Physical therapy provides services to patients to restore maximum movement and functional ability throughout the lifespan. This includes providing services in circumstances where movement and function are threatened by ageing, injury, diseases, disorders, conditions or environmental factors. Functional movement is central to what it means to be healthy.
Physical therapy is concerned with identifying and maximizing quality of life and movement potential within the spheres of promotion, prevention, treatment/intervention, habilitation and rehabilitation. This encompasses physical, psychological, emotional, and social wellbeing. Physical therapy involves the interaction between the physical therapist, patients/clients, other health professionals, families, care givers and communities in a process where movement potential is assessed and goals are agreed upon, using knowledge and skills unique to physical therapists.
The physical therapist’s extensive knowledge of the body and its movement needs and potential is central to determining strategies for diagnosis and intervention. The practice settings will vary according to whether the physical therapy is concerned with health promotion, prevention, treatment/intervention, habilitation or rehabilitation.