SPEAR Midtown - W 44th St

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ABOUT

Located in the beautiful Bar Building steps from the infectious energy of Bryant Park and Times Square, the Midtown W. 44th Street clinic attracts commuters, neighborhood residents and tourists from all over the globe to its urban oasis. A skilled and diverse team helps an equally diverse patient po...

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MEET OUR PHYSICAL THERAPY STAFF

Phaeleau Cunneen, PT, CHT

Masters in Physical Therapy, Certified Hand Therapist

imgPhaeleau Cunneen, PT, CHT
PHYSICAL THERAPIST BIO

Phaeleau Cunneen is a native New Yorker, who was born and raised in Stuyvesant Town and went to Stuyvesant High School. After living in Hawaii for 10 years, he returned to New York and graduated with a Master of Science in Physical Therapy from Touro College. Phaeleau worked at the Hospital for Special Surgery for 10 years, where he specialized in sports medicine and hand therapy, and is a Certified Hand Therapist. He was an adjunct professor for many years and has lectured at both Hunter College and Columbia University. He has presented at the APTA conference in Denver and collaborated with several physicians, and together they published an article in the Journal of Arthroplasty on total femur replacements. In addition to being a hand therapist, Phaeleau has an interest in treating running injuries and has lectured with the industry’s leading experts on this subject. Phaeleau himself ran the New York City Marathon in 2006. He has also lectured on and is passionate about ACL injury prevention in kids. When not working, Phaeleau is busy cheering on his daughter, who is on her school’s track and field team. He loves to hike, and is currently trying to hike all 46 peaks in the Adirondacks. He is on 40 for the moment. But not for long! He is an avid bicyclist, who has been bicycling in New York City for over 40 years.

Nicole Obenrader, PT, DPT

Doctor of Physical Therapy

imgNicole Obenrader, PT, DPT
PHYSICAL THERAPIST BIO

Nicole earned her Doctor of Physical Therapy from Chatham University in Pittsburgh, PA, where she completed advanced courses in orthopedics. Nicole graduated with high honors from the University of Pittsburgh where she received her Bachelor of Science in Health and Physical Activity with a focus in Exercise Science. During her time at the University of Pittsburgh, she performed in the PITT Dance Ensemble and completed a course in instructing Yoga and Pilates. Through several orthopedic affiliations, Nicole has acquired a unique set of manual and orthopedic therapy skills, and enjoys utilizing these to gain exceptional patient outcomes. Nicole’s experience as a dancer and her passion for personal fitness give her a true appreciation for movement and the capacity of the human body. Originally from Oil City, Pennsylvania, Nicole enjoys exploring the art and food culture of New York City. In her spare time, she loves hiking, antique shopping, knitting, and traveling.

Melanie Rocchio, PT, DPT

Doctor of Physical Therapy

imgMelanie Rocchio, PT, DPT
PHYSICAL THERAPIST BIO

Melanie earned her Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from Hunter College where she graduated summa cum laude and received her Bachelor of Arts from SUNY Geneseo. While at Hunter, she presented a research project on Multiple Sclerosis at a national physical therapy conference held in Portland, Oregon. She also completed clinical affiliations in acute bedside care, adult neurological rehabilitation, and outpatient orthopedics. During her undergraduate career, Melanie was a member of the Geneseo women’s soccer team. Her interest in physical therapy was piqued after suffering from a season ending injury and undergoing rehabilitation. Since pursuing physical therapy, she continues to utilize both therapeutic exercise and manual therapy techniques throughout her treatments. She has taken multiple manual therapy courses through the Institute of Physical Art and Maitland-Australian Physiotherapy Seminars. Melanie values a holistic approach to treating patients and always strives to educate and empower her patients through the use of proper movement. Melanie stays active by running, hiking, playing soccer, and practicing Bikram yoga.

Deanna Marinucci, PT, DPT, CSCS

Doctor of Physical Therapy, Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist

imgDeanna Marinucci, PT, DPT, CSCS
PHYSICAL THERAPIST BIO

Deanna Marinucci earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Exercise Science from the University of Delaware. She then received her Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from New York Medical College. In addition to her doctorate, Deanna is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist. During her time at NYMC, Deanna conducted her doctoral research on running-related injuries and running gait analysis. Her outpatient orthopedic affiliations exposed her to a variety of diagnoses including sports related injuries, acute and chronic conditions, post-operative rehabilitation and neurological conditions. She also has clinical experience in the areas of pediatrics and trauma acute care. Deanna was first introduced to physical therapy as a result of her own shoulder injuries as a competitive swimmer. She now enjoys treating a diverse population of patients, including athletes in order optimize their performance and return them to sport. Her treatment is focused on manual therapy with an emphasis on therapeutic exercise and improving the biomechanics of functional movement. Deanna stays active by swimming, running and lifting. She enjoys participating in half marathons and volunteering at the NYC marathon medical tent. She also enjoys live music, traveling and exploring the city.

