The Vital Team

Founders of The Vital Stretch

About Missy and Rob,
the founders of The Vital Stretch®

We have been in the healthcare- field for a very long time. Our patients seek us out as “seasoned practitioners” well-known as active members of our Norwalk community. Together, over a combined timeframe of over 50+ years, we’ve actively helped thousands of people regain their health at our multi-disciplinary practice, Advanced Health Professionals, or AHP, as our patients have coined us.

 

We continue to be hands-on and treat our patients with some of the very same methods we utilize with our Vital Stretch clients. Treating injuries as a Physical Therapist and Chiropractor provides us with the expertise and understanding of how the body responds to different stretching techniques depending on the person’s goals. We call this knowledge “The Vital Stretch Method.” It is the foundation for the certification required by all Vital Stretch Certified Stretch Practitioners we employ.

We love our “Vital Stretch Method” because it has helped us as we age. The Vital Stretch Method keeps us fit and ready to tackle our busy lifestyle and physically demanding jobs. It allows us to stretch out our feeling of youthfulness with the best recovery techniques available.

The Vital Stretch Founders

The Vital Stretch® was born for going back to some of the basic concepts of movement and elongation. With our appreciation of the body’s interactive kinetic chain and our passion for helping people recover from injury and feel better, we have put together a superior method for anybody out there – young, middle-aged, and senior alike! Assisted stretching is beneficial and feels great to anyone! We love how our combination of both progressive and straightforward hands-on techniques will make you feel both relaxed and re-energized when you get off our Vital Stretch table! 

The 'Vital' Team

Evan Bonenfant

EVAN
(Head CSP & Team Lead)

I learned the importance of stretching at a young age when I was competing in track - Stretching was the only relief I found to help me in recovery from my workouts. I now take the approach of "Our bodies need to be in motion".

Since becoming a Licensed Massage Therapist and being involved with the Rehabilitation and Physical Therapy team at Advanced Health Professionals, I've learned a lot about the body and how the healing process occurs following an injury. With my PREP certification (Post Rehab Exercise Program), I have incorporated continuous movement and the significance of whole-body exercise to maximize the therapeutic impact on wellness.

When Rob and Missy approached me about helping them with The Vital Stretch®, it was simply a no-brainer to jump on board! I'm thrilled to continue to dedicate my life's work to get people feeling better by employing stretching and getting people to move!

DIMITRI

Growing up, I've always been an advocate of health and fitness. I was drawn to fitness early in life. Being physically active at a young age allowed me to see all the positive transformations of being healthy. I quickly developed a passion for helping others engage in healthier lifestyles.

After obtaining my bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science, and my Personal Training certification with ACSM, I took action and helped motivate people to discover their best selves through fitness.

My first encounter with the Vital Stretch team was at a 5k event where I tried a demo stretch. I was hooked! Both Rob and Missy gave me a phenomenal stretching experience. They explained the specialized and unique techniques they use to make their stretching sessions more efficient and longer-lasting. I was immediately interested in joining the team. After becoming a TVS Certified Stretch Practitioner, I'm always excited to share my experiences and skills, as well as bringing a safe, effective and enjoyable experience to TVS clients.

KADEEM

Flexibility and recovery were some of the first concepts I learned when competing in Folkstyle wrestling in high school. We needed to be flexible to get out submissions, and we needed to learn how to recover after complex practices. These concepts were drilled into my mind and shaped how I approach workouts and overall recovery.

Since becoming an ACSM [American College of Sports Medicine] Personal Trainer, I’ve been continuously learning about the human body. I’ve been analyzing motions in sports and daily activities to help others meet their health and wellness goals. Becoming a Certified Stretch Practitioner at The Vital Stretch® with Missy and Rob was the best choice in furthering my goal!

ISAIAS

Health and wellness has always been a big part of my life. At the age of 11 I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Since then, the doctor told me being physically active was going to help regulate my blood glucose levels. I immediately joined the local youth football team in my town. Throughout high school I played football and ran track and field. Powerlifting was another component of being on the football team. With lifting , running, and playing a contact sport, I found the need to stretch before and after my sporting events. Recovery was a crucial part to my performance.

Having an athletic background made picking a major in college easy to narrow down. With exercise and wellness being my passion, exercise science was my first choice and I fell in love with the program since the start. I graduated from Norwalk Community College with an associates degree in exercise science. In the fall of 2021, I will continue my education at Southern Connecticut State University to receive my Bachelors Degree in Exercise Science.

