Physical Therapy FAQ

This list of frequently asked questions are primarily related to the ‘Physical Therapy Web’ site, though some general physical therapy questions are included as well. The questions are compiled from those that have been sent in over the years. If you have a question that doesn’t appear in the list, please feel free to contact us.

What is physical therapy?

“Physiotherapy (also known as physical therapy) is a health profession concerned with the assessment, diagnosis and treatment of disease and disability through physical means. It is based upon principles of medical science, and is generally held to be within the sphere of conventional (rather than alternative) medicine. ”

— borrowed from Wikipedia

I’m interested in a career in physical therapy. How do I get started?

Check out our ‘Becoming a Physical Therapist‘ article. It contains information on what it means to be a physical therapist and what to do to get into a physical therapy school.

What is a Physical Therapist Assistant?

For information on this, please see the following page:
What is a Physical Therapist Assistant?

What is a Physical Therapist Aide?

For information on this, please see the following page:
What is a Physical Therapist Aide?

What is Therapeutic Ultrasound?

Therapeutic ultrasound is a modality used by physical therapists primary to promote healing by increasing the blood flow to an area of the body. For a more complete explanation, please see the following page:
Therapeutic Ultrasound in Physical Therapy

What is Shockwave Therapy?

Shockwave therapy is an electrotherapeuitic modality used by physical therapists to promote tissue healing via microtrauma caused by high energy acoustic pulses. For a more complete explanation, please see the following page: Shockwave Therapy / Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy (ESWT)

Where did this site get it’s original name ‘Physical Therapy Web Space’?

The name ‘Web Space’ was actually intended to be a clever play on words. While studying for gross anatomy class back in physical therapy school I came across the term ‘web space’ in reference to the area of skin between the fingers, particularly between the index finger and the thumb. At about the same time I was creating the original incarnation of this ‘web’ site and thought the name would be an appropriate and amusing double entendre. Unfortunately it seems I was the only one to think so. Either nobody else in the physio world picked up on the connection or everyone thought the joke to be too lame to acknowledge. Not very clever at all I suppose. Regardless, the name has stuck.

Can I post a job opening on this site?

No, we do not currently list job openings on the site.

Can I post a resume on this site?

At this time we are not accepting resumes from physical therapists. We will consider maintaining a database of user resumes if there is enough demand. Please contact us if you would be interested in such a service.

Can I request that you list my site on Physical Therapy Web?

You certainly can, and are encouraged to do so. On each page of links there is a form at the bottom for suggesting links. Please use this form for submitting your site from the appropriate page. We do request that you provide a reciprocal link back to this site from yours.

What does AAROM mean?

AAROM is an abbreviation for Active Assisted Range of Motion, a term commonly used by physical therapists to refer to physical movements through the normal or available range of motion with assistance. The assistance can be provided by a therapist or by the patient themselves through the use of devices, such as towels, pulleys or other assistive device.

What does AROM mean?

AAROM is an abbreviation for Active Range of Motion, a term commonly used by physical therapists to refer to physical movements through the normal or available range of motion with assistance. The assistance can be provided by a therapist or by the patient themselves through the use of devices, such as towels, pulleys or other assistive device.

What does AROM mean?

AROM is an abbreviation for Active Range of Motion, a term commonly used by physical therapists when referring to the range of movement through which a patient can actively (without external assistance) move a joint using the muscles adjacent to the joint.

What does PROM mean?

PROM is an abbreviation for Passive Range of Motion, a term commonly used by physical therapists when referring to moving a body part through it’s available range without the activation of the patient’s muscles. The movement itself is performed by an external source such as a physical therapist.

What does “varus” mean?

Varus refers to an inward angulation of the distal segment of a bone or joint. For example, a person with both knees with varus would is sometimes referred to as ‘bow-legged’.

What does “valgus” mean?

Valgus refers to an outward angulation of the distal segment of a bone or joint. For example, a person with both knees with valgus is sometimes referred to as ‘knock-kneed’.

What does “HEP” mean?

HEP is short for ‘Home Exercise Program’. View our list of Exercise Prescription Software often used for creating home exercise programs.

What is “bursitis”?

Bursitis is the inflammation of a bursa, typically one in the knee, elbow or shoulder.

What is a “bursa”?

A bursa is a fluid-filled sac or saclike cavity, especially one countering friction at a joint.

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