FlexibilityPRO “IS” Bill LeSuer: Not Your Average Major League Coach

FlexibilityPRO “IS” Bill LeSuer: Not Your Average Major League Coach


Bill LeSuer’s tag line above his treatment table. In this office you will find no fluffly blankets, no zen music, no candles or babbling brooks. This is NOT your regular body worker. Bill is indefinable, and he is has an incredible gift. Oh, and the room, sweet baby popsicles … is a little slice of man cave heaven.



Bill is a native of Brooklyn, NY, but has earned the nickname “Frenchy” from his French Canadian roots.  Most of the sports industry will know Bill from his medical staff days with the Major League Baseball Team, but before that, before the reinvention of his life, Bill Le Seur was a fireman in Fountain Hills, Arizona. In 1993, at the age of 33, he decided to make a change. Like many of us, reinventions of oneself are usually brought about by a life changing event. In December of that year, he was involved in one of a fireman’s greatest fears going to a call; known as the infant code. Unfortunately, the infant code was at his own house. After unsuccessful CPR, they lost their daughter Taylor. Any event of this magnitude is undeniably life shattering, life changing and life altering. It can either break you, or your learn to build yourself back up. Bill knew it was time to find his calling.

“I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do but I had this very strong, overwhelming feeling that I really wanted to help people. While working my shift one day, I saw an ad in the paper for a Massage Therapy School in Scottsdale,”

Upon completing Massage Therapy School, I thought to myself “I must get this to athletes.” Now keep in mind, this is 1993, there was no such thing as muscle therapy in Major League Baseball. “I WILL BE THE FIRST” I decided.” –  Bill


Bill began his career on the Angels and the Dodgers Major League Traveling Medical Staffs. Interning at the age of 33, he worked his way up the ranks. A simple kid who grew up in Brooklyn, N.Y, sitting in the bleachers of Yankee Stadium with his Dad and brother, was now a grown man standing on the field.


“One day Paul Bradley introduced me to a gentleman “This is Jim Merrick, Pitching Coach for the Milwaukee Brewers Rookie ball team.” My stomach churned, “no way”, I thought. So this is why I’m here. Turns out Jim Merrick had a painful hip. “What do you do” asked Jim. Before I could respond, the trainer blurts out “he’s a rub guy.” I got Jim on the table and treated him for about 30 minutes. It was at this moment that I knew I wasn’t just a rub guy. I wasn’t going to massage him, I was going to release his hip muscles. He gets off the table and walks across the Training Room to test out his “new hip”. He turns around, looks at me and says “Would you mind working on some of our players?” – Bill

The major reason Bill has been so successful, is because he did not conform to traditional “massage” or “stretching.” He took a tool and molded it, to create a niche that suited his players and supported growth, that was also quantitative. A player plays better, less pain, joints mobile – it works.  When you walk into his office the walls are filled from one wall to the other of “Thank You’s” from every major player in the MLB, NHL, NFL, Olympics Track and Field, even, Arnold pump you up” schwarzenegger,  Robert Plant Led Zepplin. The guy has more thanks you and testimonials on his wall, than I have facebook friends!  Joe dimaggio is on his wall. LEGEND!


“I created the positions of Muscle Therapist and Flexibility Coach in a Major League Training room back in the mid-90s at a time when no teams recognized this type of work. I got my start with the Milwaukee Brewers Minor League Organization and also spent a couple of seasons with the Arizona Diamondbacks Training Staff at the end of my career. I was the personal therapist to 3 times Gold Medal Olympian Gail Devers, and also was a member of the 1996 British Olympic Medical Staff. I’m the owner of FlexibilityPRO Studio in North Scottsdale, AZ” – Bill

bill national_anthem


It is a series of precise palpation techniques that actually releases muscle groups. This allows full extensibility of the tissue, allowing the athlete to achieve their fullest potential and performance. After many years of treating Major League Baseball players, Bill realized that most of the injuries were from a direct result of poor muscle condition. Pulling tools from his coaches toolbox he developed and founded a treatment plan called (PFT) Performance Flexibility Training.

This therapy includes a systemic and comprehensive evaluation of the client’s tissue health; taking into account; contractures, adhesions, and restrictions in the muscle tissue. In order to improve tissue health; one much focus on removing these negatives; which are done through precise palpation techniques, along with improving the elasticity in the fascial system and the relationship between the musculoskeletal and fascial systems.

