Patient Information

What is A Physical Therapist?


A Physical Therapist (PT) is a specialist in the examination and treatment of musculoskeletal and neuromuscular problems that affect your ability to move and function as well as you can in your daily life.  Physical Therapists are professional health care providers who are licensed by the state in which they practice.  You can check with the State of Washington Health Professional Quality Assurance Division to make sure that your Physical Therapist is licensed and in good standing.

 The cornerstones of Physical Therapy treatment are therapeutic exercise and functional movement training.  In addition, PTs are trained in “hands-on” care and will guide you in self-care with a home exercise program.  Only licensed Physical Therapists or Physical Therapy Assistants under the guidance of a PT can provide “Physical Therapy”. 

Examples of problems a Physical Therapist can assist you with resolving are:

  • Back/neck pain (for example, car accidents)
  • Sports & running related injuries (for example, tendonitis, heel pain)
  • Balance/Fall Prevention 
  • Post-surgical rehabilitation (for example, shoulder/knee surgeries 
  • Repetitive strain injuries (for example, rotator cuff injuries, carpel tunnel syndrome) 
  • Work-related injuries
  • Pelvic floor rehabilitation (for example, post partun, post prostectomy)
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