Monday, May 6, 2019

Orthopaedics Plus is Now Open at 54 Middlesex Turnpike

Orthopaedics Plus opened earlier this year at 54 Middlesex Turnpike. The clinic, which moved from Burlington also has a location in Beverly. I recently spoke with Dr. Justin Pezick and Dr. Mike Stare who are the current owners of Orthopaedics Plus.

Orthopaedics Plus was formed in 1986 by Al Visnick, Bill Antonelli and Vinny Buscemi. A second location opened in Burlington a few years later. Mike joined Orthopaedics Plus in 2006 as a Physical Therapist in Beverly and shortly thereafter founded Spectrum Fitness Consulting. Orthopaedics Plus and Spectrum Fitness partnered together with adjacent spaces in Beverly. About 90% of Spectrum's original clients were former patients at Orthopaedics Plus. Justin joined Orthopaedics Plus in 2015 as a clinician in the Burlington office and quickly became very interested in a management role. Mike and Justin decided they complemented each other very well, and decided to purchase the business. They officially took ownership on January 1st 2018. The previous owners still work for the company as Clinicians.

Last year, their lease of 2,000 square feet in Burlington was coming up for renewal and they thought it would be a good time to move, as there was no easy way to expand in their existing building. Their first step was to survey their customers about moving. They got strong feedback that staying nearby was important (most of their client base lives nearby with about 10-15% who live much further away but work in the area). Both Justin and Mike met with many local building owners in Burlington, Lexington and Bedford to explain their vision of where they wanted to go with Orthopaedics Plus. They realized that most of the building owners wanted to take their vision and attempt to incorporate it in to their currently available spaces which did not work well. They then met with Kevin Curran, the owner of 54 Middlesex Turnpike (which was undergoing a total renovation). They were excited that Kevin was able to understand their vision and told them he would work with them to build out a space around their vision rather than try to shoe horn it in to an existing space. They went ahead and signed the lease.

All the equipment is new and the main treatment area  is much larger than their previous location in Burlington.

Build out started in 2018 and they moved in to their new space in January of this year. The new facility is almost three times the size at 5800 square feet. With the move, they decided to open a Bedford location of Spectrum Fitness inside of Orthopaedics Plus. Both Mike and Justin thought it made sense to combine the physical therapy and fitness facility. Justin explained how they tend to cross promote each other (clients getting physical therapy frequently want to get in better shape and fitness clients frequently need help with injuries or related issues). As far as the space itself, the physical therapy portion is about 4K with about 1200 square feet for Spectrum Fitness and the rest of the space is divided up between customer reception and administrative offices.

Treatment table. The new facility is well lit and features wood flooring.
The thing they like best about their new space is the glass wall that separates the physical therapy section from Spectrum Fitness. It maintains a line of sight which provides inspiration for many physical therapy patients. Mike explained how many times the physical therapy patients are seeing people on the other side of the glass lifting weights, doing squats and more. The patients are then generally very surprised to hear that many of those people were previous on their side of the glass in physical therapy for the same exact thing they are there for. The patient will then often see the light in how much they will be able to do if they keep working at it. Both Justin and Mike revealed that this has been very fulfilling for the physical therapists themselves.

The main workout room at Spectrum Fitness features a wide variety of equipment

As part of the move, Orthopaedics Plus also upgraded their software and patient records. This enabled them to shift a lot of staff time previously spent on administrative tasks to a more patient centric focus such as following up with appointments or checking in with patients to see how they are feeling.

The new space is very open and has lots of windows.
Spectrum Fitness focuses on both nutrition and strengthening exercises. Mike explained how it's important to tailor the program to the specific needs and abilities of the client. So they provide a free one hour assessment to prospective clients. Unlike traditional gyms such as Planet Fitness, most clients don't just stop by to use the gym. Instead they attend scheduled classes or one on one personal training. Because of this, Spectrum only offers a 6, 12 or 18 months commitment. The Spectrum Fitness instructors have weekly rounds where they check in with clients to see how everything is going and catch most issues before they become big problems. Justin gave an example where a fitness client twisted their ankle. Typically a person might wait a few weeks before seeing a medical professional. With rounds, the physical therapists can take a quick look right away and provide immediate advice on it. Both Justin and Mike explained how this increases the efficiency of health care.

Both companies share the common area.

Now that they are fully moved in, Justin and Mike have started to focus on reaching out to the local community. They are currently working with local Councils on Aging by providing seminars on nutrition, exercise, fall prevention and related topics. They also provide no cost seminars to nearby companies on a variety of health and wellness topics such as ergonomics and corporate wellness.

54 Middlesex Turnpike building has undergone a complete renovation. Compare the before and after. Along with Orthopaedics Plus, Barrel House Z Brewery/Restaurant is expected to open later this year.
The new facility which employs close to 25 people, is generally open from 6am to 7pm during the work week and is closed on Weekends. The formal Grand Opening with a ribbon cutting is set for May 17th.

1. Combining fitness centers to Physical Therapy practices seems to be a growing trend. In Bedford, Well Effect has also combined practices.
2. It's good to see developers work closely with tenants on a shared vision.