Claire Bowe, PT, M.Ed., Owner Physical Therapist
Claire Bowe: Owner of Rose Physical Therapy, Physical Therapist, Former Special Education Teacher, Twin Girl Mom, Avid Hiker, Bicycle Commuter, Motorcycle Enthusiast, Cancer Survivor
As owner of Rose it has always been my goal to provide a premium service and the best physical therapy care you can get. I believe in one-on-one 1-hour therapy with a physical therapist, never a technician. I take our motto, Love How You Feel very seriously. I want every interaction with Rose from start to finish to be a positive one. This includes lots of internal work at Rose to create an inclusive and welcoming environment for all genders and all bodies. For our doctors my goal is to create an environment that challenges everyone to give better care every day as we grow and evolve as clinicians. This combination is what makes Rose special: our therapists have more knowledge and enough time to really diagnose your injuries and get to the root of problems efficiently.
What Love How You Feel means to me is that as a practice we do the heavy lifting to be the best medical care you will ever receive. Personalized medicine with a doctor of physical therapy and our highly skilled and responsive office coordinator staff work together to insure great communication every step of the way. We feel the onus to be the best and strive to be so. Clients often come to us after going to other practices and "failing" physical therapy. Misdiagnosis and poor/dismissive treatment from physicians are also very common issues that we face with our clients. Traumatic treatment within the medical machine is, sadly, more common than not. We are different and better.
I have prodigious skill as a physical therapist and my learning never stops. I have been working in the world of healthcare for 29 years and as a physical therapist for 15 years. I also have a Masters in Education that afforded me the time and experience with understanding how to teach, mentor and impart knowledge and expertise to my clients and fellow clinicians. My goal is always to impart the knowledge necessary for people to be independent and to recognize the steps for prevention of future injury.
I have had the opportunity to work with every level of athlete. From professionals to serious hobbyists to casual exercisers and everything in between. I have had the opportunity to spectate and Sherpa for my husband at the Ironman World Championships in Kona, HI. With Rose I have spectated and offered recovery sessions after many of the local races and events for all types of sports from soccer tournaments, cycling races to triathlons and running races. It has given me a chance to see my clients in action, which I deeply enjoy.
Sports medicine is not my only expertise and many of my clients would not consider themselves athletes. I am the Washington DC regional expert on Temporal Mandibular Dysfunction commonly known as TMJ or TMD. I have shared my knowledge with all of our clinicians and as a result Rose is one of the few places you can come and get expert and wholistic treatment for TMJ, cervicogenic headaches, migraines, concussion and vestibular issues.
I am also certified in Mechanical Diagnosis & Therapy (MDT) by the McKenzie Institute and as an Ergonomic Assessment Specialist under the United States Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA). Issues related to low, mid back, neck pain and posture are part of my repertoire and expertise. It is also part of my foundational training and mentorship for all of our Rose clinicians. As a result, Rose is a clinic where all of our therapists can treat spine related issues with a very high level of expertise.
I have taken just about every course offered by Active Release Techniques (ART) for treatment of Ironman and other athletes. Trigger Point Dry Needling training from Myopain Seminars and a specialized sinus balloon expansion technique for treatment of TMJ and headaches/migraines are a couple of my other areas of expertise. My Master’s degree in Education focused on special education and early intervention with children who are blind or visually impaired. It's been a while, but I used to be able to read and write in Braille. I had the amazing opportunity to do my student teaching at Perkins School for the Blind, the oldest residential school for the blind in the country and where Hellen Keller and her teacher Anne Sullivan were educated.
I have been treating clients with pelvic floor dysfunction for a number of years, honing my expertise in treatment of all body parts and the body as a whole. Pre and postpartum care, pelvic pain, urinary dysfunction and much more.
Another of my specialties is working with clients who have had chest surgeries. This includes gender affirming top surgeries, both removal and augmentation post operative care. As well as breast cancer clients who have had; mastectomy, lumpectomy and/or reconstruction recovery rehabilitation.
I am a breast cancer survivor myself. I was diagnosed at age 36. I had a partial mastectomy without reconstruction followed by radiation. I had a stage 2+ tumor along with 2 smaller cancerous spots that were also removed. Chemotherapy was recommended and I declined remaining sessions after the first treatment. The cancer journey was a very difficult one. I actively asserted my own autonomy and decision making about every aspect of care and that was met with distain and resistance from most of my medical providers. It was my first real experience inside the medical machine as a client. It was not pleasant. I was threatened, yelled at, told I was going to die, patronized, diminished and so much more. I had very few positive interactions along the way. I wouldn't wish it on anyone. But at the end of it, I can say with absolute certainty that the experience was a gift. And my survival is also a gift of modern science that I do not take for granted. The experience only deepened my resolve to be the best medical provider that my own clients will interact with ever in their journey of life in receiving medical care. The critical importance of being a safe space for anyone who walks through the door became clearer than ever. To truly listen to people and work collaboratively is something that physical therapy lends itself to naturally and I felt like I was doing, but after my cancer experience I knew I had to always be working to improve and that it would be a never ending evolution for me as a clinician.
I have a B.S. from Oregon State University (Corvallis, Oregon), a Master's in Education from the Portland State University (Portland, Oregon), and a Masters in Physical Therapy from the Governors State University (Chicago, Illinois). As a fun fact, I finished all but a couple of courses in Masters of Occupational Therapy before transferring to physical therapy school. Sometimes our paths are not exactly straight, and when I discovered physical therapy I knew I had to make the jump to this field, and I never looked back!
Outside of work, I enjoys hobbies that involve two wheels and two feet. I was a long time instructor for the Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF). I enjoyed endurance riding on my 1978 Honda Goldwing and track riding on my Triumph Daytona. I am a bicycle commuter and am a member of Washington Area Bicycle Association (WABA). My partner and I live in Navy Yard with my twin daughters and two kitty cats, Knick Knack and Paddy Whack.
As a family we enjoy hiking and camping. In 2020 and 2021 combined we hiked 500+ miles. Our twin daughters were 3 and 4 years old at the time. In spite of living an active life I would not consider myself an athlete. Over the years people have expressed intimidation and hesitance at coming to Rose, thinking that we specialize in athletes and they wouldn't fit in or have a place with our therapists. I am here to say, that everyone has a place at Rose. Part of the reason I attended occupational therapy school before transferring to physical therapy as a career choice was my own intimidation, and idea that I was not an athlete and therefore I had no place in the field. I would like to dispel that myth. At Rose, come as you are, no matter who you are, we will do everything in our power to help you in your journey to wellness. We are physical therapists of prodigious skill and a great deal of empathy with the ability to adapt and meet you where ever you are in your journey to wellness.