Who Benefits From Physical Therapy?

When it comes to health and fitness, one treatment category for pain and mobility issues that many people overlook is physical therapy. In some places, it is often not a topic health professionals discuss with patients until they are facing rehab from surgery or injury. But, in places like Colorado where many locals live active lifestyles, doctors are huge advocates for physical therapy and will always do their best to find you the best physical therapy in Denver.

Physical therapy benefits a wide range of individuals and can be a highly effective aide in preventing injuries, as well as recovering and rehabilitation afterward. Here is a look at some groups of patients who can benefit from physical therapy during various forms of treatment. 

People with Injuries

The most common prescription for physical therapy comes as a result of an injury. It helps individuals recover from fractures, sprains, strains, and post-surgical rehabilitation, among other physical ailments.

Adding physical therapy to a treatment and recovery plan promotes healing, reduces pain, improves mobility, and restores strength and function. It uses methods and techniques that are safe and easy, allowing them to progress gradually as they heal, preventing further injury until the affected muscles and joints have recovered strength.

Individuals with Chronic Pain

Physical therapy can benefit those suffering from chronic pain conditions like arthritis, fibromyalgia, back pain, or repetitive strain injuries. Therapeutic exercises, manual therapy, and modalities like ultrasound or electrical stimulation can help alleviate pain and improve daily functioning, whether you participate in the short-term or long-term. 


Treatment options play a crucial role in sports medicine and rehabilitation. Athletes, whether professional or amateur, often rely on physical therapists to recover from sports-related injuries, enhance performance, prevent future injuries, and optimize their overall physical condition. Physical therapists can provide insights into the correct physical form you should use in a given sport and often work closely with entire teams.

Individuals With Neurological Conditions

Physical therapy is also valuable for people with neurological conditions like stroke, Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injuries, or cerebral palsy; it aims to improve balance, coordination, mobility, strength, and functional abilities. Continued practice of the exercises used in therapy can prolong strength and mobility in patients with these conditions. In addition, physical therapists can develop plans to progress the patients' strength further over time, improving long-term quality of life.

Individuals With Cardiovascular or Pulmonary Conditions

Another significant boon from physical therapy relates to patients with cardiovascular or pulmonary disorders, such as heart disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), or asthma. Treatment options include exercises, breathing techniques, and conditioning programs to enhance cardiovascular fitness and respiratory function.

Geriatric Population

Working with a qualified therapist is essential for older adults to maintain or regain independence, manage age-related conditions like osteoporosis or arthritis, prevent falls, and improve balance and mobility.

This process also addresses age-related issues like joint replacements and balance impairments. Beginning exercises targeting these focus areas at a younger age is also a great way to prolong physical capabilities later in life.

Pre and Postnatal Women

A less common group of people that can benefit are pregnant and postpartum women. Physical therapy helps manage pregnancy-related discomfort and pelvic pain while aiding women with childbirth preparation. 

After delivery, it aids in recovering strength as well as pelvic floor function. Furthermore, it can help patients address issues like diastasis recti. Therapists can also teach about protecting the muscles postpartum as women ease back into their fitness routines.

Individuals with Developmental Delays or Disabilities

Physical therapy is valuable for children or adults with developmental delays, congenital conditions, or disabilities. It focuses on enhancing motor skills, coordination, balance, and overall physical development, progressing them toward their normal strength and function goals.

People with Work-Related Injuries

Physical therapy assists individuals recovering from work-related injuries, such as repetitive strain injuries, back pain, or musculoskeletal disorders. It aims to restore function, prevent re-injury, and provide ergonomic education to improve workplace safety.

Those Seeking Overall Fitness and Wellness

Services are not limited to rehabilitation or specific conditions. It can benefit anyone seeking to improve their overall fitness, posture, flexibility, and strength and prevent injuries through personalized exercise programs and education.

Individuals with Balance and Gait Disorders

Individuals with balance issues and gait abnormalities, such as those caused by vestibular disorders, inner ear problems, or neurological conditions can benefit from professional help. Balance training, specialized exercises, and gait retraining can improve stability and reduce the risk of falls.

Post-Surgical Patients

The most common use for physical therapy is for patients facing post-surgical recovery. It helps individuals regain strength, mobility, and function after procedures like joint replacements, ligament repairs, or spinal surgeries. Physical therapists work closely with surgeons to design appropriate rehabilitation programs.

Individuals with Chronic Diseases

Physical therapy can benefit individuals with chronic diseases like diabetes, hypertension, or obesity. In these cases, Physical Therapy focuses on lifestyle modifications, exercise programs, and education to manage symptoms, improve cardiovascular health, and enhance overall well-being.

Those with Respiratory Conditions

One type of physical therapy, known as respiratory or pulmonary rehabilitation, benefits people with breathing conditions like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), cystic fibrosis, or post-pneumonia recovery. Breathing exercises, airway clearance techniques, and aerobic conditioning help improve lung function and quality of life.

Sufferers of Mental Health Conditions

Playing a supportive role in managing mental health conditions such as anxiety, depression, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), there are many related benefits to therapeutic services. They promote physical activity and relaxation techniques while incorporating movement-based interventions to improve mood and overall psychological well-being. Working closely with their therapist can also provide them with the knowledge and resources to practice these techniques at home.

People with Weight Management Goals

Physical therapy can be part of a comprehensive weight management program. It helps individuals incorporate physical activity into their routine, provides guidance on exercise and movement strategies, and assists in developing a healthy and sustainable lifestyle.

Individuals with Cancer

Physical therapy plays a supportive role in cancer care. It can help manage treatment side effects, alleviate pain, restore mobility and function, and improve overall physical well-being during and after cancer treatment.

People Experiencing Age-Related Mobility Changes

Individuals may experience mobility, flexibility, and strength reduction as they age. Physical therapy can assist in managing age-related conditions, such as osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, or degenerative disc disease, by providing exercises, manual therapy, and education to maintain function and independence.

The Bottom Line

The field of physical therapy is versatile and adaptable, aiming to improve the lives of people with various physical conditions and goals. Overall, physical therapy benefits people of all ages and physical conditions by reducing pain, promoting healing, restoring function, improving mobility, preventing future injuries, and enhancing the quality of life.