Luc Riche, PT, DPT

Doctor of Physical Therapy

imgLuc Riche, PT, DPT
PHYSICAL THERAPIST BIO

Luc earned his Clinical Doctorate in Physical Therapy from Stony Brook University. Prior to pursuing his DPT, Luc obtained his Bachelor of Science degree with Magna Cum Laude Honors in Fitness, Nutrition & Exercise Science from Queens College, City University of New York. He then went on to obtain his Clinical Doctorate in Physical Therapy from Stony Brook University. During his time at Stony Brook, Luc seized the unique opportunity to compete as a graduate student on the Men’s Club Rugby Team. But what Luc is most proud of during his time at SBU is organizing a Physical Therapy Mission Trip to Haiti, where he worked with underserved adults and pediatric patients with neurological and orthopedic dysfunction. Luc’s clinical affiliations include experience in various settings such as acute & subacute care, outpatient vestibular/neurological/orthopedic/sports rehab, and strength & conditioning facilities for D1 collegiate athletes. Most of Luc’s affiliations were completed in New York with the exception of his time in Florida, where we interned at Boca Raton Regional Hospital & XPE speed, strength & conditioning facility. During this time, Luc gained experience with both adult patients throughout the acute care setting as well as athletes in the NFL’s International Player Pathway Program, and those preparing for the 2017 NFL combine. When Luc is not helping individuals of all levels get back to the activities that they love, he enjoys exercising, playing sports, & volunteering.

Joshua Kaufman, PT, DPT

Doctor of Physical Therapy

imgJoshua Kaufman, PT, DPT
PHYSICAL THERAPIST BIO

Joshua Kaufman earned his Doctorate in Physical Therapy from New York Medical College after earning his Bachelor’s degree in Health Sciences & Public Health from Syracuse University. Josh’s clinical experience includes orthopedics, sports rehabilitation, acute/subacute rehabilitation and neurological rehabilitation. Josh grew up in a small town in northern New Jersey just outside New York City. He played soccer and ran track during his high school years. During his junior year of college, Josh spent six months abroad in London where he also traveled to Spain, Germany, Italy, and the Netherlands. It was during his travels overseas where he discovered his passion and pursuit for the field of Physical Therapy. During his three years in graduate school, Josh conducted research on Pediatric balance outcomes for his doctoral thesis and has recently submitted his project to the American Physical Therapy Association. One of his group mates for this project is also a Physical Therapist at SPEAR in the West 67th Street office. In his free time, Josh enjoys running, weight lifting, and swimming during the summer time.

Michelle Dearwater, PT, DPT

Doctor of Physical Therapy

imgMichelle Dearwater, PT, DPT
PHYSICAL THERAPIST BIO

Michelle Dearwater received her Doctorate in Physical Therapy from Columbia University in New York City. Michelle has a diverse background in business, graduating Cum Laude from San Diego State University in 2005. After changing gears and going back to school to pursue her true passion, Michelle became a Physical Therapist in order to help the lives of others. Michelle has had extensive clinical experience in orthopedics, sports rehabilitation, gait training, post-operative care, and neurorehabilitation. While attending PT school, Michelle volunteered at several pro bono clinics throughout the city. In addition, she completed research to improve functional activities for persons with spinal cord injuries using specialized training in aerobics, strength conditioning and manually resisted balance techniques. During her former education, Michelle lived and studied in Singapore and had the opportunity to travel throughout South East Asia. Michelle was first introduced to PT as a varsity soccer player with an ACL injury and had her own journey to recovery. Michelle lives an active lifestyle, loves to travel, be outdoors and enjoys adventure. Always a sports fan, she loves an opportunity for a good game and enjoys friendly competition.

Lisa Yirce, PT, DPT

Doctor of Physical Therapy

imgLisa Yirce, PT, DPT
PHYSICAL THERAPIST BIO

Lisa Yirce is the Clinical Director of SPEAR’s Chelsea location. She graduated summa cum laude with a Doctorate in Physical Therapy and a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from Stony Brook University. Lisa has extensive clinical experience in sports medicine orthopedics, post-operative rehabilitation, manual therapy, and functional training techniques. She enjoys treating a diverse patient population and is dedicated to providing the highest quality of care through an individualized approach. Lisa leads an active lifestyle and has participated in many sports throughout her life, such as track and field, basketball, volleyball, and tennis. Lisa first found her passion for physical therapy after suffering from an injury herself while running and then undergoing the rehabilitation process first hand. These experiences strengthened her ability to empathize with her patients and to truly relate to their needs when guiding them back to the activities that they love. Lisa was born and raised in New York. She loves exploring the city’s diverse cuisine, spending time with family and friends, and going to concerts and sporting events. Lisa stays active by running and strength training.

