Modalities for ALL Learning Styles


Have you ever heard the phrase “In one ear and out the other?” I sure have, I have vivid memories of my grandmother scolding me for just that. She could never understand how when she said things to me, particularly a list of tasks to do, I could never seem to remember. Funnily enough, my grandfather’s nickname for me was “rabbit ears” because he swore I could pick up on a conversation from anywhere in close proximity so it wasn’t my hearing. Pretty conflicting and confusing, right? I had trouble processing things I heard or remembering them long enough to do them. Years of Catholic school helped to give me structure and tools to keep myself and my fun little brain organized and on task, and I ended up being able to keep up with the rest of my class. 

The older and more self-aware I got, the more I realized my brain doesn’t work the way everyone else’s does. The more I worked with kiddos with autism and ADHD, the more I realized my brain worked similarly to theirs. When I first heard the term “neurodivergent” I felt immediately like I had found the answer to a question I didn’t even know existed for myself. This was why I wasn’t the same as other people in processing all things! This is why I had to touch everything to learn about it. This is why I had to rewrite all my notes from professors instead of just being able to absorb what they said. This is why I needed mnemonics, stories, acronyms, and other little “hacks” to learn things. 

There are many different ways people can learn. The most common forms of learning consider if a person learns best through visual, aural/ auditory, reading/writing, or kinesthetic movement. Individuals can be any combination of these, which can vary as they grow through life. Someone may start out learning better kinesthetically and learn to process information better visually as they age. In our COVID era, a new format of teaching became more prevalent, bringing “at distance” learning in to save the day in many instances.

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The prevalence of distance learning via forums such as Google Meet or Zoom brought up some questions about how well students could learn. Did students learn as well virtually? Did different types of learners have different results? Did how students felt they learned correlate with the outcome measures of learning? Distance education provides the ability for some populations to get education they would not be able to attain otherwise. In a study by Wakahiu & Kangethe, 2014, “participants described learning experiences with profound statements that endorsed online learning as an excellent strategy for fulfilling their dreams to acquire an education.”

Distance learning has many benefits including the ability to learn new materials and achieve new intellectual goals in most locations on a flexible time schedule. Another benefit is the access to visual resources and the potential to be able to rewatch. The decreased cost of transport and the safety (and hopefully less stress) of staying home were also huge benefits. Some disadvantages include not being able to guarantee effective learning, the ability to stay attentive, or be successful with materials. There can be connection and technological problems as well as some students not having the best learning environment in their home (Masalimova et al, 2022). When I think of learning and pelvic health, I think not having face-to-face interaction, accountability, and reinforcement of practicing the skills can hinder some student’s learning ability.

A report by the U.S. Department of Education compared the exam grades for online and face-to-face versions of the same course from 1996 to 2008 and concluded that “online learning could produce learning outcomes equivalent to or better than face-to-face learning (Zheng, 2021).” Cacault et al., 2021 also assessed the effects of online lectures finding that having access to a live-streamed lecture in addition to an in-person option “improves the achievement of high-ability students, but lowers the achievement of low-ability students.”

 How does this apply to Herman and Wallace? The pelvic institute has a variety of ways to learn including online courses, self-hosted options, satellite in-person classes with TAs, and in-person classes with instructors. They have made sure to account for different scenarios in order to make pelvic health learning accessible for all they can. The newest addition to the categories of “in person” and “with instructors” is Modalities and Pelvic Function. I had the pleasure of being on the curriculum team for this class and also being one of the instructors for the first run.

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I thought people would like the stuff. I thought they would be excited to try biofeedback and electrical stimulation. I thought they would be pleasantly surprised by prizes and goodie bags full of awesome takeaways. I knew it would be a novel learning experience.

What I did not expect was the overwhelming feedback from participants stating things like“this course was one of the best I have met for my learning style.” The curious part is that when they were asked what their preferred learning style was, they were all different! Some liked to see, some needed to hear it, and some just were there to touch and feel and touch again. Varied practitioners, varied experience levels, varied treatment settings and population and one very consistent point of feedback…”This class just gets me.” 

If you’re on the hunt for a class that “puts it all together” when it comes to the tools and toys that can be used for the pelvic floor, check out Modalities and Pelvic Function. Not only are there SO MANY samples (think three shipping crates full - sorry UPS) BUT this class shows you how much is out there to treat pelvic health patients, the pros/cons, the indications, contraindications, and relative precautions as well as the language on how to educate your patient on the use of these items in the clinic or as part of their home self-care routine. Join me this summer either in Raleigh NC on July 13-14  or in Manchester NH on August 24-25!

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Don’t believe me…here are two testimonials from our inaugural class!

“Of all of the pelvic floor courses I have taken up to date, this is by far the most enjoyable one! not only did it include how to efficiently treat patients, but it was well organized, exciting content, and everyone was lovely! the instructors were so personable and taught in a way to benefit any learning style. I will be recommending this to all of my fellow PF PTs!” - Rachel Biek, PT, DPT

“I loved the in-person portion of this class! The instructors (Mora and Jenna) were perfect in their roles, we were relaxed and had so much fun exploring the variety of tools to use. The feel of the class was supportive and intimate, and we had adequate time to explore everything. Mora and Jenna did an excellent job, hard to believe this was their first time teaching this class!” - Allison M. Gannon, PT, DPT


  • Cacault, Christian Hildebrand, Jérémy Laurent-Lucchetti, Michele Pellizzari, Distance Learning in Higher Education: Evidence from a Randomized Experiment, Journal of the European Economic Association, Volume 19, Issue 4, August 2021, Pages 2322–2372,
  • Masalimova, A. R., Khvatova, M. A., Chikileva, L. S., Zvyagintseva, E. P., Stepanova, V. V., & Melnik, M. V. (2022, March). Distance learning in higher education during COVID-19. In Frontiers in Education (Vol. 7, p. 822958). Frontiers Media SA.
  • Wakahiu, J., & Kangethe, S. (2014). Efficacy of online distance learning: Lessons from the Higher Education for Sisters in Africa Program. European Journal of Research and Reflection in Educational Sciences, 2(1), 1-25.
  • Zheng, M., Bender, D. & Lyon, C. Online learning during COVID-19 produced equivalent or better student course performance as compared with pre-pandemic: empirical evidence from a school-wide comparative study. BMC Med Educ 21, 495 (2021).



Mora Pluchino, PT, DPT, PRPC

Mora Pluchino

I am a graduate from Stockton University with my BS in Biology (2007) and Doctorate of Physical Therapy (2009). I have experience in a variety of areas and settings, working with children and adults, including orthopedics, bracing, neuromuscular issues, vestibular issues, and robotics training. I began treating Pelvic Health patients in 2016 and now have experience treating women, men, and children with a variety of Pelvic Health dysfunction. There is not much I have not treated since beginning this journey and I am always happy to further my education to better help my patients meet their goals.

I strive to help all of my patients return to a quality of life and activity that they are happy with for the best bladder, bowel, and sexual functioning they are capable of at the present time. In 2020, I opened my own practice called Practically Perfect Physical Therapy Consulting to help meet the needs of more clients. I have been a guest lecturer for Rutgers University Blackwood Campus and Stockton University for their Pediatric and Pelvic Floor modules since 2016. I have also been a TA with Herman and Wallace since 2020 and have over 150 hours of lab instruction experience.

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