About us

The Exemplar Difference…

Typically, patients seek physical therapy services due to an injury, pain, or simply because they have lost their ability to function as well as they would like. This loss of function may impact their ability to participate in sports, work, care for themselves/ family members or simply enjoy life.

I bet you are looking for a place where you will feel comfortable, listened to and treated by a skilled knowledgeable and compassionate physical therapist that can educate and guide your along your journey to wellness. If so, you are in the right place!

After 24 years of being a skilled manual physical therapist and over 40 years of being a competitive athlete, I understand my patient’s desire to return to their active lifestyles at their most optimal level of function because I have been a patient many times myself.

Hence at Exemplar, we believe in a therapeutic approach where the highest level of quality, evidence-based, 1:1 manual therapy is centered around you, the patient. Together we will identify the symptom provoking activities with a comprehensive examination of your joints, muscles, nerves and soft tissues that may be hindering efficient movement and contributions to your symptoms so that we can design the best plan of care.

Certifications:

Fellowship of the American Academy of Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapy

Functional Manual Therapy®

Jones Strain and Counterstrain

Ergonomic Assessment Specialist

American Heart Association Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation

Sports Accomplishments:

Professional Tennis – Women’s Tennis Association

National Competitive Body Builder – National Physique Committee

Hobbies

Pilates

Forest Yoga

Road Cycling

 

What our clients Say

Esther

Stacey is amazing! After many years of debilitating back pain, 4 spinal injections that did not help, and most recent my pain doc recommended that I have a Spinal Cord Stimulator Implant, my friend recommended that I see a Manual Therapist, Stacey Knowles. In the past 10 years I have seen 5 different PT's and Stacey, by far, is the BEST I have worked with because her treatments are for the long term and she has changed my life! Because of the issues I have (herniated disks, debilitating sciatic pain in my leg, spinal stenosis and arthritis to name a few), I had to stop working out. I couldn't walk longer than 10 minutes anymore. I used to walk 4-5 miles a day, 5 days a week, but all this stopped 18 months ago because the sciatic pain was unbearable. Stacey spends the entire time with me, hands on, 1 on 1 treatment, explaining techniques and exercises. Stacey is friendly, has many years of experience, she's sincere and honest. I am beyond thrilled to say that after 5 months of treatment, I am walking 4 miles again regularly. With every step I take I am so grateful for Stacey because she made my goal of wanting to walk again without limping and without pain come true. I highly recommend Stacey if you have any kind of pain. See her first before getting spinal injections, taking strong pain meds or getting spinal procedures that you may not even need because Stacey will help you!

Hector

Excellent, state of the art, personalized service.  

Svetlana G

I was originally recommended to see Stacey for my shoulder after rotator cuff surgery. The shoulder was very painful and did not seem to heal correctly. I had better movement, but there was still a lot of pain despite getting several injections after the surgery. Turns out that I needed to have a second surgery to release the nerve which Stacey suspected. After healing from the second surgery, 6 months later, I had extensive abdominal surgery which seemed to worsen my back and hip pain post surgery. So, I went back to Stacey to get some relief. Slowly but surely things are getting better and I'm getting back to moving like my old self. I've got one or more issues with my foot now and would only trust Stacey with her expertise treatment to get me back on track. She does this mini examination each time I come to determine where I hurt, feel stiff or feel weak and then like magic she resolves the problem. I am truly grateful for having Stacey as part of my healthcare team.

Richard P

Stacey Knowles is in my humble opinion a an outstanding Physical Therapist. As I was walking unassisted up the stairs in our house this evening I thought to myself, "This is incredible. I did not have to pull myself up the stairs, or ask my wife to come down and carry things up for me!" Everything changed after I began working with Ms. Knowles. I cannot pinpoint exactly what she has done, except to say, that until I began working with Ms. Knowles, at age 66.8 I had figured that my days of moving with ease were over. Somehow, with her knowledgeable hands and direction, she has coaxed my body back into mobility. I came to see her with a swollen Achilles tendon and extreme pain in my lower right leg. This condition, which has been troubling me for more than a year, had caused my body to twist and turn in order to compensate for the condition ~ wreaking havoc with my skeletal and muscular system. I was seriously contemplating surgery even though most orthopedic surgeons did not promise positive results. My general practitioner suggested trying physical therapy as an alternative and I am glad that she did. I simply cannot say enough good things about Stacey Knowles and her unique and specialized approach to PT. In just over a month since beginning to work with her and follow her instructions ~ I am walking differently (better) and almost able to bound up and down stairs again. I am taking the time to write this review out of gratitude and appreciation for what Stacey has done for and with me. Need PT? I don't think you could find a better resource anywhere. Her well organized office speaks to her professionalism and approach. She gives detailed, personal, one on one attention to each of her patients. This is no mass industrial factory like PT office - it is an office dedicated to helping patients improve and regain maximum and optimal health. Stacey Knowles is a treasure.

