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Physical Therapy Services

Physical Therapy

CTA offers traditional, pediatric physical therapy very similar to what you would find in any outpatient hospital-based clinic or Medical Therapy Unit. In addition, we borrow some components of intensive physical to enhance treatment as indicated (if families are interested). One such component is the use of the Universal Exercise Unit (a system of pulleys, ropes, straps, and weights, and is designed to facilitate selective strength training).

Intensive Physical Therapy

The Intensive Physical Therapy model is based on principals of improving measurable gross motor function via strength training, and achieving motor learning through practice and repetition. We incorporate specialized equipment into this program, such as the Universal Exercise Unit and the Therasuit when indicated, in order to isolate muscle groups for highly specific motor learning and strengthening, and to provide an environment where a child feels safe pushing the limits of their physical abilities.

A typical or intensive physical therapy session with Children's Therapy Associates may consist of the following, as appropriate:

Warm-up – This can include the use of moist hot packs and soft tissue mobilization, as well as sensory massage, and stretching.

Strengthening – We use various techniques in order to help increase selective muscle strength and motor control. This may include exercises that have little to no resistance, body-weight resistance, resistance with the use of small weights, or weighted assistance (to remove the challenge of moving against gravity or across a surface when muscles are first learning to 'turn on.')

Sensory, Balance, and Weight-Bearing Exercises - We use a system of belts and bungee cords within the frame of the Universal Exercise Unit to create an environment where a child can learn from trial and error. These activities build a foundation for targeting balance and coordination training, and increasing independence with postural stability, functional mobility, and/or transitional skills such as crawling, kneeling, transfers, standing, stair climbing, etc. Mat Activities and Mobility (Gait) Training - Mobility training can mean anything from rolling toward a stimulus, to crawling, to pedaling an adaptive bicycle in a purposeful direction, to walking with or without an assistive device. This may include use of the TheraSuit or a number of other assistive/compressive garments for enhanced sensory input and integration as well as improved alignment and posture as needed.