Nate Romesburg and John Popeck came up with a business initiative that fit them to a tee.
Romesburg, a physical therapist in Washington, and Popeck, a golf teaching professional, formed a twosome in September to launch an endeavor that encompasses the benefits of PT and athletic instruction. Accompanied by a computerized golf simulator, they work with clients striving to improve their health, improve their game or both.
“It’s physical therapy joining forces with golf,” said Romesburg, an experienced physical therapist in the city. Simulator sessions are conducted at Romesburg Physical Therapy & Sports Fitness, located in the Washington Trust Building at 30 E. Beau St.
The simulator initiative, to be sure, does not translate into a full-time job for either man. Tending to patients is Romesburg’s priority, and some haven’t the need for golf instruction or analysis.
He is a golf devotee, however. Romesburg was a quality player in high school, and a member of the University of Pittsburgh team for a while. He says on his LinkedIn profile that he has “given multiple golf fitness/injury prevention seminars ... and worked as a therapist at professional events.”
Romesburg has a cousin who continues to distinguish herself on the course: Rachel Rohanna Virgili, the women’s coach at Waynesburg University, who fared well on the Ladies Professional Golf Association Tour.
Popeck is a teaching pro at Washington Country Club. He also is a traveling golf instructor who is certified by the Titleist Performance Institute to provide instruction at various locations around the region, including Romesburg’s facility.
Popeck was a top-notch player at Charters-Houston High, the University of Maryland and in junior competition. He is preparing lo launch a website, www.jpo.golf.
A serendipitous course of events has brought them together on this venture. “I’ve known Nate for a long time, back to high school,” said Popeck, 33. “I broke my ankle playing basketball and he was my physical therapist at the (Wilfred R. Cameron) Wellness Center.”
Working with a golf simulator may be a novelty for some who enter Romesburg Physical Therapy. The device, according to fiveirongolf.com, “is a high-tech system that enables you to practice golf indoors in a virtually simulated golf environment.
“It is a computerized golf setup designed to mimic the real game, helping you analyze your swing, understand your weaknesses, and improve your game without having to go to your local course.”
Romesburg said, “You hit real balls and we can detect club speed and ball speed, and which direction balls are going.” The screens display courses or golf scenes.
Golf simulators, they said, are not common in Southwestern Pennsylvania. Many of these high-tech computers are pricey. A modest model could go for as little as $150, according to golfstead.com, but a top-of-the-line device may cost $70,000.
The range of services Popeck and Romesburg are offering through their simulator dynamic is not as expansive as the prices, but clients and would-be clients do present a variety of needs – to improve their bodies and lower their scores.
“We can do different things depending on the client,” Romesburg said. “John knows swings very well and checks the swings. I know the body very well and can check the body.”
Popeck said, “We check the body to see if there are issues. Nate is strengthening a person, seeing results while improving swings.”
“We do a screening and see if maybe a hip is too tight or weak,” Romesburg said. “We want to improve the body.”
He and Popeck are enthused about their simulator program, in which each can employ his professional specialty and make the two work in a complementary manner.
“There is nothing in this area like this,” Popeck said. “I think this is really cool stuff – really cool and really good.”
Romesburg, the physical therapist, added: “We are trying to think outside the box. People are learning about the body and their golf swing. I think this will definitely pick up.”
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