Lynn C

Stacey is the very best at what she does. My neighbor referred her, and I thank her for the referral any’ chance I get. Stacey is professional, knowledgeable and is devoted to fixing what is wrong and taking away the pain! She is compassionate, yet not afraid to push her patients to reach their full potential. Her goal is to make her patients whole and to allow them to resume their normal life. She succeeds, and I highly endorse her.

Germaine R

Stacey is an excellent therapist. She is passionate about helping people heal and dedicated to her profession. She helped me with an issue involving my shoulder, resulting in it feeling better. I have a better range of motion because of the work she did. I highly recommend this young lady!

Lillia C

Stacey has been helping me with shoulder pain. She’s very knowledgeable & has helped me tremendously with only 3 visits! Today I had dry needling & I’m amazed how much my mobility improved. She’s very dedicated to her profession & you know she truly wants to help you. I’m willing to drive the hour from the northern suburbs to see her! The place is immaculate.  

Sheri F

Stacey is the most amazing physical therapist I have worked with, and I would highly recommend her! I spent 5 months with another PT and was having persistent pain and limited range of motion of my shoulder. I was referred to Stacey by my PT, and at the first visit she used her impressive hands on skills to increase the mobility in my shoulder. I have been working with her for a few months, and am finally pain-free and have regained nearly full mobility of my shoulder. Stacey is not only incredibly knowledgeable and skillful, but is a joy to work with as she makes each session fun and lighthearted!

John S

I had knee replacement surgery in 2019. I was given the name of Ms. Stacey Knowles by Skokie NorthShore hospital. Under Ms. Knowles care, which I found to be caring, respectful and courteous, my knee re-hab went very smoothly. Ms. Knowles is very hands on in her approach, which I did not find in other rehab facilities. By this I mean other places whose staff will bounce around because they have more than one patient, can get distracted. Ms. Knowles has one patient per session and gets the most out of you in this session. I am having the other knee replaced this year and you can bet I am going back to Exemplar. Thank you Ms. Knowles for your hard work and study to make us all better stronger people.

Renee F

I have been to several different kinds of physical therapy over the years for various things. I am an avid cyclist and have had an ongoing problem with my leg, that was diagnosed initially as an IT Band issue. After Stacey's thorough evaluation, and going over all of my issues, where the pain was coming from and what I did to get there, she evaluated that it could be something to do with my spine. She showed me specific exercises that would strengthen my core, and after a month or so, I have improved so much I can't believe it. No more pain! I was in daily, nightly pain before this. I couldn't ride my bike. I am so happy with my results. I highly recommend Exemplar Physical Therapy.

Patricia S

I have seen different Physical therapists over the last 2 years. My condition is a complicated one, and has been difficult to figure it out. A friend of our neighbors, who is also a physical therapist, recommended that I see Stacey Knowles. She said she has a lot of experience and knowledge, loves to solve difficult issues and is dedicated and compassionate. Well she was right. Stacey is a no-nonsense Physical therapist. Her knowledge of the human body is extraordinary. I finally am seeing progress, and am very hopeful now that I am seeing Stacey. I love her!

Sayra R

I have followed and will continue to follow Ms. Stacey Knowles wherever she may go! I initially went to see her after a friend of mine, who also happens to be a PT recommended me to her as she was certified in functional manual therapy and is the only other person she trusts to treat her as well. I had back surgery and had seen other PT’s but all they would do is print out a page with exercises on it and tell you to do them. None of those exercises worked and actually made me feel worse. I had back surgery and after years of back problems my back was just a tight mess. Stacey will poke, prod, bend and move you around until she finds that one muscle that is tight and will work on releasing it which makes ALL the difference in allowing me to remain pain free, which at one point I thought would never happen. I have gone back to her a couple times when things start flaring up and she fixes me right up! I love her new location and am so happy she is able to bring her exemplary skills to all who are fortunate enough to be treated by her. I have sung, and will CONTINUE to sing her praises to anyone in need of PT!  