Upon meeting Bill, I wasn’t sure what to expect…RMT, PNF, FST? All of these techniques aim to provide the same thing – improve tissue health. However, Bill has been able to pull from all of these tools AND use palpation techniques, I have never experienced before to restore pliability, flexibility and range of motion. Our muscles and fascia are made to move, our bones are made to float and be pliable. Bills technique does just this. It resets the nervous system, improves proprioception and identifies where a client may lack the ability to sequentially engage or activate tissue in their body.

For example, as a ball player, if you are asked to contract your right quad and you contract both, asked again and you can’t differentiate between firing your right to left… this is risk factor and most likely will result in a lower mechanical injury down the line. Much like FMS and how we approach our operating systems in Corrective Movement, Bill’s approach is to address the cause of the dysfunction, not just chase the symptoms.



Stretching a muscle group without manually releasing the dysfunctional tissue is like waxing a dirty car…. An important step has been missed. Using a simple analogy…..we all know how far you can stretch a tube sock. This represents healthy tissue. Put three staples in the center of the sock. These staples represent past injuries, adhesions, contracture, and fascial restrictions. Now try to stretch the sock. Not too much movement between the staples is there? No amount of stretching will remove these staples. ” – Bill

As a movement coach, I am asked all the time; “I stretch every day, why am I still tight.?” My answer is always simple; what is the state of the tissue, and second, what is your approach to “stretching.” As you all know, I use that term loosely. First off, a compensation or dysfunction is rarely one muscle; it’s a series of muscles and a pattern that works inefficiently as a team. Secondly, most of my clients that ask this are athletes who put their bodies through intense training, contact and rigor.

One needs to understand that you tissue health will look much different from that of, let’s say a Yoga teacher on a resort beach. Tissue holds contracture’s, adhesion’s and scar tissue – thus inhibits movement and dulls facilitation and activation. Standard stretching, PNF or FST will not get you to where you want to be. You need to move that tissue around so that it can move freely from it’s neighbor and slide with the surrounding tissue.

The palpation technique and transitions from technique to facilitated stretch back to palpation etc is what makes FlexibilityPRO so unique and successful.

What we deduced in my session with Bill, is that my left side has significantly reduced proprioception and activation (less responsive), and my right is overly responsive, to the point my sensory feedback was much more pronounced.

Bill’s unique ability to sense muscle tissue condition has enabled him to assist world class athletes in increasing their performance. He is widely considered to be one of the foremost consultants in the field of performance muscle therapy.

I am sure Arnold would agree, when I say this – Bill LeSuer is the terminator of tissue! No more dysfunction, no more restrictions, no more pain. Subtle, extensible, pliable and just down right read to perform tissue health. If you are not aware of this man’s talent, I suggest you start following his blog here –  Thank you Bill for all that you give this world, for stepping outside the box and becoming a leader in an industry that “po-poos” “rub guys and gals” your technique just makes us all stronger and better people, as well as athletes. It was an honor to learn from you.




 “Master your body ….. before you try to master your sport.” – Bill LeSuer

With the Superbowl just around the corner, many of the teams leading the pack are sharing some of their claim to fame success stories as to why they excel at their sport.

Most recently, the San Francisco 49ers chalked up their current success to many factors, but one stood out and that is – STRETCHING. Now, when I say “stretching,” I do not mean Yoga or general flexibility in those terms. I mean tissue health and that includes elements of mobility, stability and motor control. In this case, let’s look at mobility that is relative to the functionality of the sport – Football. The game of Champions.

The San Francisco 49ers’ two-year rise from the depths of mediocrity is widely attributed to their ferocious defense and to the speed and agility of their quarterback, Colin Kaepernick.  Some are saying that he might just become the most-bet-on player in Superbowl history, surpassing Peyton Manning. That is one big statement to make.

It’s been 18 years since the San Fran 49ers have advanced to the Superbowl, so why are they playing so good? How’s this for another possibility: Maybe it’s that they stretch a lot?

