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Physical Therapy Career

What Physical Therapy is About
Physical therapists help people develop, recover, or maintain their daily living capabilities by relieving their pain and helping them to increase or regain their strength and mobility. Physical therapists use methods such as mild physical exercise, water therapy, deep tissue massage therapy, strength training, and proper stretching to help treat patients. Physical therapy is helpful for people with physical disabilities or chronic pain, or people who have physical or developmental disabilities caused by birth defects, injuries, illnesses, or aging. Physical therapists also help people who are recovering from an injury and trying to regain strength and improve their range of motion and muscle flexibility. Doctors often refer patients to a physical therapist to be treated for conditions such as back pain, arthritis or to help in recovery from accidents, injuries, strokes or other illnesses.

To work as a physical therapist, you must have a master's degree or higher in physical therapy or a related field. Physical therapy programs take about two years of post-graduate study to complete and include courses in such things as biology, chemistry, physics, and anatomy, as well as specialized courses in topics such as biomechanics, exam procedures, therapy procedures, health and fitness, and nutrition. In a physical therapy program you will also learn about the healthy movement of the body and how to use different exercises and massage techniques to promote healing, reduce chance of further injury, and maximize the supply of nutrients and oxygen in the body through increased blood flow.

Physical Therapist Careers
As a physical therapist, you will be able to pursue your physical therapy career by seeking employment positions in private practices, hospitals, health clubs, or clinics. You may also find physical therapy jobs in nursing homes or rehabilitation centers, or as a freelance, licensed physical therapist.

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