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You are here: The Job Explorer > Job Description > Health Services > Physical Therapy Aide Responsibilities

Physical Therapy Aide Duties

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This is technical work in the application of a variety of physical therapeutic treatments to patients.

Work involves the responsibility for treating or assisting in the treatment of physical disabilities, injuries, and diseases through the use of a variety of therapeutic agents such as heat, light, electricity, water, and massage. Work involves the application of a physician's prescription in accordance with standard therapy practice. Work is performed under the direction or supervision of a registered Physical Therapist and is reviewed through observation of techniques employed and results obtained.


Administers treatment in all phases of therapeutic exercises such as passive, active, assistive and resistive exercises, muscle training, and gait training.

Massages patients for the purpose of sedation, stimulation, breaking down adhesions, or stretching contracted muscles.

Administers treatments using mechanical devices such as shoulder wheels, parallel bars, walking ramps, and steps.

Assists in administering heat, light, and electric therapy treatments by use of infra-red lamps, ultra violet lamps, low volt generators, short wave diathermy, and ultrasonic machines.

Assists in observing the reaction of patients and adjusting the length and intensity of the treatment to the needs of the individual patient; maintains a record of each patient treated, including a description of treatment given and evaluation of the patients' progress.

Gives patients special instructions for various home exercise programs utilizing home equipment for rehabilitation.

Adjusts and makes minor repairs to equipment and machinery.

Performs clerical functions such as preparation of monthly reports, requisitioning of supplies, making charges for treatment, and keeping daily records on patients.

Performs related work as required.


Graduation from a standard high school; and experience in physical therapy treatment; or any equivalent combination of training and experience.


Considerable knowledge of the principles, methods, materials, and equipment used in physical therapy.

Considerable knowledge of the possible hazards to patients during treatment and of necessary precautionary and remedial measures.

Some knowledge of anatomy and physiology sufficient to position patients for various types of treatments without harm.

Ability to determine the proper length and intensity for individual treatments.

Ability to demonstrate to patients and others the acceptable techniques in a wide variety of physical therapeutic treatments.

Ability to understand, interpret, and adapt a physician's written or oral direction for physical therapy.

Ability to make necessary working adjustments and minor repairs to standard physical therapy equipment.

Ability to maintain adequate records to established techniques.



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