Meet Dr. Karen Bagley (she/her), Momentum's Founder

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I've been a runner since elementary school. I fell in love with the way it felt, the way I could challenge myself and others to see how good I could be. But at times I struggled too, feeling anxious about how I would do and whether my "good" would be "good enough." These struggles played a crucial role in my interest in mental health generally, and sport psychology more specifically. I have a different relationship with running, and with life, than I once did, balancing ambition with acceptance. It is my goal to help my clients find that balance, too.

I took a road slightly less traveled on my way to becoming a psychologist, one that included roles as a researcher, consultant, and educator. These experiences conducting program evaluations, public health and diversity-related research, and teaching undergraduate and graduate level courses have given me opportunities to explore and understand ways that larger scale systems and concerns can affect individual and group wellbeing, as well as facilitate knowledge development and growth in the people with whom I am working. My unconventional path also helps me appreciate what it means to be uncertain and trying to figure out how to take the next steps to get to where you want to be.​​

In over 15 years of experience as a therapist, I have worked in many settings, including a university, a VA Medical Center, and community-based mental health practices before founding Momentum Psychology and Performance. In each environment, my goal has been to create an open space where I can work genuinely and collaboratively with clients on understanding and addressing their concerns. My approach is integrative in nature, drawing on humanistic, cognitive-behavioral, and insight-oriented orientations as I help clients develop approaches to more well-adjusted living and optimal performance. Throughout all of my experiences, I have maintained an interest in and focus on working with people of color and LGBTQ+ folks and understanding the role that their social and cultural identities play in their lives.

Some additional things you may want to know about me...

  • Licensed by the Board of Psychology for in-person services and teletherapy in Virginia and for teletherapy in these states via the Psychology Interjurisdictional Compact (PSYPACT)

  • Award-winning therapist (2019 Haymarket/Gainesville Lifestyle Magazine)

  • Some of my thoughts on the benefits of running in this Self magazine article

  • PhD in clinical psychology from George Mason University

  • Member of American Psychological Association, Association for Applied Sport Psychology, and Virginia Academy of Clinical Psychologists

  • Master of Public Health from Johns Hopkins University, BA in biology from the University of Pennsylvania