Ever wonder what it’s like to be a physical therapist? Want to get a better idea of a day in the life of a PT? Well you’re in luck, because in today’s blog, we take a closer look at a normal day in the life of a physical therapist so that you can get a better idea of what our team does for our clients each day.
Daily PT Schedule
One fun thing about being a physical therapist is that no two days are ever the same. Sure, they may follow a similar structure, but even if you’re only seeing patients you’ve worked with in the past on a given day, they are all at different points in their rehab, so care plans are always shifting. Here’s a look at a general schedule for one of our physical therapists.
- First Hour Of The Day – Some physical therapists are ready to see clients right when we open, while others see most of their clients in the afternoon, so instead of putting a specific time to this schedule, we’ll just stick with the first hour the PT is at the clinic. During this time, they are reviewing the client list for the day, ensuring therapy areas and equipment that will be used are cleaned, reviewing previous session notes and developing therapy plans for the patients they’ll see that day.
- Morning Hours – After the prep period, patients start arriving for therapy. Returning patients will be quickly reassessed and many will pick up where they left off with their physical therapist. There will likely be a mix of hands-on treatment and guided exercises that will be performed throughout the sessions, which typically last anywhere from 30-75 minutes. During this time, PTs will be writing notes and documenting your progress so that they can continue to develop the right rehabilitation plan for your needs.
- Lunch – After roughly 3-5 patients, a physical therapist breaks for lunch before diving into their afternoon sessions.
- Afternoon Hours – After lunch, physical therapists will continue to see patients that are on their schedule. If the patient is a returning patient, the same schedule posted in the morning hours section will be followed. If a PT is seeing a patient for the first time, the schedule will look a little different. These first sessions are generally a little bit longer, but that’s because they will include a chart review of the medical history, some direct questions to the patient about their injury and symptoms, and a baseline assessment where you’ll perform some maneuvers and the PT will manually adjust areas of your body to see how you respond. The PT will then ask the patient about their goals and discuss a realistic timeline for recovery before developing a therapy outline.
- Last Hour Of The Day – The last part of the day is typically a time when a PT will not see any patients. Instead, they’ll use this time to update the progress of their patients and flesh out some of the notes they took during the session. This will help them prepare for their next meeting with the patient and ensure that patients are progressing as expected compared to their projected timeline. PTs will also return equipment and clean any areas that they used to ensure it is ready for whoever needs it next.
If that sounds like a work schedule that you’d be interested in, we urge you to consider becoming a PT! And if you’re interested in working with one of our physical therapists after an injury or surgery, let us fit you into our schedule by calling our clinic at (612) 339-2041.