancy and childbirth.  I got to experience first hand how the body changes during pregnancy and after birth as I welcomed my daughter in April 2014 and my son in June 2017.

 

I travel to moms' and expecting moms' homes throughout Orange County, and also provide services at a clinic in Costa Mesa for anyone who lives outside of Orange County or anyone that would prefer a clinic environment. 

I currently teach a free "Postnatal Rejuvenation Class" at various locations around Orange County every month.  For schedule and details see the Prenatal & Postnatal Classes Tab.  I have also launched an online series of videos for my "Postpartum Physical Recovery class" for those who are unable to attend in person, and an online "Prenatal Physical Health & Labor Prep class" in the Prenatal & Postnatal Classes Tab.

In addition to these local classes, I speak regularly as a guest expert for The New Mom School, am a guest speaker for mom's groups throughout OC, provide inservices for various Midwifery, Doula, and OBGYN offices and meetings, and speak around the country for MommyCon.

Services

During Pregnancy

Some common conditions that we can address during pregnancy include:

  • Back pain

  • Pubic bone pain

  • Tailbone pain

  • Urinary incontinence

  • Pelvic pressure/heaviness

  • Painful intercourse

  • Abdominal separation (Diastasis Recti)

  • Scar adhesions (Cesarean or perineal)

 

Treatment is focused on restoring optimal muscle tone, strength, coordination, and flexibility in the surrounding pelvic musculature of the back, abdomen, thighs, and pelvic floor using various manual therapy techniques and exercises.  

 

We can work on the pelvic floor muscles and perineal scar tissue to prevent perineal tearing as well as address any previous cesarean scar tissue to improve your chances of a successful vaginal delivery (VBAC).  We can also address appropriate posture, body mechanics, and core stability to prepare you for the increased demands of caring for a baby.  Biofeedback is another tool we can use to assess your pelvic floor and transverse abdominus muscles (see biofeedback info above).  You will also be given a home exercise program to maintain your progress in between sessions.

 

If any of the treatment techniques would be best performed with you lying on your stomach I have a pregnancy cushion that I can bring to use during your treatment session that allows you to lie on your stomach, which is much appreciated during pregnancy since you likely haven't been able to lie on your stomach for months.

 

Labor & Delivery Prep Session

I recommend having this session scheduled between weeks 34-36 of your pregnancy but it can also be done before or after these weeks as well.  If your partner and any other birth professional would like to attend that would be ideal.

We will review:

  • Labor positions with biofeedback to determine in which positions your pelvic floor muscles are the most relaxed

  • Perineal massage techniques to prevent perineal tearing

  • Partner techniques for managing back discomfort during labor

  • Breathing techniques with pelvic floor muscle relaxation

 

Postnatal Services

Once you're postpartum, you're always postpartum, so these visits can be done even years after having your baby to address any of the symptoms below.  Ideally, all women would have a physical therapy screening at 6 weeks after birth, right after your 6 week follow up with your OB or midwife.  At that visit we would do a full postnatal screening including assessment of posture, body mechanics, scar tissue mobililty, alignment, diastasis recti, core stability, pelvic floor muscle tone, strength, and endurance and get you started on a treatment plan to address any dysfunction we find.  If you have pain or discomfort before the 6 week follow up, we can address your needs earlier but will not perform any internal pelvic floor muscle work until you are cleared by your healthcare practitioner.

 

After you have your baby you may experience various discomforts or symptoms including:

  • Scar pain or restrictions (Cesarean or perineal)

  • Urinary incontinence

  • Urinary or bowel urge or frequency

  • Pelvic pressure/heaviness

  • Painful intercourse

  • Abdominal separation (Diastasis Recti)

  • Poor posture

  • Difficulty walking or lifting

  • Back pain

  • Pubic bone pain

  • Tailbone pain

 

Although these symptoms may be common, they are NOT normal and in most cases can be easily treated with physical therapy. 

 

Other services that are available that can only be provided in your home are assessment and setup of your nursing/feeding station for optimal posture and alignment and body mechanics evaluation and training for childcare activities such as lifting your baby, transfers into and out of the crib, car seat, bath tub, stroller, and any other activities that you would like assessed.

 

Biofeedback is another helpful tool to use in the postnatal period to help you improve awareness of your pelvic floor muscles by getting visual feedback when you contract and relax the muscles.  We can also use this as you perform functional activities to make sure you are activating your pelvic floor when needed.

Fertility

Mechanical infertililty can be treated with various manual and visceral physical therapy techniques for your pelvic organs and surrounding pelvic musculature.  Whitney is trained in a fertility treatment protocol for an upcoming multi-clinic study that is looking at the effectiveness of physical therapy techniques in treating mechanical infertility.  

 

 

Each treatment session typically includes a combination of manual techniques including myofascial release, trigger point release, strain-counterstrain, scar tissue mobilization, visceral mobilization, muscle energy techniques, proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation, neuromuscular re-education and exercises including core stabilization, therapeutic exercise, postural education, and body mechanics training. 

 

Biofeedback is another tool that we can use in your home to assess and treat your pelvic floor and transverse abdominus muscles.  This is a tool that measures nerve activity in your pelvic floor muscles and then transmits it to a computer so you can see your pelvic floor muscle activity on the screen as your muscles contract and relax.  It provides a great visual for you to see the strength, endurance, and relaxation of your pelvic floor muscles during kegels.  We can also use it to monitor both your pelvic floor and transverse abdominus activation during functional activities like lifting, squating, lunging, childcare activities, and exercise to determine if you are using your core muscles appropriately both during pregnancy and postnatally.  Another great use of this technology is to assess labor positions while you are pregnant to see what positions allow you to relax your pelvic floor muscles the most so you can use that information while in labor.

For more information on what to expect during a session, please take a look at my article, "You’re putting what, where? Women’s health physical therapy for pregnancy, labor & delivery, and the postnatal periods"

Treatment

Speaking Engagements

I enjoy speaking regularly to teach women all over the country about how to prevent and treat various symptoms related to pregnancy and the postpartum period (and really anything related to the pelvic floor!) and to improve awareness about the benefits of women's health physical therapy.  I also love providing education to other health care professionals.

 

I am very active in the southern California community and also extend my knowledge throughout the country.  Here are some of my regular speaking engagements

 

  • Guest speaker around the country for MommyCon

  • Guest expert for The New Mom School

  • Guest speaker for mom's groups throughout OC

  • Provide inservices for various Midwifery, Doula, and OBGYN offices and meetings

  • Provide trainings for prenatal and postnatal fitness professionals

  • Provide "Postnatal Rejuvenation" classes throughout OC and online

  • Provide "Prenatal Prep" class online

I also provide interviews for articles and various publications and would be happy to provide this for both written or live interviews.  You can read the article from my most recent interview featured on The Ladies School of Badasserie:

Orange County physical therapy services in your home for pregnancy, postpartum, & pelvic conditions

Copyright 2015 Whitney Sippl

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