David Block, PT, DPT

Doctor of Physical Therapy

imgDavid Block, PT, DPT
PHYSICAL THERAPIST BIO

David Block is the Clinical Director of SPEAR’s Penn Plaza location. He earned his Doctorate in Physical Therapy with distinction from the New York Institute of Technology. While at NYIT, David received the Benjamin Morey Commitment to Excellence Award and the Alpha Eta Student Research Award. His graduate research study, entitled “Can the Substitution of Shoulder Internal Rotation for External Rotation during ULNT3 Evoke a Comparable Neurodynamic Response in Embalmed Cadavers?” was published in the Journal of Manual and Manipulative Therapy in 2015. David has taken a special interest in treating cases involving pathology of the spine and is currently studying with the McKenzie Institute in pursuit of achieving a Certification in Mechanical Diagnosis and Treatment (MDT) of spinal disorders. He also enjoys treating a variety of orthopedic conditions and places an emphasis on manual therapy. David grew up on Long Island, NY, and enjoyed playing soccer, hockey, and tennis both competitively and for leisure. He is an active member of the United States Tennis Association and is currently ranked as a 4.0.. In David’s free time, he enjoys reading, listening to music and hanging with his dog.

Alexander Zhao, PT, DPT

PT, DPT

imgAlexander Zhao, PT, DPT
PHYSICAL THERAPIST BIO

Alex earned his Doctorate of Physical Therapy at the University of Delaware, where he also received his Master’s degree in Anatomy and Clinical Health Science. Prior to graduate school, Alex attended The College of New Jersey where he received his Bachelor of Science in biology with a minor in economics. Through various clinical affiliations, Alex has had the opportunity to work with patients across the continuum of care including acute care, acute rehab, outpatient neurology & geriatrics, and outpatient sports & orthopedics. These experiences have given Alex a better understanding of functional movement and the rehabilitation process, particularly for his post-operative orthopedic patients. Clinically, Alex enjoys treating various sports & orthopedic injuries and has taken a special interest in manual therapy, especially for the spine. In the future he plans to pursue advanced certifications in manual therapy, as well as become a board certified Orthopedic Clinical Specialist. Alex grew up in northern New Jersey and has enjoyed playing sports all his life, including competitive tennis, recreational soccer, basketball and volleyball. His hobbies also include fitness, hiking, photography, playing the saxophone, and trying new foods and restaurants.

Gabriella Marinaccio, PT, DPT

PT, DPT

imgGabriella Marinaccio, PT, DPT
PHYSICAL THERAPIST BIO

Gabriella earned her Bachelor’s degree in Biology at Arcadia University, where she went on to receive her Doctorate of Physical Therapy. Through her clinical education, she gained experience in the outpatient orthopedic setting with a special interest in athletes. Outside of academics, Gabriella was a member of the women’s basketball team at Arcadia and later went on to be a graduate assistant strength and conditioning coach for the university’s 19 varsity teams. During her time in the Physical Therapy program, Gabriella completed a research project with members of the sports medicine team at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia regarding return to play standards in pediatric athletes. The project was selected as a poster by the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA), and Gabriella was invited to present on it at the Combined Sections Meeting in 2019. Gabriella believes in forming positive relationships and creating individualized treatment plans to help each patient reach his or her goals. In her free time, Gabriella loves to stay active by running and lifting weights. She also enjoys watching college basketball, cooking/baking, and spending time with her friends and family.

Thomas Barcia, PT, DPT, ATC

PT, DPT, ATC

imgThomas Barcia, PT, DPT, ATC
PHYSICAL THERAPIST BIO

Thomas Barcia earned his Doctorate in Physical Therapy and Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training from Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, CT. Tom’s clinical experience includes orthopedics, chronic pain management, sports rehabilitation, acute rehabilitation, and neurological rehabilitation. Tom had the opportunity to train with a manual fellow during his orthopedic rotation, which allowed him to further enhance his manual therapy skills and techniques. Aside from physical therapy, Tom has experience working as an athletic trainer covering a wide variety of sporting events from youth to adult leagues. During his undergraduate he gained experience working with the Women’s and Men’s Division 1 athletes at Sacred Heart in the prevention, acute care management and rehabilitation of injuries. Tom enjoys treating various orthopedic and sports injuries for those of all ages. He values a holistic approach and prides himself in making relationships that go beyond a pathology in getting to know each one of his patients. He enjoys taking post-graduate continuing education courses to further enhance his ability to use evidence-based practice into the treatment of neuromusculoskeletal injuries. Tom enjoys helping others to live optimally, reach their goals, and improve their overall health and wellness. Tom grew up in Somers, NY, and enjoyed playing baseball, football, and basketball. In his free time, he enjoys staying active by playing sports, weight lifting, spending time with family and friends and traveling.

CANCELLATION POLICY

We kindly ask that you notify us no later than 24 hours in advance for all rescheduling and cancellations. Thank you.

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