Physical therapy is the delivery of health care services by or under the direction of a physical therapist by means of education, the application of manual techniques, exercise and/or the use of modalities to promote an improvement or enhancement of one’s functional abilities. As such there are many different forms of physical therapy. Some, like Fall Prevention Therapy for Seniors, are preventative in nature, attempting to fortify ones body so a patient will be able to better support themselves, thus avoiding dangerous losses of balance or falls. Let’s go over a few of these variants, and in which way they differ.


A strengthening exercise when a contracting muscle neither shortens nor lengthens against a load. The contraction produces increase tension at a constant overall muscle length.


A strengthening exercise when a contracting muscle shortens against a constant load, such as lifting a weight.


A strengthening exercise that is performed at a constant speed and resistance.


Dynamic action resistance training using the stretch reflex to facilitate recruitment of additional motor units within the muscle: for example box jumping for legs.

Close kinetic chain

Any exercise in which the exercising body segment is attached to a fixed surface, such as the floor, at the distal end, requiring the entire limb to bear the resistance: for example, push-ups for the arms or squats for the legs.

Advanced training & conditioning

An exercise program that incorporates the whole body (legs, core/trunk, arms) in coordinated movements that relate to the patients life activity, work or sports needs.

Sports Performance Enhancement

Programs offered on and off-site that involve sport-specific movements, activities and drills to improve speed, power, agility and overall athletic ability. Changes in Vertical Leap, Standing Long Jump and foot speed is measured.


An oversized rubber band or tubing that comes in different colors and strength. Used in resistance training, stretching and therapeutic exercises.


Developed be Joseph H. Pilates to keep physically fit. A method of total body conditioning that emphasized proper alignment, centering, concentration, control, precision, breathing, and flowing movement that resulted in increased flexibility, strength, muscle tone, body awareness, energy, and improved mental concentration. These unique exercises use spring resistance.

Balance/Reaction time

Specific exercises and/ or computerized testing and training to improve balance control, gait stability and prevent falls.

Surface EMG

A computerized interface biofeedback system used to evaluate and treat muscle dysfunctions. The sensors can identify hyper and hypo activity in the muscle during activities of daily living. This allows the therapist to develop a strength and stretching routine to alleviate pain and fatigue from activity and improve postural awareness.


The act of balance recovery after being taken off balance.

Passive/Active ROM

Active Range of Motion is the motion about a joint a patient can perform actively without assistance. Passive Range of Motion is the range of motion that can be performed about a joint by the therapists with no help from patient.

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