SOCHi: Preparing Graduates for Careers in Physical Therapy and Sports Rehab
While physical therapy schools are busy training physical therapists in order to keep up with demand from an aging population, more people are also considering careers as physical therapy aides. Physical therapy aides are responsible for many essential tasks in physical therapy environments, including keeping therapy areas clean and organized, setting up and taking down equipment, assisting patients into and out of therapy areas, and performing record-keeping and clerical tasks.
Being a physical therapy aide is both challenging and rewarding.
A person who wants to become a physical therapy aide should be generally fit, with good ability to bend, kneel, and lift. In addition, he or she should have strong social and communication skills, since much of an aide’s time is spent interacting with physical therapy clients and other office staff. Good organizational skills and the ability to take care of administrative tasks are additional characteristics physical therapy facilities look for in their physical therapy aides.
Common Work Settings for Physical Therapy Aides
The most likely workplace for a physical therapy aide is in the office of a health practitioner, whether that’s a physician practice or a physical therapy practice. Physical therapy aides may also work in hospitals, nursing care facilities, and specialty facilities, such as facilities for physical rehabilitation. Some industries hire physical therapy aides for their on-site workforce, including corporations, schools, and residential facilities for the disabled. Home healthcare services hire physical therapy aides, in which case services are delivered in client homes. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, corporations, educational facilities, and residential facilities are the highest paying industries for this occupation.
Why the Job Outlook for Physical Therapy Aides Is So Good?
As the general population of the United States ages, physical therapy schools will train an increasing number of physical therapists to keep up with demand. Another factor prompting increased enrollment in physical therapy schools is the trend toward more health insurance coverage nationwide. As demand for physical therapists increases, so will the demand for physical therapy aides. An aging population means more people requiring physical therapy services for heart attack and stroke rehabilitation, and an increase in the proportion of Americans with insurance is expected to boost demand for physical therapy services across the board, for those recovering from many types of accidents or illnesses.
Cities and States With High Demand for Physical Therapy Aides
In general, parts of the country with higher urban populations experience more demand for physical therapy aides, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. California, Texas, Florida, New York and Illinois, for example, employ high numbers of physical therapy aides. As for specific cities where demand for physical therapy aides is high, top employers include the Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale metropolitan area, the Santa Ana-Anaheim-Irvine metropolitan area, the greater Chicago region, the New York City region, Dallas, Baltimore, and Philadelphia.
Training to Become a Physical Therapy Aide
At Southern California Health Institute (SOCHi), the Physical Therapy Aide / Sports Rehab program offers training in physical therapy techniques, sports rehabilitation, and massage therapy. The integrated wellness approach trains students in the use of physical therapy equipment as well as treatment of back and limb disorders with medical massage. Students also receive training in anatomy, physiology, kinesiology, pathology, and event-rehabilitative sports massage, plus CPR and first aid certification.
A dynamic mix of classroom and hands-on instruction ensures that students develop a thorough understanding of the techniques they will use as physical therapy aides or sports rehab aides. The program also prepares students to sit for the MBLEX Exam and the voluntary certification exam from the California Massage Therapy Council.
Southern California Health Institute (SOCHi) prepares students for careers in the growing Health and Wellness industry, which is projected to be a trillion dollar a year industry by 2017. In addition to programs for physical therapy aides and sports rehab aides, SOCHi offers programs in Advanced Professional Massage Therapy, Personal Fitness Instruction, and Medical Billing and Coding. If you would like to learn more, we invite you to contact us at any time. We would be happy to speak with you and answer any questions you may have.