In the Wall Street Journal on January 16th, Several 49ers  made headlines saying “the explanation is a stretching regimen. We do these old school stretches—heavy, heavy squats with chains, a lot of flexibility, a lot of warming up when a lot of people in the NFL skip warming up,” said safety Donte Whitner. “That’s why we have a good, healthy football team right now.”

The 49ers we are told, stretch religiously (both static and dynamic based). Stretching often gets short shrift compared with weight lifting, agility drills and sprints. Let’s face it, if you want to see the face of determination and aggression, most likely you see a shot of line backer back squatting a small house. However, I can say from personal experience that I have made many a CFL player start to sweat and scrinch his face up with an passive active straight leg raise or trigger point under the scapular region of the shoulder.

In the Wall Street Journal, Mike Bracko, a sports physiologist based in Calgary, said stretching is considered a much lower priority in the NFL than “diets or weight training or jump-training.” However with the being said, the NLF is starting to take a new twist, seeing benefit to not just stretching, but “MOBILITY” training, ensuring their players muscle tissue has the right balance of elasticity and “pull factor” that can withstand the need for speed, quick movements, cutting and, of course stopping a 300lb tank if need be (on the field of off).

I had the honor of corresponding with Mr. Bill LeSuer,  THE retired Los Angeles Dodgers Major League Medical Staff who specializes in Muscle Tissue and Body Work Therapy. His work is known by many professional athletes and teams, and while flying under the radar most of the time, his skills are rated at the top of the list. He says…  “athletes spend thousands of hours training but almost always neglect the single most important factor in human performance….. their muscle tissue.”

Healthy tissue means healthy movement, poor tissue means poor movement, it’s that simple.  More importantly Bill says that when we add undue load to any dysfunctional pattern,” well  that’s a potential injury, is  just a ticking time bomb. Bill’s company “Flexibility Pro,” and his performance treatment techniques, focuses on precise palpation techniques, restoring pliability, flexibility, and range of motion, while at the same time working to remove adhesion’s, contractures, and restrictions in the muscle tissue; which lead to poor movement mechanics. How we stretch, is just as important as why we stretch. This is why I say it’s not just about stretching, it’s muscle tissue health. Stretching is one of the tools, in the muscle tissue toolbox.

FMS & The NFL:

Almost every player in the NFL is screened using the Functional Movement Systems protocol to ensure the coaches work with therapists and medical personnel to catch dysfunction pre season, in season and post. Functional Movement Systems screenings are utilized by several top professional and college sports teams, as well as a host of government agencies, private industries, and noted medical facilities, all over the world.

These organizations understand that it costs more to rehabilitate a team member following an injury than it does to prevent the injury from occurring in the first place. Here are a few of the organizations currently utilizing the functional movement screens:

  • Green Bay Packers
  • Indianapolis Colts
  • Mayo Clinic
  • Montreal Canadians
  • New York Jets
  • Oakland Raiders
  • Orange County Fire Department
  • San Francisco 49ers
  • Secret Service
  • Stanford University
  • Texas A&M
  • Toronto Blue Jays
  • United States Government
  • University of Georgia
  • United States Military


FMS – Functional Movement Screen – Functional Movement Screen is a multi-part system used to evaluate the quality of a “movement pattern.” The Functional Movement Screen generates the FMS Score, which is used to target dysfunction in the body and is then further used to track progress through corrective intervention strategies to help restore functionality and normal movement. By screening these patterns, the FMS readily identifies functional limitations and asymmetries that can lead to injury. This scoring system is directly linked to the most beneficial corrective exercises to restore mechanically sound movement patterns.

Dysfunction in the body, if left untreated, can reduce the effects of functional training and physical conditioning and can distort body awareness. For this reason, The Functional Movement Systems screening process was created to gauge balance, stability, and mobility.

SFMA – Selective Functional Movement Assessment – The SFMA is a clinical assessment that takes the FMS Screen further. If during the FMS screen the coach and client find pain, this is then either referred to a clinical professional who can assess further, or if in a clinical setting, the professional can then further break that movement down by applying the SFMA Top Tier breakouts.

By addressing the most dysfunctional non-painful pattern, the application of targeted interventions we can focus on capturing injury and further risk of injury and this must include the assessment of body relative movement patterns, not just isolation at the point of pain. When the clinical assessment is initiated from the perspective of full body movement patterns, the clinician has the opportunity to identify meaningful impairments that may be seemingly unrelated to the main musculoskeletal diagnosis but are contributing to the primary complaint (regional interdependence).


