About the Bridge Back Project

About the Bridge Back Project

mission statement

Mission Statement

Our mission is to use Counterstrain - a physical medicine modality - to help individuals recovering from trauma to cross the bridge from survivor to thriver.

We do this by providing access to free care, facilitating research, and building public awareness about Fascial Counterstrain’s ability to treat the symptoms associated with trauma as part of a holistic care strategy so that impacted individuals can return to living healthy, fulfilling lives.


Provide Care.

Lower barriers to access and subsidize Facial Counterstrain treatment as part of a holistic care plan to help people recovering from the effects of trauma and traumatic stress

Discover Through Research.

Conduct clinical research trials to measure and verify Fascial Counterstrain outcomes, submit findings for peer review, and publish results in respected industry journals.

Educate Communities

Disseminate information about Fascial Counterstrain to the general public as well as the medical and research communities.


Individuals recovering from the impacts of traumatic stress have received help from our organization

Counterstrain treatments provided to individuals recovering from traumatic stress symptoms
$ 0 K

Funds received through donations and charitable giving to invest in treatment, research, education, and operations.

Cities currently served throughout the United States.


Our Story


In 2016, a naturopathic physician named Dr. Holly Christy used a technique called 'Fascial Counterstrain' to successfully treat a patient with a back injury. The patient had tried other treatments without success, but after six sessions with Dr. Christy, he experienced significant improvement.

This led the patient to question why more people weren't aware of this effective and non-invasive technique. Dr. Christy explained that individual practitioners like herself are focused on their own practices and lack the resources for extensive research. The demand for their services keeps them too busy to invest time and money into large-scale studies.

The Birth of the Bridge Back Project

Dr. Christy decided to establish a research organization called the Bridge Back Project, enlisting the help of Ben Dennis to form a 501(c)3 organization and raise funds for clinical trials on Counterstrain.

Dr. Christy, having a background in sports medicine, wanted the research to focus on post-traumatic stress injuries. She had been attracting patients dealing with the aftereffects of severe trauma, such as violence and witnessing or enduring trauma in the line of duty. These patients experienced symptoms that prevented them from thriving, and Dr. Christy observed Counterstrain's positive impact on their physical, psychological, and emotional well-being.

The Need for Data

Dr. Christy realized that anecdotal evidence was not sufficient to build awareness and gain support from the medical and research communities. She formed a practitioner team, including her top students, to gather data for the Bridge Back Project's first clinical trial study.

The goal was to determine if Fascial Counterstrain could effectively treat symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and its comorbidities.

Inclusive Treatment Approach

The team decided not to turn away individuals who didn't meet the study requirements, as it seemed unjust to deny treatment to those in need. The control group would also receive the full treatment protocol, and no one from the communities they served would be turned away.

This led to the unofficial start of the Impact Program, which funded Counterstrain sessions for first responders, military personnel, veterans, and healthcare frontline workers.

Challenges: Awareness and Training

Dr. Christy anticipated two major challenges: lack of public awareness and understanding, and a shortage of trained Counterstrain practitioners.

These challenges inspired the creation of the Bridge Back Project's Education Program. The program aimed to address the need for public education and increase the number of qualified practitioners through training initiatives.

Education and Awareness Efforts

Currently, the Bridge Back Project's education efforts focus on disseminating information and building awareness about Counterstrain.

We have ambitious plans to launch a Scholarship Fund in 2024 to help practitioners access training.

Expansion and Leadership Changes

In 2022, the Bridge Back Project expanded its practitioner team by adding Dr. Rachel Harmon and Brian Tuckey, the innovator of Fascial Counterstrain.

In January 2023, Theora Moench was hired as the new Executive Director, replacing Dr. Holly Christy. Dr. Christy transitioned into the role of Principal Investigator and Head of Impact, focusing on research and program development.

Where we are today

In 2023, the Bridge Back Project began hiring dedicated staff to support its steady growth and ambitious goals.

Today we are focused on building capacity so that we can expand the reach of our Impact Program to more communities and regions, ensure continuity of care, hire and retain critical staff positions, and ramp up our fundraising efforts while building a devoted, passionate donor community so that we can continue to grow and deliver on the promise of out mission.

In order to do this, we rely on generous donations from friends of the project and past participants who want others to be able to experience the benefits they’ve received.

Please consider giving today to help us help more people cross the bridge from struggling survivor to flourishing thriver.

Meet our Practitioners

Willy Cherry
Willy Cherry

PT, Practitioner

Willy Cherry has been a Physical Therapist for nearly 30 years. His search for ways to overcome personal injuries and trauma has resulted in an educational path covering many disciplines. Counterstrain has been the most useful and effective tool he has found, creating positive changes in patients and himself not afforded with any other form of treatment. He co-founded Function & Action Physical Therapy in 1993 and recently joined the Counterstrain Academy’s Instructor Training Program.

