Matt Braga Then and Now
Matt Braga became part of the Rebound family in early 2017 and has been busy settling into his new Central Oregon Lifestyle. In hopes of getting to know Matt a little better, we recently asked him to answer a series of questions. The results were earth shattering. Chances are after reading this, you’ll want to go play 36 holes with and grab a couple brews.
Rebound: Physical Therapy seems like a pretty great career, how did you end up on that path?
Matt Braga: “I knew early on I wanted to be in the medical world, but didn’t have the interest to be an MD and connected to a pager as my uncle was an Orthodontist and (I) observed him leaving Thanksgiving dinner multiple times to treat patients. (ironically, I now find myself wearing a pager at Cushing). I’d been involved in sports my entire life and enjoyed helping people. PT also fulfilled my desire to work with my hands. Two years as a Student Athletic Trainer for University of Washington confirmed that PT was the path for me.”
R:Now at Rebound what has impressed you with the PT ‘scene’ here in Bend and how the community really seems to realize its importance?
MB: “It is nice to work with a patient population that is motivated and respects what we have to offer. As for Rebound, I am continuously impressed with the caliber of clinician they are able to recruit. The Cushing environment is fantastic with great camaraderie.”
R: If you had gone down another path, say, professional athlete, what sport would you pic and why?
MB: “I’d be a professional golfer! It is a sport that comes natural to me and some may say I’m a bit of a [“golf slut!”] “
R: Say you broke both legs and were on the couch and on a Netflix binge, what would we find you watching?
MB: “Surfing through interesting documentaries, then onto The Americans and with my wife present, Orange is the New Black.”
R: That one song that brings you back to one of the greatest moments/times of your life?
MB: “Poison by Bell, Biv, Devoe!!! Takes me back to senior year of highschool when life included beach volleyball, golf, beer and buddies.”
R: Do you have a great comeback story from an injured patient that you would be willing to share?
MB: “I initially evaluated a cyclist in the hospital who had been hit by a car in Grand Teton National Park. Injuries included multiple pelvic fractures, large hematoma through his hip, open lacerations, broken ribs, fractured scapula and a crush injury to his L forearm. Treating him in those acute days was the most pain I’ve ever had to inflict on a patient, but through that we built our bond as he quickly realized I was his ticket out of the hospital and hopefully back on his bike. Our torture sessions continued in the OP clinic after he had surgery to his forearm and able to be wheeled into the clinic. I then observed a second surgery he had to his forearm which grafted muscles into different functions as the initial nerve damage was not responding to treatment. After all was said and done, he was walking to his PT appointments and competed in the annual 186 mile ride from Logan, UT to Jackson, WY.”
R: Summer bucket list of items here in Bend?
MB: “Explore the mountain bike trails, do some family camping, get to the coast and wine country, swim in a few lakes.”
R: Favorite place to unwind here in town, a lake, trail, etc?
MB: “With a 2 yr old, that spot has become the couch with Netflix . Craving the river on a SUP, but enjoying the River Trail and Shevlin Park.”
R: Anything else you would like to add?
MB: “I recently had the pleasure of celebrating my parents 50th wedding anniversary which included 10 of us going to Barcelona to visit my wife and mother-in-laws family. My wife and I are excited to welcome our 2nd child into the world this November!”
Extending a huge congrats to Matt and his growing family, so excited to have them as part of the RPT crew, and hurray for a new WEE-bound-er!