Julia Di Paolo received her physiotherapy degree from the University of Ottawa back in 1997. In 2012, she became rostered with the College of Physiotherapists to perform the controlled act of internal assessment and treatment for pelvic floor disorders. Her practice is currently focused on pre-conception, pre-natal, intra-partum (labour and delivery), post partum and all types of pelvic floor dysfunction at any stage of a woman’s life. She has extensive experience with conditions such as diastasis recti, incontinence, pelvic organ prolapse, back and pelvic girdle pain. More recently her focus has been on the pelvic floor and its relationship to the rest of the body, specifically with diastasis in the pregnant and post partum populations. Over the years, Julia has established herself as the go-to physiotherapist in Toronto for pelvic health and recovery from diastasis rectus abdominis.
Julia has worked in private practice her entire career, starting in regular orthopaedics. After 12 years in a spine and sports clinic under the mentorship of Anita Lorelli, Julia opened her own clinic, PhysioExcellence, the first dedicated women’s and pelvic health clinic in downtown Toronto.
Around the same time, Julia co-founded Bellies Inc, a company dedicated to abolishing Diastasis Rectus Abdominis (DRA) and restoring form and function to the abdominal wall in pregnant women and new moms. She is the co-creator of the Ab System, a patented light compression garment modelled after the centuries old practice of belly wrapping post partum. In conjunction with her partners, Kim Vopni and Samantha Montpetit-Huynh, they have created the many prenatal and postpartum programs designed to help pregnant women Prepare Recover and Restore.
Julia has written and teaches courses on diastasis rectus abdominis, for personal trainers, allied health professionals and pelvic health physiotherapists. She has been a guest lecturer for the Physiotherapy program at the University of Toronto. She has taught pelvic floor palpation and prolapse assessment for the Association of Ontario Midwives (AOM), and presented on DRA and the pelvic floor at the Association of Ontario Midwives Annual Conference, the Canadian Association of Midwives annual conference, the Ontario Physiotherapy Association Annual Conference, Canadian Fitness Professionals (CanFitPro) international conference and the Canadian Personal Trainer Network (CPTN) conference. Julia is a contributor to Maternal Goddess.org, a not-for-profit online community that gathers experts in their fields to advance the education and awareness of postnatal health. She has been interviewed for the Toronto Star, Globe and Mail, Canadian living as well as other smaller online publications. She has also appeared as a guest expert on the CBC tv show The Goods.
Julia is the author of the Labour and Birth Handbook (2016) and co-author of Pregnancy Fitness (2018)
Julia is a firm believer in continuing education, and in addition to creating and teaching her own courses on Diastasis and Pelvic Floor through Bellies Inc, she attends many conferences and courses locally and internationally every year. Her certifications include Mechanical diagnosis and therapy (the McKenzie method), Integrated Systems Model (ISM with Diane Lee and LJ Lee), Hypopressives method, Pfilates, Rost Therapy, Labour and Delivery-advanced techniques for labour support, Physical Therapy for the Pediatric Pelvic Floor patient, Pelvic Neurodynamics, Manual Therapy, Medical Exercise Therapy
After 5 wonderful years in her own clinic, Julia has downsized PhysioExcellence and now works out of the lower level apartment in her home. A bright and open 1200 sqft clinic space she shares with the kinesiologist Shirley Srubiski.
Having only attended school in French, Julia completed her Physiotherapy degree as well as her pelvic health certification in French and works in what she calls “franglais”, the perfect melding of the 2 languages, flipping back and forth at will.
Julia is a former athlete and is married to an ultra marathoner. She understands the demands of an elite athlete and the desire to return to sport quickly after an injury or post partum. When not seeing patients, presenting or attending courses and conferences, Julia can be found hanging out at the hockey arena or baseball diamond watching her 2 boys play.