BayGrass Institute

Listening with both hands

The BayGrass Institute, founded by Robert Cohen, M.A., P.T. and Jon Laking, M.A., P.T. exists to provide licensed or certified healthcare providers with continuing education in the many areas of manual therapy through interactive and hands-on sessions.

Bob and Jon were both trained to evaluate the entire person to identify all possible factors contributing to the person’s complaint. This process successfully identifies dysfunctions that are straight forward as well as those that may seem removed from the primary area of complaint, but may in fact drive the problem.

These global thought processes and skills are rarely taught in modern medical education. Modern medicine is often symptom-based, and when a patient’s symptoms are driven by a distant dysfunction, treatment may not provide resolution. We feel that this approach is effective for all types of patients and may hold the key for those people that are not getting good relief from their current treatment. These traditional manual therapy techniques have been successfully used for generations. The treatment rationale is supported by the basic sciences and current research.

We feel strongly in the value of this approach, and are working to foster its use by an increasing number of successful practitioners.


Why We Relate to BayGrass

As life-long residents of the Mid-Atlantic region, we have spent many hours on the water enjoying the riches of the Chesapeake Bay. We have always admired the bay grasses and the ease with which they move as they adapt to the forces placed upon them by the wind and the water while performing their key role in maintaining a healthy ecosystem. In order to thrive, bay grasses need to be able to adapt to ever-changing environments and conditions. The cells of the body also must be able to constantly adapt to properly function both locally, but also with all of their interrelated structures if they are to remain healthy. Accordingly, we think bay grasses are a perfect metaphor for how we want the body to behave physiologically.


Robert Cohen, M.A., P.T., Founder

Bob Cohen has been in private practice since 1996, helping patients achieve treatment success by working together to develop a program specific to their needs. Bob earned a B.S. in Physical Therapy from the University of Maryland at Baltimore and a M.A. in Exercise Physiology from the University of Maryland at College Park.

Jon Laking, M.A., P.T., Founder

Jon Laking founded his private practice, Laking Therapy Services, in 1997 and has served as a clinical instructor and faculty member at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. Jon earned a B.S. in Physical Therapy at the University of Maryland at Baltimore and a M.A. in Kinesiology at the University of Maryland, College Park.

Recent class offerings:

  • Manual Therapy to Re-establish Proper Fluid Dynamics To Improve Aberrant Physiology, Chronic Mechanical Dysfunction, and Health

  • Evaluation and Treatment of Pelvis and Lumbar Spine

  • Treatment of Respiratory System Disorders Using a Manual Therapy Approach

  • Treatment of the Skull – Face and Jaw

  • Treatment of the Skull and Related Structures

  • Palpation: Developing Sensitive Hands – The Art and Science Behind It

  • Treatment of the Autonomic Ganglia

  • Evaluation and Treatment of the Upper Extremity

  • Evaluation and Treatment of the Thoracic Cage

  • Treating The Upper And Lower Cervical Spine

  • Incorporating Chapman’s Neurolymphatic Reflexes Into A Manual Therapy Practice

View our upcoming classes at


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