Back home & giving ‘Maximum’ effort

By Kevin Canessa Jr. 

Observer Correspondent

NORTH ARLINGTON – 

It’s one thing when a brother and sister get on very well. It’s even more unique, perhaps, when they go to college for the same major and then open a business together.

And that’s exactly what happened with Paige and James Van Dien, both North Arlington natives and co-owners of Maximum Performance Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation Center.

Both Van Diens got their master’s degrees in physical therapy from Misericordia University in Dallas, Pa. It all happened by chance, Paige says, that the duo shared a mutual love for physical therapy. After getting their graduate degrees, they both went on to practice their craft at various venues.

But their dream was to open their own PT business — and that’s exactly what they did in January 2013.

“It was something James and I wanted to do for a while,” Paige said. “Having worked at other facilities, we knew what we liked, what we didn’t like, and so we finally decided we had nothing to lose since we’re both still young. We looked around at different locations, and ultimately decided that because we’re originally from North Arlington, that this would be a great place to settle the business.

“This is our town, so it all worked out well.”

Indeed it did.

When they first opened the business, the Van Diens made arrangements with numerous local doctors who deal with patients in need of PT and rehabilitation. They’d take them out to lunch, explain what they had to offer — and ask the doctors to give them a chance by referring patients.

And from there, the rest is history.

Maximum Performance’s clientele has grown exponentially since January 2013.

But it hasn’t just been physician referrals that have helped.

“Since we’re from North Arlington, we do know a lot of people — and a lot of people know our family,” Paige said. “So with that and through word of mouth, we’ve grown nicely.”

Typically, for insurance purposes, patients who need PT and rehab are written prescriptions by their doctors, who then refer them to a PT center. Paige says it’s surprising how many insurance policies actually cover physical therapy.

“That’s why we always tell our patients to call us first with insurance information so our receptionist can verify what is or isn’t covered,” she said. “But we will work with patients whose insurance doesn’t cover physical therapy — or with patients who are uninsured.”

When finances are a challenge, there’s little to worry about. They’ll work with you on a payment plan if that’s a needed option.

So what are the injuries most commonly seen at Maximum Performance?

“We definitely see a lot of orthopedic injuries,” Paige said. “From muscle sprains, to joint sprains, to post-op care, back and neck surgeries from injuries and spinal injuries, we do see a variety.”

Many of the patients are also athletes, Paige said. And not too long ago, she treated a fairly well-known athlete in this neck of the woods.

“We’ve taped Brandon Jacobs, [formerly] of the New York Giants prior to his games,” Paige said. “It was great having him here.”

Not all physical therapy and rehabilitation centers are alike, Paige says, and what sets Maximum Performance apart is this: “When you’re with us, you’ll only deal with us — my brother or me — and never an aide. In many other practices, a patient will work with a therapist for around 10 minutes, and then get handed off to an aide. Here, that never happens. We never pass anyone off. For around 30 minutes, you’ll work with us and us alone.”

So it’s the personal attention and care that stands out. “It means there are long hours, but it’s well worth it,” she said. “Whether it’s a young child, or a 95-year-old person, we want our clients to get only the very best.”

Only the very best, indeed. Maximum Performance Physical Therapy & Sports Rehabilitation is located at 170 Schuyler Ave., Suite 3, North Arlington. Hours of operation are: Monday and Wednesday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Tuesday and Thursday, 2 to 8 p.m.; and Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Find out more about the practice by visiting www.Maximum Performance Physical Therapy.com at any time or by calling 201-991- 3800 during business hours.

The Observer Staff