Meet Dr. Heather K. North PT, DPT. She is the founder and owner of Red Hammer Rehab and coaches through Revolution Running. After graduating with a doctorate in physical therapy from the University of Colorado, she worked for five years as a lead physical therapist at In Motion Rehabilitation in Boulder, CO which specialized in sports-related orthopedic therapy. While there, Heather was awarded “best sports medicine doctor” in the mountain/west region of the United States by Competitor Magazine. Heather stepped out on her own and established her own practice – Red Hammer Rehab which has won “best sports medicine rehab facility” and “best sports medicine doctor” four years running.
Red Hammer Rehab is all about professionalism, evidence-based treatment, manual therapy focused care, and getting to the root cause of injuries. They treat all ages and types of individuals no matter if you just want to be able to walk with your grand kids or if you are training for the next Olympic Games.
Heather is also a key component of Revolution Running, a running training club for all abilities who want to improve, meet others, and have fun in a coached group training environment. It is headed by her and husband, Ewen.
Thank you, Heather, for keeping our bodies moving and your love for Louisville.
Q: What inspired you or led you to your current career?
A: My game plan was basically to become an orthopedic surgeon. After spending some time shadowing people and orthopedic surgeon friends, I began to question and think think about what my profession was going to look like. Years after undergrad, I considered everything from veterinary medicine to architecture to engineering and ended up interviewing with a professor at CU in their Integrated Physiology Department and was going to get my PhD. He encouraged me to talk to their program advisor and she had me do some shadowing and I was sold. I enjoy working with people, I love medicine, I love mechanics, I love to be creative, but I also want to have a healthy work life balance.
Q: What is your favorite restaurant in Louisville, and what do you love there?
A: There’s two. First, we adore Busaba Thai Restaurant, it’s incredible, it’s fresh, they have vegan options, it’s flavorful and you can dine in or take out. Our second is, 12 Degree Brewing downtown. They have good beer, really creative, excellent food, really awesome atmosphere and great service.
Q: How long have you lived or worked in Louisville?
A: Since 2008, so 12 years.
Q: Who is the most interesting person you’ve met here in Louisville?
A: I probably would have to say it is one of our patients. He is an individual in his 80’s, he’s super fit, great personality, he still does part time work as a physician, and he races every weekend. He’s inspiring and that’s exactly what I want my life to look like when I get older.
Q: If you could travel anywhere in the world right now, where would it be? And why?
A: New Zealand. I’ve never been there and I heard it’s amazing. I love going to places that have beauty and the outdoors. Alaska would be a close second.
Q: What is your favorite movie OR what is the first movie you remember seeing in a theatre?
A: Rain Man, but before that, which I even don’t want to say because it’s super embarrassing, the Last Unicorn. E.T would have been my first movie seen in a theater but my all-time favorite is Rain Man.
Q: What advice would you give a crowd of people?
A: As long as you work hard and you’re a good person a lot of good comes back to you. And that’s what I think life is all about. Work hard, be a good person, do your best and treat others how you wanted to be treated. We need more kindness in the world.
Q: What is something on your bucket list?
A: Definitely on my bucket list is the Leadville 100. But, I think non-athletically based, my bucket list is to travel more, as we were talking about New Zealand and Alaska, and making sure that our life is not all about just work and running. And maybe sky diving, that is definitely on my bucket list. I feel like it’s a safe thrill!
Q: What is your favorite music/ 3 bands you would like to see (dead or alive)?
A: I really enjoyed U2, that was an amazing concert and they’re incredible. And I’m a really big Coldplay fan, I’ve also enjoyed their concerts. Kygo is my absolute favorite, but I would love to see Madonna in concert and I always wished that I had seen Michael Jackson.
Q: What current / former local business makes you the most nostalgic about Louisville?
A: I forgot the name, but there’s a little gift shop just next to the Mudslingers. I loved that store, it was a perfect place to get gifts for people, had local artists, and the owners were kind and friendly. And then, Davidson Mesa trail head, iconic location in this entire area, beautiful sunsets and sunrises, and great running trail. Also, one of the most nostalgic places and the very first restaurant we went to when we moved here was the Huckleberry and it was a nice and “homey” dinner after moving in.
Q: Choosing anyone alive with whom would you love to have lunch? Why and where would you have lunch?
A: My dad, I know that’s really cheesy, but he’s someone that I’ve looked up to my entire life, he taught me my values, my work ethics, he’s kind and thoughtful at every turn. I know my dad loves Indian buffets, so it will either be in Tibet’s or Taj Mahal at South Boulder.
Q: What is your favorite thing or something unique about Louisville?
A: I think that Louisville has a wonderful balance and that is actually the big reason we’ve enjoyed living here. They have an amazing balance between maintaining some of their very genuine downtown feel that I think they have to be careful protecting. They have wonderful trails and it’s kind of bordered by open space on the North, East, West and South. Also, I feel like people here are pretty real, family-oriented and genuine. It’s a quaint, wonderful community that has maintained its history.
Q: Where do you see yourself in 5 or 10 years?
A: We still see ourselves here. Hopefully, hiring another physical therapist and having both our businesses (referring to husband Ewen) based here in Louisville. And little more down time to travel.
Q: (Even for friends or family), what is something interesting that most people don’t know about you?
A: Most people do not know that we love going to techno concerts to hear house music and trance music. We really enjoy it. Yet, I am actually a pretty quiet person and enjoy being in nature with a little more introspective.
Q: What 3 words or phrases come to mind when you think of the word HOME?
A: Safe, Comfortable and Warmth.
Q: If you had a full time staff member that was fully paid for, who would you choose? Chef, Housekeeper, Driver, Coach, Physical Fitness Trainer, or Nanny?
A: It would be absolutely amazing to have a personal cook and I would love Chef Charity Morgan to cook for us. My husband and I have been plant based for 4 1/2 years and cooking is a lot, especially when you have two small businesses and you end up getting take out or not eating as healthy as you should.
Q: If you were cast into a major motion picture and had your choice of anyone to be your co-star, who would you choose?
A: Brad Pitt of course! He’s just amazing and a really good actor. I’m also loving Joaquin Phoenix right now, he’s just a very inspiring actor. I suck at acting ,so I need to be with someone that did a good job to balance out my not doing a good job.