(This article originally came out on The Mindanao Post last October 2022. I just added a few inputs)

These days, therapy has a whole new meaning: retail therapy, weekend staycations, out-of-town trips, milk tea or coffee dates, and traveling are just a few of them. What’s missing from the list is the kind of therapy that many of us actually need but often forget or prefer to forget – physical therapy.

Mind you, physical therapy is not only for those who are injured or recovering from an illness or surgery. Physical therapy is for anyone who spends most of the week working 9-to-5 jobs. It is for those who are constantly trying to beat deadlines in school and at work. It is for the homemaker, the mother, the dad, the online worker, the sports buff. It is for anyone who wants to move without pain or improve their range of motion.

You do not have to be injured or sick to need a physical therapy session; you only need to listen to your muscles when you stretch, your knees when you’ve been standing or sitting down too long, and your back when you’ve been working on your desk for eight hours.

Miss Cagayan de Oro 2017 1st runner-up Meg Cui Bacareza knows all these, so she decided to open a place where everyone can experience therapy that’s more efficient and effective than any shopping spree or food fiesta you’ve ever had.

Last October 08, 2022, Meg opened the doors of Phyx Rehab Physiotherapy Services to Kagay-anons. Located along Osmeña Extension, Phyx is the place to go to if you need physical therapy service of any kind. It’s where you’ll find first-rate therapy that will allow you to move, recover, and improve.

Phyx is a dream, a goal that took years to accomplish, born out of Meg’s passion and determination to serve and give back to others. There were some struggles and challenges along the way, but it made the journey better and the destination sweeter for Meg.

To give us an idea of what Phyx is and how she achieved her ultimate passion and goal, Meg agreed to answer a few questions.

1. What is Phyx all about?

Phyx Rehab Physiotherapy Services is a facility that caters to clients and patients who seek physical therapy services. I combined conventional and new approaches, like IASTM or Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization, in treating clients. We aim to add value by decreasing pain, proper recovery of muscles, and improving the range of motion and performance. Hence the tag line move, recover, improve.

2. How did you come up with the idea of opening a physiotherapy facility? Was it a long-time dream?

I had this dream ever since I decided to pursue physical therapy. I didn’t settle for my dream to just be a dream, I made it a goal. This was nine long years in the making.

Despite giving my all and having this as the ultimate goal, I had to experience a lot of rejections, doubts, failures, and uncertainties. My pops taught me that life is for service; service to man is service to God. My mamakins taught me to be compassionate to those who need me. I grew up knowing my purpose is to serve. And what better way to do so than through my profession? Imagine being able to help clients and patients move again, to do the things they love again. I always knew my purpose was to add value to the quality of life of whoever I encountered – in any way possible.

3. Did little Meg see herself opening something like Phyx in the future? What did little Meg want to become when she grew up?

I remember the apos (grandchildren) had to line up, and we were always asked one by one what we wanted to be when we grew up. I’d always answer “to have my own charity and foundation”. Although my heart was in the right place, I can’t give what I don’t have. It needs to overflow – financially speaking. So I thought the best thing I could do is to utilize who I am, what I am, what I have, and where I’m at. Little Meg had 3 whys: to help others, to be financially stable, and to be able to travel. Hence, the personal outreach programs and my willingness to serve through my new venture – Phyx Rehab.

4. Tell us about your sandwich-selling days in school.

I had a lot of small businesses in college. But I have always had an entrepreneurial spirit.

I’m an unica hija and middle child. I have two siblings. I grew up thinking that since I’m still young and unemployed, the least I can do to help my parents is to take good care of myself so they’d have one less kid to worry about.

I’ve always been independent and wanted to move out at a young age – and have my own money. So in elementary, I sold bumpy stickers and scented erasers to my classmates. In high school, I sold accessories and other stuff. 

In college, I had beachplease.ph (crochet bikini tops), The Cactus Project by Meg, and even Lamps and Scents by Eve and Eli (humidifiers and pure citronella oil from our farm) – on top of going to events, hosting stints, and pageants.

I always brought baon (food to eat in school) because I’m always hungry. Hahahaha! My mamakins prepared gourmet sandwiches for me. And I shared my snacks with my classmates. If there’s one thing that I’m known for since elementary, it’s that I share my snacks, yellow paper, and pens with others. We shared my sandwich as well (no COVID at that time yet!). It didn’t matter that in the end, I ate only a little because I shared it with a lot of people. I’d end up buying snacks at the canteen even if I brought baon! Hahahaha!

That was when I decided to sell the sandwiches that my mama made for me. We made gourmet sandwiches, so they had lettuce and tomatoes aside from our mother-daughter spread recipe. It was also my way of encouraging friends to eat veggies. I’d sell it before or after anatomy class, so before we dissected a cadaver, my classmates were already full! Even my professors bought my gourmet sandwiches. I did anything that I could to save more money. My parents did not give me extra money and I didn’t want to be a burden to them, so I needed to provide for myself.

5. What are your plans for Phyx? Any events, special offers, or activities?

I will be giving random discounts to athletes who join triathlons, spartan races, trekking events, and the like. It is my way of promoting not only the rehab facility but the need for the PT practice as well. And to inspire people to get up and get moving, too.

6. How would you “sell” Phyx to the younger generation?

I am pushing for “pre-hab” or preventive rehab. You are never the same once you get injured. So before you do (God forbid!), we will treat you for proper muscle recovery and the like. Prevention is better than cure. Always.

7. How important is Phyx to you?

Phyx is my way of serving the Kagay-anons.

I was about to move to Mnl to be with my family. But I chose to stay in my hometown to put up my ultimate dream. I had the opportunity to study abroad and work in a different country, but I chose to push through with my ultimate goal. And I’m glad I did.

My goal now is to educate and show people what physical therapists do and what PT is all about, and to serve those who need me as well.

8. Any advice for those who want to follow the path you have taken/are taking?

There is no concrete path. The world is a vast arena and life is a journey you have to go through. You are never “too young” or “too old” to discover what you are called to do. You are not in competition with anyone. We all have our own timelines. Compete with who you used to be.

Pops kept reminding my bros and I to BELIEVE.

Make sure you are reminded of your WHY – and be firm with your purpose. Eyes on the goal but be flexible with your ways.

The challenges in front of you aren’t there to stop you but for you to know how badly you want to fulfill your goals and dreams. They are there to fuel you. Pursue whatever sets your soul on fire. Pursue with perseverance, grit, and faith. Padayon (carry on)!

May Meg’s inspiring outlook in life, her passion for service, and her journey to Phyx inspire you to pursue your dreams and keep working on fulfilling your goals.

In the meantime, check out Phyx Rehab on Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/phyxrehab, or send them an email through phyxrehab@gmail.com. You may also get in touch with them by calling or sending a message to 0926-1721008.

Phyx Rehab Physiotherapy Services is located at #14 Emeteria Bldg, Osmeña Extension.

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