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Karen Kemmis, PT, DPT, MS, CDE, FAADE

Karen Kemmis

Hi! My name is Karen Kemmis, and I am a physical therapist (PT)and certified diabetes educator. I also have certifications in Pilates for rehabilitation and exercise for aging adults. I work at SUNY Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, NY where I split my time between our Joslin Diabetes Center affiliate, outpatient rehabilitation department, and as an adjunct professor for our PT program.

I have been a PT for 26 years (time flies when you’re having fun!) and have worked in diabetes education for 14 years. In my job as a diabetes educator, I teach group classes and meet with people individually to create safe and effective exercise/physical activity programs. I have several areas of interest including diabetes, osteoporosis, balance dysfunction, general orthopedic/painful conditions, and geriatrics. There are many interactions between each of these areas when it comes to individual patients.

I think the most satisfying thing I do is to guide patients to the best program for them based on their physical and social challenges. If it was as easy as “just going for a walk,” everyone would do it!

I have been extremely fortunate in my participation in the AADE over the past 11 years. I was involved in the creation of the Physical Activity Specialty Practice Group (SPG), became the first Chair-elect, then Chair. I was elected to SPG Liaison-elect to the Board of Directors, was Liaison, and am now Immediate-past Liaison. I was on the Planning Committee for the 2008 Annual Meeting, sat on the Membership Recruitment and Retention Committee, and am currently on the AADE Grants Review Workgroup. These positions have allowed me to work with amazing diabetes educators and AADE staff members and have provided wonderful exposure to so many facets of diabetes education.

I am a HUGE proponent of exercise. To practice what I preach, I run every day (rain, snow, heat, cold…) and dabble in yoga and Pilates. I love to travel for leisure and business, which I do fairly often now as I teach weekend conferences to PTs on exercise for aging adults. Any Sunday afternoon I am in Syracuse, I go to a local coffee shop to relax and knit with a wonderful, eclectic group.


Recent Posts:

  • Volunteers are the Key to the Future

    By Karen Kemmis, PT, DPT, MS, CDE, FAADE | Jan 17, 2018

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    Karen Kemmis attended the 2018 Coordinating Bodies Leadership Program this past weekend. She was thrilled to see so many first-time attendees, and believes that new volunteer members will be the key in our future.

  • The 2018 Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes Are Here!

    By Karen Kemmis, PT, DPT, MS, CDE, FAADE | Dec 15, 2017

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    Karen Kemmis looks forward to the release of the Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes each year. Read the new standards and share them with your colleagues!

  • Spreading the Word During Diabetes Month

    By Karen Kemmis, PT, DPT, MS, CDE, FAADE | Nov 13, 2017

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    How are you spreading the word during National Diabetes Month? Blogger Karen Kemmis is giving two presentations, and will be wearing her blue circle lapel pin all week.

  • Cultivating Diabetes Educators

    By Karen Kemmis, PT, DPT, MS, CDE, FAADE | Oct 13, 2017

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    As the autumn harvest begins to stock shelves, Karen Kemmis is thinking about how to cultivate new diabetes educators. As with any fruitful harvest, one must first start with a seed.

  • Preparing for Disasters for the Person with Diabetes

    By Karen Kemmis, PT, DPT, MS, CDE, FAADE | Aug 31, 2017

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    Managing diabetes is complex even in perfect conditions, but how do we help patients prepare for disasters? Karen Kemmis discusses ways to help patients prepare for these situations.

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