A software engineer with a severe back pain, an elderly lady having paralysis, a middle aged man after suffering heart attack, a cerebral palsy child who cannot walk properly or a young man after a recent fracture will meet a professional who surely, steadily and happily guide them through their toughest time in life with a smile. He / She is the Physical Therapist (Physiotherapist), working day in and day out to achieve movement and pain free lives for their patients.
On 8th September Physical therapy Day is celebrated worldwide. This can be marked as an opportunity to spread awareness about physiotherapy and applaud the efforts of these professionals. Spinalogy Clinic celebrates this day every year to commemorate the contribution of Physiotherapists in making patient pain free and function normally. Also a free physiotherapy consultation camp is organized in clinic on this day.
The origins of physical therapy as a professional group date back to Per Henrik Ling who founded the Royal Central Institute of Gymnastics (RCIG) in 1813 for massage, manipulation, and exercise. Other countries soon followed. In 1894 four nurses in Great Britain formed the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy. In 1921 APTA (American Physical Therapy Association) was formed. World War I and II saw an increase in practice and spread of physical therapy as a profession and many parent bodies were formed to organize this profession.
Physiotherapy entered late in India and spread slowly. Today there are more than 6000 practicing physiotherapists in India which is much below the required ratio. However, people seeking physiotherapy treatment are very few as it is not a direct contact practice in India unlike many western countries.
Physical therapists are experts in developing and maintaining people’s ability to move and function throughout their lives. With an advanced understanding of how the body moves and what keeps it from moving well, they promote wellness, mobility and independence. They treat and prevent many problems caused by pain, illness, disability and disease, sport and work related injuries, ageing and long periods of inactivity. Physical therapists are educated over several years, giving them a full knowledge of the body’s systems and the skills to treat a wide range of problems.
Physiotherapists can specialize in areas such as geriatrics, sports, pediatrics, orthopedics, women’s health. Whichever area they may be in the role of the physical therapist is to improve and restore motion to people’s lives. Physical therapists:
- Significantly improve mobility to perform daily activities;
- Provide an alternative to painful and expensive surgery, in many cases;
- Manage or eliminate pain without medication and its side effects
With this thought we wish all the physical therapists around the world and in India a Happy Physical therapy day. Movement is life, Life is movement!