Before December 5, 2015, Katherine Portillo was a bodybuilder who ran marathons and triathlons. But that all changed one night when the Air Force major and her husband, Pavel Ythjall, got into a bad car accident on the way to a holiday party. Ythjall sustained a fractured skull and CI vertebrae, which he has since made a full recovery from. Portillo, on the other hand, was instantly paralyzed from the shoulders down, leaving her to require round-the-clock care at her home in order to perform even the most basic tasks.
After being medically discharged from the Air Force, Portillo won’t be receiving enough money to cover the extensive costs of having 24/7 homecare. So Australian black belt Matt Jones decided to step in. The head jiu-jitsu coach at ISO Health in Adelaide, Jones himself has broken his neck and herniated multiple discs in his spine. But thanks to his experience as a certified strength and conditioning specialist, he was able to give himself the rehabilitation he needed. Jones has over twenty years’ experience in strength and conditioning and spine rehabilitation, which enabled him to develop the Jones Spine Method: a back care and postural training system designed to reduce back pain, strengthen the back muscles, and reduce the chances of future back injuries.
On Sunday, August 27, the west coast will get the opportunity to learn from Jones himself when he comes to Los Angeles, California, to give a seminar on the Jones Spine Method. While anyone can benefit from developing a stronger back, the course is designed specifically with personal training and physical therapy professionals, athletes, and individuals who have previously suffered back pain or injuries. Given that the instruction is coming from a BJJ black belt, you can be sure that the information you’ll be receiving will be beneficial to your jiu-jitsu game and recovery as well.
Best of all, all proceeds from the event will go to supporting Kat Portillo’s recovery and medical expenses. Spots are limited, so if you’re interested, check out the event page and Portillo’s story to learn more about this incredible event being put on for a great cause.