Physical Therapy Team


Rachna LaLonde, MPT

Rachna LaLondeWith 20 years of Physical Therapy experience, Rachna LaLonde has worked with hundreds of patients with various diagnoses ranging from severe burns, brain injury, spinal cord injury, stroke, cardiovascular disease, post surgical orthopedic conditions, pain management issues, sports injury, and children with neurological and orthopedic conditions. She also has 14 years of personal training experience as she combined both practices into one when she founded Wellness by Design Physical Therapy in 1998.

Rachna has created a physical therapy practice where patients needing skilled rehabilitative care from highly educated and trained therapy staff can receive such treatment while other health minded, proactive, prevention minded, non-medical clients can receive fitness and wellness guidance from the same highly trained health care providers all in one gym. Rachna and her team are dedicated to evaluating and treating the “whole” patient rather than just the one ailing body part that may bring the patient into the therapy gym. Rachna believes, “the shoulder is never just the shoulder and the knee is never just the knee………we are a whole person and when we move, it all has to move together and correctly for that matter”. “This is our area of expertise, Physical Therapists are the MOVEMENT SPECIALISTS of the medical world and therefore, we make the best exercise prescribers as well”.

Rachna has created a client-centered, friendly, inviting, nurturing, as well as professional environment for physical therapy patients and personal training clients alike to meet their individual medical and wellness goals.
Rachna graduated from the College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific in 1996 with a Master’s degree in Physical Therapy. She is also the creator of the LongSpine Method which is helping patients and clients “transform their lives”.
Rachna is the mother of two sons and is sure to drop them off and pick them up from school and keep those afternoons off to do what she feels is best for her family. For her enjoyment outside of work, Rachna loves to take spin classes, entertain friends at home, create healthy recipes for her family, and spend as much time in the sun as possible.

Stephanie Clements, PT, DPT

Stephanie Clements PT, DPT - Physical Therapy | Newport Medical and Wellness | Wellness By DesignStephanie Clements originally joined the Wellness By Design team in 2011 as a physical therapy aide, and then returned to Wellness by Design in 2015 after finishing her doctoral education. Stephanie is a California native, born and raised in Costa Mesa. She graduated from California State University Long Beach with a Bachelors of Science in Kinesiology, with an emphasis in Exercise Science. After graduating, she trained under Rachna LaLonde learning the LongSpine Method. She assisted with physical therapy patients, worked with personal training clients, and taught LongSpine Method classes. She then returned to school, receiving her Doctorate in Physical Therapy from Chapman University. She has clinical internship experience in multiple settings, including outpatient orthopedic, inpatient rehabilitation, acute/hospital, and inpatient wound care.

Her clinical interests include orthopedic and neurological rehabilitation, wellness and preventative “pre-hab”, and helping patients return to the activities they love. Stephanie has been a yoga enthusiast for 10+ years, and received her yoga teacher certification in 2015. Outside the clinic, she enjoys spending time with friends and family, doing yoga, and taking her dog on long walks.

Kerry Tortarolo, PT, DPT

Kerry TortaroloKerry joined the team at Wellness by Design in July 2011 after completing her doctoral education. She was born and raised in Orange County.
Kerry has an extensive background in dance and movement which includes competing nationally and internationally in Scottish Highland Dance and performing throughout Manhattan and Brooklyn with various modern and dance-theater companies. She also lived in worked in New York City as a physical therapy aide and became inspired by all the aspects of physical therapy before she decided to return to school to pursue a career in the field. Kerry finds working as a physical therapist extremely rewarding, and loves being able to individualize treatment in order to heal, restore function, and give hope to patients. She enjoys working with a wide variety of orthopedic and neurological conditions and looks forward to coming to work every single day.

In her free time, Kerry likes cooking, concerts, and weekend getaways. She also loves spending quality time with family and friends. Kerry stays active with teaching cardio dance classes at 24 hour fitness and rounds out her fit lifestyle with weight lifting and spinning classes.

Kristen Gilligan, PT Aide

Kristen Gilligan joined the Wellness by Design team in 2016. Kristen was born and raised in Costa Mesa. She graduated from Loyola Marymount University with a Bachelors of Science degree in Health and Human Services. She first came to Wellness By Design as a physical therapy patient, and eventually transitioned to LongSpine classes. She was amazed by how much the LongSpine Method helped her and changed the way she thought about exercise and pain. She now works with personal training clients, assists with physical therapy patients, and teaches LongSpine Method classes.

Top 10 Physical Therapists in Costa Mesa 2016