Next weekend’s Super bowl game should be one to remember and let’s see if that 49ers new found mobility will bring a Super Bowl championship. In closing, the rule of thumb here for any athlete, or even any weekend warrior is to ensure you create a program that focuses on the long term health of your tissue. It makes sense to take the necessary steps towards catching injuries and breakdowns before they happen. The FMS and applied Corrective Movement strategies can help, but it also takes a team of integrated professionals to get you there. Surround yourself with reputable, caring professionals who work together to offer you to tools towards your best self – your best tissue health.

I know who I am cheering for, what about you?



Fuzz: Another Reason To Start a Morning Practice

Fuzz: Another Reason To Start a Morning Practice

Gil Hedley, Ph.D., founder of Integral Anatomy Productions, LLC, and Somanautics Workshops, Inc. is an anatomist whose intention is to share a larger vision of community and relationships based upon insights drawn from self-responsible and embodied life experience.

He gives a wonderful “fuzz speech” which describes with perfect simplicity why we should all get up in the morning and move, stretch and use our bodies. Don’t let the “fuzz” build up and become permanent movement inhibitions!

Visit his website for more information about his research.

More importantly, watch the Fuzz Speech here!

Stretching Into New Possibilities

When it comes right down to it Yoga is basically a form of stretching.

From stretching your ability to breathe; lengthening your inhales and exhales to stretching your mind’s capacity to quiet down, to become silent for longer and longer periods of time. To go further into the practice where it becomes not so much about the asana (postures) as it is about the ability to let go of desire, to allow for the spirit to move into the space you have created.

But really in the beginning, for me, it was all about the stretch, the movement into silence came later.

So sometimes I am surprised when people say: “Yoga?!! Oh, I could never do that”.

I try to ease them into it by saying: “Well, have you ever done any stretching after going for a walk, a run or any type of physical activity”. Actually most people have done some type of stretching in their lives. I ask them to start there; allow yourself the space to just stretch into yoga.

The asana are really a specific type of stretch; especially Yin Yoga where you stay closer to the ground and hold the stretches for a longer period of time.

As I am in my third week of recovery from an operation, I decided to try a Yin Yoga class at Yyoga Flow Wellness on Burrard Street.

The instructor, Megan Johnson, put everyone at ease by stating that as with all yoga, the length of the stretch is all up to the individual. I talked to Megan before class about my concerns and she was very reassuring by stating that although Yin can be very intense, I should allow my body to decide and just be very gentle.

I was game for that.

We started in Sukasana (easy cross legged), opening with Pranayama to settle into the space and relax into our bodies.

She then guided us slowly into little stretches of the neck where we allowed our head to drop to each of the shoulders, increasing the stretch by allowing one arm to lengthen to the floor.

Megan told us to deepen into the stretch, come to your edge and then breathe and settle in. But only go so far as to touch your edge; always bring it back if you feel any pain. Yin is about becoming comfortable in the stretch and then holding it for a specific length of time.

For the next 8 poses we stayed close to the ground, deepening our breath and allowing the body to relax.

What is interesting about Yin is that it is not about moving fast from one pose to the other, it is all about lengthening, stretching, breathing and relaxing into the pose, letting go and finally settle for awhile.

Yin does specific things that complements other types of yoga. It allows for a deepening of the stretch which in turns strengthens your muscles by creating little tears that the body repairs. Stretching into the deep connective tissues: the fascia. This is how the body keeps supple. That old saying: “use it or lose it” really does hold true for the body. To keep your body young and flexible, you need to actually use/move it. Yin is a gentle way of moving it.

Megan took us gently into this type of stretching, which is exactly what I needed after a few weeks off from yoga. Her voice is very calm and reassuring. She asks nothing of you except your willingness to try.

If you would like to give Yin Yoga a try, I can easily say it is something anyone can step into if you have done some stretching in your life. Remember that the length and depth of the stretch is always up to you, only go as far as your body allows and try to be kind to yourself. Yin only gets intense if you push yourself further than your body is willing to go. Remember to keep that ego in check.

You might notice that as you stretch further into your body, you might find yourself stretching into a yoga practice that is perfect for you.


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