Physical Therapy Assessment

Physical Therapy Assessment

Your child has been referred for a physical therapy assessment.  The assessment will be completed by a physical therapist (PT for short).  Physical therapists have graduated from accredited physical therapy programs and hold either a bachelor’s, master’s, or doctorate degree in PT.

In general, physical therapists are concerned with a child’s ability to participate in movement activities such as crawling, walking, running, playing games and participating in sports. PT’s use a variety of fun and therapeutic methods to engage children in activities that will improve strength, endurance, coordination, balance, flexibility, posture, body awareness and gait.

Physical therapists can also help children who rely on mobility devices learn to navigate safely in various environments and assess the need for other durable medical equipment and orthotics. Our physical therapists want to help children reach optimal independence and adequate physical functioning at home, at school, on the playground and in their communities.  PT’s help teach parents how to continue their child’s care at home to help them develop even further.

Any number of things can cause a child to have difficulty in these areas.  Therefore, a PT assessment will look at the underlying things that can interfere with success.  These areas may include an assessment of:

  • Gross motor development
  • Strength and power
  • Joint range of motion
  • Neuromuscular function and muscle tone
  • Movement patterns
  • Postural control
  • Balance and coordination
  • Pre-gait and gait training
  • Endurance
  • Equipment and orthotic needs

Your child’s particular assessment will be determined based on the information you provide to the therapists and will most likely include observation of play and movement, an interview with parents, and may or may not include standardized testing.

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