Physical Therapy


Physical therapy is mainly concerned with providing remedies to problems such as physical impairments and disabilities and injuries. Physical therapists’ goals include enhancing the mobility, functional ability, and movement potential of your child. This enhances a patient’s quality of life. The treatment stages are examination, evaluation, diagnosis and determining and using the most appropriate physical intervention.

At Children’s Health℠, our physical therapists provide inpatient and outpatient services for young patients who have diverse medical, oncologic, neurologic, orthopedic and developmental-related conditions. Physical therapy is often applied alongside other rehabilitation services, such as occupational therapy.

Why Children's Health℠?

Children’s Health is the nation’s eighth-largest pediatric health care provider. For more than 100 years, Children’s Health has been dedicated to making life better for children afflicted with complex physical and mental conditions that require optimal care.

Recognitions validate our treatment approach and reflect our dedication to excellent health care and service. U.S. News & World Report, in its 2019-2020 “Best Children’s Hospitals” survey, named us as one of the top U.S. pediatric hospitals.

U.S. News & World Report ranks our pediatric orthopedics program as one of the best in the nation. We were rated “superior” in categories such as commitment to best practices, taking steps to engage families, the availability of full-time subspecialists, and our commitment to quality improvement. Our patient and procedure volumes are high.

We’ll tailor your child’s participation in our physical therapy program to his individual needs. We assure that your child will receive the highest levels of care. 

Conditions We Treat

Diagnoses treated and services offered in our department include:

  • Cerebral palsy
  • Spina bifida
  • Brain tumor
  • Traumatic and anoxic brain injury
  • Brachial plexus injury
  • Non-healing or poorly healing wounds
  • Hemophilia
  • Bone tumors
  • Torticollis
  • Orthopedic injury
  • Amputation of upper or lower extremity
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Gait abnormalities
  • Cerebral vascular accident
  • Developmental delay
  • Musculoskeletal injuries
  • Equipment evaluations
  • Contracture management
  • Upper extremity injuries
  • Sensory integration/sensory motor deficits
  • Visual/motor/perceptual development
  • Congenital limb discrepancy and acquired amputations

Procedures Performed

Procedures and treatments performed include:

  • Pediatric neurodevelopmental treatment
  • Gait training
  • Hydrotherapy and wound care
  • Lower extremity splinting and serial casting
  • Strengthening and conditioning exercises
  • Joint mobilization
  • Balance and coordination exercises
  • Adaptive equipment evaluation (walkers, standing frames, wheelchairs)

Equipment and technology deployed include:

  • Electrical stimulation
  • Biofeedback
  • Ultrasound
  • Thermal modalities

We also provide you and your child with comprehensive patient and family education.

Physical Therapy

Pediatric physical therapists specialize in the early detection, diagnosis, treatment, and management of infants, children, and adolescents who suffer a variety of congenital, developmental, neuromuscular, skeletal, or acquired disorders.

These treatments can improve a child’s gross and fine motor skills, balance and coordination, strength and endurance, as well as cognitive and sensory processing and integration. Specific conditions we treat include developmental delays, cerebral palsy and spina bifida, among many others.

Our pediatric physical therapists are specially trained in casting and splinting techniques for the lower extremities. This means the need for surgical lengthening of tight muscles around the ankle and knee can be prevented or delayed.

Also, Children’s Health is committed to preventing pediatric injuries. Our physical therapy staff works in conjunction with the occupational therapy, trauma and injury prevention departments to provide specialized car safety restraints for children who temporarily cannot use normal safety seats due to casts or halo devices. Our team also provides innovative wound care in a child-friendly environment. The equipment we use is specially designed and sized for children, so your child won’t feel overwhelmed or frightened by the advanced tools that we use.