Laura Bunso, PT, MTCPT, MTC
After beginning her career at Mayo Clinic in outpatient orthopedics and leading the rehabilitation department in the area of Women’s Health, Laura branched out and established Smart Body Physical Therapy in 2004, pioneering the way for a practice with a hands-on approach that specializes in pelvic health, spine and manual therapy.
She first earned her Bachelor’s degree from Jacksonville University with a major in Biology and minors in Chemistry and Psychology. She earned her Masters degree in Physical Therapy from another private university, the University of St. Augustine, in January 1999. Furthering her manual therapy skills (or hands on treatment of soft tissue and joint mobilization), she received her Manual Therapy Certification (MTC), just a couple of years later.
Laura has specialized in the area of pelvic health, women’s and men’s health and spine since 1999. Her love for helping people suffering in these areas comes out of an unwillingness to accept the status quo and she often finds herself treating people with impairments they never thought possible to improve. Her approach to her clinical practice makes it obvious that she believes our bodies are brimming with life and potential. According to Laura, “There’s nothing that makes me happier than getting to see someone truly savor their life. It’s not just a tag line for our patients and our staff, it gets me out of the bed every morning to press forward helping those around me flourish into the best versions of themselves.”
Laura is doing her best to get the most out of her own life! When she’s not at the office treating patients, she loves to spend her time with her 3 children, exercising, fishing or outdoors.
Melissa Caywood, DPT
Melissa Caywood is a Doctor of Physical Therapy and a Board-certified Clinical Specialist in Women’s Health, conferred by the American Physical Therapy Association (2018). Melissa emphasizes a biopsychosocial, evidence-based and interdisciplinary approach to care. She utilizes a variety of manual therapy techniques, individualized therapeutic exercise prescriptions, client-centered behavioral training, mindfulness and trauma-informed techniques, neuroscience of pain education, and sEMG perineal biofeedback in her daily practice.
Melissa attended The University of Kansas, and is a graduate of The University of Kansas Medical Center where she earned her Bachelor of Science (1989) and Doctorate of Physical Therapy (2010) degrees. She holds a post-graduate certificate as a pelvic health specialist from Brooks Rehabilitation Hospital’s Institute for Higher Learning (2013). Additionally, in her continuance of life-long learning, she earned a Therapeutic Pain Specialist designation from Evidence in Motion and Purdue University (2021).
Melissa joined Smart Body in 2021. The focus of her practice is pelvic rehabilitation, and Melissa has experience treating urinary and fecal incontinence, acute and persistent abdominal/genital/pelvic pain, female athlete triad, pregnancy and post-partum care, chronic constipation and obstructed defecation, post-mastectomy, pre/post-GYN cancer care, sexual dysfunction-dyspareunia, vaginismus, transgender/nonbinary musculoskeletal care, pre/post-prostatectomy recovery, pelvic organ prolapse, menopause, fibromyalgia and osteoporosis.
Her past clinical experience includes: extensive experience in out-patient orthopedics including sports performance analysis in performing artists-musicians, conductors, dancers, runners, golfers, throwers, in-patient rehabilitation/general acute care, return-to-work programming, pain management clinics, school-based pediatric physical therapy, and wound care. Melissa is an APTA-credentialed Clinical Instructor, and a member of the American Physical Therapy Association Section on Women’s Health, International Continence Society, National Association for Continence, and Pelvic Physical Therapy Journal Club. She has served as an adjunct instructor for several physical therapy assistant, physical therapy and fine arts/dance performance programs.
Sara Lofton, DPT
Sara Lofton is a Jacksonville native. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Athletic Training from the University of Central Florida while living in Orlando. Having missed living near the beach, she returned to the Jacksonville area and was able to pursue her Doctorate in Physical Therapy degree at the University of North Florida.
She became interested in pelvic health not long after graduation, and decided to dive further into this specialty through mentorship and continuing education courses. Sara is passionate about teaching others about their body and guiding them to achieve their goals. She feels no one should suffer in silence, and that there is nothing more rewarding than seeing the relief on a patient’s face when they realize there is hope. She has been with Smart Body Physical Therapy since 2021.
In her spare time, Sara likes to take her dog to the park or swimming around in the pool. She loves being outside as much as possible, whether it be riding bikes, hunting for shark teeth, or out on the boat.
Kayla Sisson, DPT
Kayla always felt led to physical therapy. Growing up active in sports gave her an appreciation for healthfulness and the human body. Her love of sports soon grew into a passion for exercise and nutrition. Kayla obtained her bachelor’s in exercise science and a minor in nutrition from Fairmont State University in West Virginia. She then went on to obtain her Doctor of Physical Therapy Degree from Arcadia University in Pennsylvania. An internship brought her to Florida, where she met her husband.
Kayla fell in love with pelvic floor therapy because of how much it touches peoples’ lives on a personal level. She feels honored to help people through personal and delicate issues that they often don’t realize they can even change, and then witness the growth that happens with their enhanced ability to fully enjoy life again. It is her goal to help her patients be able to participate in the activities they most enjoy and, in fact, “savor life,” as our motto says.
In their spare time, Kayla and her husband enjoy fitness, bowling and softball.
Kaitie Toth, DPTDPT
Kaitlin – or as we call her, Kaitie – is a Florida native who enjoys everything the Sunshine State has to offer, including fishing, diving and running outdoors. From a young age, Kaitie has always had a passion for exercise and wanted to learn more about the restorative and healing powers exercise holds.
She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Applied Physiology and Kinesiology with a focus on Exercise Physiology from the University of Florida, where she also completed five half-marathons. She then pursued her Doctorate of Physical Therapy at the University of North Florida, identifying her personal and professional mission of delivering the highest level of compassionate care. Shortly after graduation, Kaitie discovered her passion for pelvic health, having realized the profound impact pelvic health rehabilitation has on an individual’s quality of life. As an active member of professional associations and multiple academies, Kaitie uses these platforms to educate the community on treatment options they often don’t know exist, and advocates for the individual to receive the care that they deserve. Kaitie is planning to further her pelvic health knowledge through clinical experience and continuing education with a long term goal of qualifying and testing for the WCS certification.
Catherine Yelvington earned a bachelor’s degree in physical education from SUNY Cortland in New York. After working as a personal trainer in Orlando, Florida, she went back to school to get her license in massage therapy and owned her own business, Muscle Kneads. She then obtained her master’s in physical therapy at the University of North Florida. Catherine found her niche in women’s health, acquiring her certificate in pregnancy/postpartum and pelvic health from the American Physical Therapy Association, and has been specializing in this field for over 10 years.
Realizing the importance of nutrition and gut health in treating this population, she furthered her education with a master’s in clinical nutrition from Maryland University of Integrative Health. Her professional goal is to put her comprehensive expertise together to help patients and communities achieve optimum health. She feels that everyone can achieve a higher level of wellness and quality of life with the correct guidance. Catherine believes that when we are not feeling well, it’s never just one thing that has gone wrong; it is multifactorial. Having education in all areas of wellness allows her to focus on a holistic approach to healing: mind, body and spirit.