To this day I continue to be physically active. Stretching is something I incorporate in my daily routine. When Rob and Missy introduced me to The Vital Stretch, it changed the way I see stretching. When I received my first stretch, I felt the difference in my body immediately. To be able to make the difference in people’s daily lives with The Vital Stretches techniques, brings me satisfaction assisting people in bettering their body. Being a part of The Vital Stretch team allows me to continue my passion in health and wellness.

ABLE

As a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Practitioner of 5 years, my body has been built up and worn down from constant sparring and one of the key things that has enhanced my performance as well as aided in my recovery has been to stretch before, during, and after a session, especially since my flexibility is one of my major physical attributes that gives me an edge while sparring.

Joining The Vital Stretch team has allowed me to become more hands on and personal and obtain some necessary experience that I need to achieve my goal of becoming a physical therapist, while still allowing me to finish obtaining my bachelor's degree in exercise science.

My role as a certified stretch practitioner allows me to provide relief to a whole variety of people who come from a lot of different athletic and sedentary backgrounds. There is no better feeling than being able to alleviate any stiffness, tightness or pain from an individual's body, using our certified stretching techniques.

YASMIN

As a CSP [Certified Stretch Practitioner], my drive is to bring overall wellness to your body not only through assisted stretching but with positivity, encouragement, and my passion for helping others. And in my personal life, running after my daughter has become a breeze after incorporating stretching into my day-to-day life.

When I was approached to be a part of The Vital Stretch® team, it was an absolute honor. Being a NASM [National Academy of Sports Medicine™] Certified Personal Trainer and running my own group exercise classes has helped tremendously in executing our highly successful Vital Stretch Classes and programs. The human body is a unique thing, and we only get one, so it’s our job to take good care of it.

SARA

I try to find balance in my life, and stretching is a huge part of keeping myself in check! As a former gymnast, I understand the importance of stretching as both a preparation and recovery tool. It also made me understand the benefits my clients realize when I assist in deepening their stretches.

Joining The Vital Stretch® team taught me to take a more client-directed approach to the muscles I learned about while getting my Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology.

When I can take the time out of my day to do even just one healthy activity such as stretching, I feel that much more accomplished in my own wellness! I love that my position as a Certified Stretch Practitioner allows me to help people on their road to whatever their wellness goals may be!

KAITLYN

I've always been an active individual. I've learned that to keep up with my workouts, I must stretch before and after every workout. Stretching allows me to have proper form, prevent an injury, and have a better recovery, which I strive to pass along to my clients when creating new goals and healthier lifestyle habits for them.

After obtaining my Masters in Exercise & Sports Science and working in the Rehabilitation Department of Advanced Health Professionals as a Physical Therapy Aid, I've gained a better understanding of the human body when injured and the steps needed to begin the healing process. I am also a NASM Certified Personal Trainer, which has allowed me to be a better fitness professional with increased knowledge of body mechanics and movements.

When Rob and Missy approached me about becoming a Certified Stretch Practitioner for The Vital Stretch® team, I knew it was an opportunity that I couldn't pass up. In my role as a CSP, I'm able to bring more balance into each individual's sessions when they are being stretched, along with creating a sense of comfort and relaxation for them.

Nicole Rabe - Events & Communications Coordinator

Taking care of my overall health and wellbeing has always been a priority of mine. From high school sports to HITT classes, I have learned the importance of stretching. Whether it be stretching before or after a workout, I always feel better knowing I am keeping my body healthy and strong.

I am looking forward to bringing my skill set from previous events and marketing experiences into this new venture. Understanding the importance surrounding the recovery benefits of the Vital Stretch Method has been transformative to my goals of spreading the TVS mission of health and wellness throughout the greater Norwalk community.

As the Events and Communications Coordinator, I am excited to introduce others to this lifestyle. My goal is to expose as many people to The Vital Stretch as possible. I want nothing more than for others to understand the importance of Assisted Stretching and reap the life-changing benefits.

Nathaly Hernandez - Studio Manager

As the new studio manager for The Vital Stretch, I could not be more excited to be a part of the team and connect with our clients. Wellness has truly become a passion of mine.

Growing up I did dance and boxing as my main form of exercise and during college I began to incorporate distinct styles of movement like; spinning, Pilates and yoga. After finishing my studies I was fortunate enough to take part in a yoga teacher training that highlighted the importance of the mind, body and soul connection.

With all forms of conscious movement stretching is vital for the muscles and to maintain flexibility in the joints. Working at The Vital Stretch is very fitting to say the least, because it goes hand in hand with my lifestyle and wellness journey. As The Vital Stretch continues to flourish by revolutionizing the health industry, it is a great pleasure to stand alongside the team and contribute my skills.