James O

Diagnosed my problem quickly and treated the root cause in an expedient and professional manner. She was informative and made each visit count. I highly recommend Exemplar.

Greg F

I have had numerous injuries and accidents. Each time, Stacey was able to get me back in the game with her ability and knowledge. When it comes to physical therapy, I believe no one knows more on what should be done and how to do it. She evaluates, creates a plan and provides the direction with exercises that work. When I experience an injury or joint pain, I call Stacey at Exemplar before ever calling any doctor.

R L

I highly recommend Stacey! She was very helpful working with me through a shoulder problem. Stacey is knowledgeable, dedicated, and an excellent physical therapist.  

Robert M

I could not be more pleased with my experience with Stacey and Exemplar. I arrived barely able to walk, due to sciatic nerve pain, and Stacey quickly found the source of the problem and created a regimen that addressed the problem at its source. Improvement began immediately and continued until I no longer suffered from the pain (and no longer needed to continue office visits). More importantly, she left me with the tools and information to ensure against a relapse. She is so knowledgeable, professional, and enjoyable to deal with, making the entire experience a positive. I will surely recommend Stacey to anyone who asks, and in the event my pushing-60-year-old self needs physical therapy in the future, I know where I will seek it.

Margot B

I came to Exemplar Physical Therapy for a hip issue, which Stacey has helped immensely. Over the course of my time with her, other underlying issues have arose. She has been nothing short of patient and honest with her care. Stacy is truly a healer. I can’t thank her enough for what she has already done for me, and what I am sure she will do for me in the future.

Julie L

Highly recommend Stacey at Exemplar Physical Therapy. I have learned things from her that I’ve never heard anywhere else, and she made simple adjustments in a matter of minutes to the way I was carrying myself when I walked that significantly reduced my lower back pain. She is incredibly knowledgeable, always learning, and is a fun, engaging, caring practitioner. You can do no better.  

Natalie S

Stacey is truly the best. I have a number of chronic pain problems and have seen many physical therapists in the past. She is above and beyond any of the others I have seen. She is specialized in a number of areas. She is aware and empathetic of chronic pain problems and works with you to find the best approach in terms of treatment and exercises. Her exercises are different and not the same theraband exercises that seem to be a one size fits all. She is very hands on and great with manual therapy. Also does dry needling and I swear has some certificate or level of training in everything. I HIGHLY recommend!

Tom R

Easily the best, most complete, most insightful P.T. experience I've had over the course of 2 knee replacements and other miscellaneous lesser projects. I made notable progress after each and every visit.

Amie K

Stacey is passionate, extremely knowledgeable and compassionate with her approach to physical therapy. I was in an accident overseas that required emergency surgery on my shattered humerus, and after seeing another PT for awhile and not seeing the results I was hoping for, I found Stacey. Her hands-on approach, one-on-one attention, positive attitude and desire to help me get better has made all the difference in the world. And I am well on my way to a full recovery, exceeding expectations of myself and my surgeon in the States. Stacey takes a full-body approach to PT, not just treating the symptoms but really searching for the root cause of what's happening. After seeing her for one session, I was already improving more than I had been with a past PT, who I'd been seeing for months. She pushes you when you need it and is always straightforward and thorough with her explanations and approach to treatment. I truly can't say enough good things about her and her work.

Amie K

Theresa D

I was referred to Stacey by NorthShore. It turned out to be an excellent recommendation. Stacey completed a thorough eval on my first visit and developed my plan accordingly. She was very conscientious about providing the most comprehensive, yet cost-effective treatment. She used my visits to provide hands on treatment and taught me strength training and stretching exercises that I could do on my own. I completed my treatment about 3 months ago, but continue with the exercises she taught me. I'm very happy with the progress I made under her care.

Theresa D

Barbara

Stacy provides, by far, the most effective Physical Therapy I have ever experienced. Previous times, with other Physical Therapists, I was mostly given exercises to do independently while the therapist worked with other patients. I always had this thought in the back of my mind - heck, I could do this without PT. Stacy has a totally different approach. She uses different techniques. Very hands-on. Very observant. Explains everything. Encourages questions. And most important - she gets results. For me, significant reduction in pain, improved strength and balance and home exercises that make sense. She is also very personable and engaging. The time flies. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.  

