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October Health News


National Physical Therapy Month

The American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) celebrates National Physical Therapy Month each October to raise awareness about the important role that physical therapists and physical therapy assistants play in healthcare.

This year's National Physical Therapy Month celebration focuses on sports injury prevention across the lifespan. Involvement in individual or team sports is important for people of all ages, and the benefits of physical fitness are well-known. Being active can help an individual maintain a healthy weight, reduce the risk of chronic conditions like cardiovascular disease or diabetes, and alleviate stress.

Whether you're a 12-year-old basketball player, a 37-year-old marathon runner, or a 65-year-old yogi, it's important to know your limits, to practice your sport properly, and to seek treatment for injury from experienced professionals in a center for rehabilitation services like Fox Chapel Physical Therapy. Our physical therapists can assess an athlete's injury and determine an individualized treatment plan to help reduce pain, promote healing, and prevent future injury. Using proven therapeutic techniques, our therapists give athletes every advantage physical therapy has to offer, enabling them to make a safe and healthy return to activity.

Physical Therapy's Origins

Physical therapy is recognized as an important component in rehabilitation from injury or surgery, the management of chronic conditions that affect the nervous and musculoskeletal systems, injury prevention, and sports performance enhancement. Like most advancements and specializations in medicine, the core techniques employed by physical therapists-such as heat and cold therapy and tissue mobilization-developed over the course of centuries. Physical therapy gained formal recognition in the United States in the early 20th century, when the effects of the polio epidemic and the rehabilitation of wounded soldiers returning home from World War I shed light on the importance of muscle testing, muscle re-education, and specialized rehabilitation training for healthcare workers.

Careers in Physical Therapy

Since the establishment of the "rehabilitation aide" training program through the Army Medical Department in 1917, physical therapy has become a popular field of study. Two hundred and six accredited Doctor of Physical Therapy programs exist in the United States, and there are currently more than 62,000 individuals registered as licensed physical therapy assistants. In 2008, Time magazine listed physical therapist as the sixth most recession-proof job, and in 2010, CNN listed physical therapy as the fourth most satisfying career in the United States.