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Shannon Arndt
Shannon Arndt

MSPT, JSCC, CSCI, Practitioner

Shannon is the owner/founder of Lone Lake Physical Therapy (2011) and Sage Counterstrain (2019). In 2019 she opened the Soundview Center in Langley, WA; a wellness center which provides supportive care and classes for her local community. Shannon is founder/organizer of the Roots program, developing and facilitating cost-free programs to improve community well-being.
Shannon began training in Counterstrain in 2010- and she has not stopped since, dedicating herself to mastering Counterstrain because of the profound impact it has had in improving the lives of her patients. She was certified in Strain and Counterstrain in 2014 and then in Fascial Counterstrain in 2022. She has been a teacher's assistant for the Jones Institute starting in 2017, a Lab Instructor since 2020 and a full instructor in 2023.
Shannon has been working with the Bridge back Project since 2017, and considers it an amazing honor to support those who have experienced trauma as a result of serving our community.
Shannon is passionate about helping people to be able to live their best lives, easing the effects of trauma on the body and using neural re-processing techniques to break chronic pain cycles.
Education: Graduated the top of her class from the University of Rhode Island Physical Therapy Program with her MSPT in 2006.

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Dr. Rachel Harmon
Dr. Rachel Harmon

ND, Practitioner

Dr. Rachel earned her Bachelor of Science in Integrated Human Biology, Master of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine, and Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine from Bastyr University. Rachel has taken all of the offered Fascial Counterstrain classes through the Jones Institute, four mastery programs with Counterstrain Academy, and continues to practice counterstrain under the mentorship of Dr. Holly Christy. She has been practicing medicine since 2020.

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Brian Tuckey
Brian Tuckey

PT, OCS, JSCCI Founder and Creator of Fascial Counterstrain

Mr. Tuckey, the developer of Fascial Counterstrain, graduated magna cum laude from the University of Maryland, School of Physical Therapy in 1990. He has 30+ years of outpatient orthopedic experience and has been certified as an orthopedic specialist (OCS) by the American Board of Physical Therapy Examiners since 1995. Mr. Tuckey started Tuckey and Associates Physical Therapy LLC, specializing in outpatient orthopedics and Counterstrain techniques, in April of 2004.

In 1992 Mr. Tuckey began training at the Jones Institute under the guidance of the famous osteopathic physician Dr. Lawrence Jones D.O., the originator of Strain and Counterstrain technique. Eventually Mr. Tuckey became one of only 4 physical therapists in the United States to be personally certified by Dr. Jones to teach Strain and Counterstrain.

In the late 1990’s, following the death of Dr. Jones, Mr. Tuckey took over the reins of Counterstrain innovation at the Jones Institute, expanding the curriculum from approximately 220 to over 1000 anatomically based treatments.

This modern-day version of Counterstrain is currently called “Fascial Counterstrain” due to its unique ability to impact and treat all the body’s fascial systems including the vascular, visceral, nervous, and musculoskeletal systems. As a multi-system approach, it is unique in the world of manipulation giving it unparalleled diagnostic and curative capacity. Fascial Counterstrain is currently being taught to a rapidly expanding audience of domestic and international medical professionals.

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Meet our Board of Directors

Dr. Holly Christy
Dr. Holly Christy

Board of Directors

Dr. Christy co-founded The Bridge Back Project in October of 2017 and is the principal investigator and executive director. She is passionate about providing a research-based treatment to help ease suffering for those who have suffered from post traumatic stress injuries.

Dr. Christy is trained in the highly specialized technique of Fascial Counterstrain by Tim Hodges, LMP, JSCCI, CACI and Brian Tuckey, PT, OCS, JSCCI, both of whom have been pioneering an effort to expand the methodology of Counterstrain to effectively restore function to the fascial systems of the body: Visceral, Neural, Cranial/Dural, Musculoskeletal, Arterial, Venous and Lymphatic. She is an instructor for the Counterstrain Academy and the Jones Institute, and a graduate and clinical adjunct faculty member of Bastyr University.

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Jay Fluegel
Jay Fluegel

Board of Directors

Jay Fluegel joined the board in October 2023 after serving as a volunteer for over 9 months. Jay is a maker, strategist, and storyteller with 25 years of product leadership experience. He is the founder of Atomically, a transformation consulting company helping start-ups, scale-ups, nonprofits, and established enterprises transform their businesses, products, technology, and leadership.

He studied Entrepreneurship at Cornell University and in the Technology MBA program at University of Washington’s Foster School of Business. He has been on the management teams of startups including Jump Networks which was acquired by Microsoft, and built or turned around teams at Microsoft, Expedia, and Axon/TASER. Business strategy, product vision and demonstration, and idea incubation are his superpowers. People are his love.

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Meet our Staff

Theora Moench
Theora Moench

Executive Director

With a background in entrepreneurship, organizational development, and extensive training in relational intelligence and coaching, Theora is proud to serve as the Bridge Back Project’s Executive Director.

She was a student-athlete and world adventurer who sustained both head and back injuries defending goals and chasing new destinations. She found Counterstrain after 14 years of chronic pain and reduced mobility that were negatively impacting her quality of life. Counterstain treatmentss effectively treated her symptoms, which other healthcare providers had concluded were untreatable. She now lives mostly free of both symptoms and pain, and is a “converted skeptic” passionately advocating on behalf of making Countertrain accessible to as many people in need as possible.

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Elana Kanan
Elana Kanan

Communications Manager

Elana Kanan is the Bridge Back Project Communications Manager. She is passionate about using her marketing skill set for improving the lives of others by creating accessibility for holistic treatments of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder through modalities like Counterstrain.

She holds degrees in Psychology, Philosophy, and Neuroscience, as well as a certificate (and soon-to-be license) for psychedelic therapy facilitation. She is based in Portland, Oregon.

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