Barbara

Ellen

Stacey is the BEST physical therapist and seeing her for my numerous pains is exactly what I needed. She has done so much to correct my posture, strengthen my back muscles and even correct the curvature in my spine. I know now that much of the pain I am experiencing is from accidents and injuries I had growing up, which have not come to the surface until now. What a blessing to have found Stacey and to be seeing her. Unlike other therapists and PT companies that want you to buy "packs of appointments," Stacey has always been able to determine the source of my pain, develop a program for us to work through and steps me through it so I can continue on my own. She is very thorough in her working with me, which I am so appreciative of. I do not feel "rushed" when I have an appointment with her, and am very surprised the amount of extra time she will take with me when it is needed or time allows. I cannot say that about others. One time, my pain was so bad that I came into see Stacey on an emergency basis, walking into her office on crutches. Once in her hands, and after an accurate assessment of my problem, I left there that day without the crutches. Stacey is amazing. I recommend her to my family and friends without hesitation. There's no one I trust more.

Ellen

Tia I.

A friend recommended Stacey to me because of her experience with complex cases. I’ve seen over a dozen physical therapists in the last 10 years to treat neck, back, hip and knee issues yet I have continually struggled (neck and hip involved replacement surgeries). It wasn’t until I met Stacey that I actually began to have hope that I would progress past the pain I’ve experienced. She is the best PT I have ever known.

Katia

”Stacey was recommended to me by a Sports Medicine doctor. Her initial evaluation was spot on! It's a very individualized, hands on therapy. She listens to my concerns and treats my body as a whole. Stacey taught me very doable home exercises, including how to correct my posture!”

Dev T.

Four years ago I needed physical therapy for a back problem. Stacey gave me the tools I needed to relieve my pain and strengthen my muscles. She also discovered an abnormality that my doctor and Xrays did not show. I have had physical therapy before but I did not receive the care that like I received from Stacey.  You will not go wrong if you choose her.

Martha J.

I would just like to say that from my first visit to my last, Stacey was a true professional to work with. She was truly interested in helping me get better. She would take the time during my appointment to make notes of what I was saying and would show me what I needed to do to help myself get better. Stacey is also a good person, interested in my life and we would have great conversations. She would always tell me what she was doing and why she was doing it. I think that is the sign of a true professional. We would also have fun. I think that is an important part of the PT and patient relationship.

Lille R.

After playing tennis for over 30 years and having a serious fall on the tennis court, the doctor told me I needed knee replacement surgery. Stacey immediately started PT to straighten my knee pre-operative for 2 months before surgery so that my surgery would be a success. After surgery, I had 6 weeks of PT with Stacey and I was discharged from both my doctor and Stacey. I was able to return to playing tennis and walking my dog without pain. Stacey is the most skilled, passionate and knowledgeable physical therapist I have ever had. I highly recommended her.

Steve

I wholeheartedly endorse Stacey L. Knowles as a First Rate Physical Therapist. I started treatment by Ms. Knowles immediately after complex rotator cuff surgery after a serious fall that resulted in "a severe tear of the rotator cuff in December of 2017. I found Ms. Knowles to be professional, knowledgeable, and most importantly, effective. The following year, as my treatment continued for my shoulder, I underwent spinal surgery (5 lumbar vertebrae fusion). Again, I was recommended to Ms. Knowles, and continued to find her to be an exceptional PT. I can not recommend her more highly because she has improved my overall quality of life.  

exemplarphysicaltherapychicago patient workout

We Offer Different Treatment to your Pain

Our physical therapists are highly trained professionals at uncovering the root cause of your symptoms, meeting your physical challenge with a solution that allows your body to function at its full potential.  We know how pain can immobilize you.

HeadacheBack PainNeck PainLateral/ Medial Epicondylitis
Ankle PainJaw/TMJ PainCarpal tunnelShoulder Pain
SciaticaKnee PainSports InjuriesPelvic Floor Pain
IncontinencePregnancySacroiliac Joint PainPre/Post-Operative Rehab

 

exemplarphysicaltherapy 4
exemplarphysicaltherapy 3
exemplarphysicaltherapy5
GET OUR SPECIAL COVID 19 PROTOCOL HERE
Copied! Experiencing