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Physical Therapy

Physical therapists employ a variety of treatments to help people who have lost physical mobility through accident or disease. They also work to control pain and limit the damage caused by injury. Treatments may include therapeutic exercise, electro stimulation, and deep tissue massage. This is highly-skilled professional work, and the education and training requirements are correspondingly thorough.

If you aspire to a career as a physical therapist, you will require both to graduate from an accredited degree program and also to pass a licensure examination. Your physical therapist education will start with general science courses such as biology and chemistry. You will then move on to more specialized courses in biomechanics, neuroanatomy, and therapeutic techniques. Accredited colleges must offer degree programs to at least master’s level. Many also offer doctoral-level physical therapy degrees. Your degree program will combine classroom and laboratory work with supervised clinical experience. After you have earned your degree, and your license, you can expect to undertake continuing education. Indeed some States demand this as a condition of licensure.

As a physical therapist you might find yourself administering treatment in a variety of locations. You could work in a hospital or clinic, or the office of another healthcare professional. You might work on a self-employed basis, with your own private practice. Some physical therapists teach in colleges and do scientific research. Physical therapists can expect a high demand for their services in view of the healthcare needs of an aging population.

Publish date: February 10, 2011