Howard Nelson has been a physical therapist for 28 years. He worked for ten years at Hospital for Special Surgery in NYC. Howard helped form the hospital’s Physical Therapy Outpatient Spine Center and served as its clinical supervisor. He also worked for five years in HSS’s sports medicine department. Currently he is in private practice in New York City. During 2007 to 2014 he taught a lecture/lab class on movement system impairments for Columbia University’s physical therapy program. For the past ten years Mr. Nelson has worked and studied with Washington University’s physical therapy department, developing his expertise in movement system impairments. Specifically, he analyzes how postures and movements can be the cause of injury and pain. His physical therapy practice is focused on treating the biomechanical causes of injuries by modifying faulty movement patterns.
During the last few years Mr. Nelson has been applying movement system principles to musicians. He has presented Pamela Frank’s case study and worked with musicians at festivals in Rolle and Verbier, Switzerland; Rice University, Caramoor, Chicago Music Institute, Manhattan School of Music, New England Conservatory, Curtis Institute, New World Symphony, the Tokyo Viola and Menuhin Competitions, the Tanglewood Music Center, UCLA, USC, San Francisco Conservatory of Music, Trident Medical Center, The Performing Arts Medicine Association, Yale University School of Music, and The Juilliard School.
"Fit as a Fiddle" represents the merging of many aspects of Pam’s professional life. As she travels around the world, she sees that the potential for injury in musicians of all ages is a growing cause for concern. “Because of my experience with a career-threatening injury, and my recovery — thanks to physical therapist Howard Nelson — I feel the need to describe my problem and his expertise in solving it. It is my hope that, together, we can assist a growing population of untreated individuals, as well as those at risk, to prevent problems before they become career-threatening.”
By changing lifelong habits and retraining her use of the instrument for more efficiency, Ms. Frank's playing has become freer, and she is now equipped to play safely for the rest of her life.