Explore these career paths for a physical therapist assistant
If you like to be physically active, use your hands and engage directly with many different people, a traditional office job may not be the right fit. Another option to consider is a career that offers you flexibility to get out from behind the desk: For example, by pursuing your physical therapy degree at a career or trade school to begin a career as a physical therapist assistant (PTA).
What might this look like? In this career, you’ll work closely with teams of physical therapists, physical therapy aides and other PTAs to provide one-on-one care for patients who have an injury or illness that is limiting their range of motion.
PTA jobs are predicted to climb 31 percent through 2026, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in a variety of different work environments. See what type of jobs you could work in when you graduate with a physical therapy degree.
Physical and occupational therapy offices
One of the most popular work environments for physical therapy assistants is in outpatient physical therapy offices. Typically, these clinics are private practices where PTAs work closely with physical therapists who lead the programs. This fast-paced setting also features all the necessary exercise and therapy equipment patients need in order to rehabilitate injuries or ailments.
On the job, PTAs assist the physical therapists with specific exercises and treatments. They can also expect to work directly with patients in a physically active manner through exercises and other techniques.
Sports-related injuries require plenty of therapy and rehabilitation time in order to heal. PTAs help to shorten the recovery time, which is very important to athletes working hard to get back in the game. Recently, athletes have started to add pre-rehabilitation treatments in order to prevent any future injuries.
This work environment is an exciting one for PTAs because you are able to promote a healthy lifestyle by assisting athletes in their goals. If you enjoy athletics and are inspired by sports, this could be a great fit for your future career.
When individuals suffer from a physical disability caused by injury, illness or surgery, they can opt to have their physical therapy done from the comfort of their own homes. PTAs who work in a home healthcare environment are expected to implement the treatment plans established by a physical therapist in collaboration with the patient and his or her family.
PTAs who work in home healthcare environments have a new “office” with each patient they treat. This career path allows you to have plenty of freedom and control over your work schedule, as you will be the one managing your visits. If a flexible schedule is important to you, home healthcare could be the perfect fit. If a you’re interested in getting your physical therapy degree, visit Professional Skills Institute to find out more about our Physical Therapist Assistantprogram.