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6 Physical Therapy Myths Debunked

    Ever heard of a famous sportsperson getting physical therapy? Does someone in your family or friend circle also go for regular physiotherapy sessions? Then you must know what it is. 

    While recently, there has been an ever-rising demand for physical therapy, some myths remain about the procedure. But this article will debunk them for you! Keep reading to know what exactly is true and  what is a hoax when it comes to physical therapy. And once you’ve read it all, decide whether or not you want physiotherapy. 

    Physical therapy is effective in injuries and accidents

    People believe that physical therapy is required only if you sustain an injury or after you’ve undergone surgery. Physical therapists do more than just strengthening weak muscles after an injury. 

    They are skilled professionals that diagnose other potential problems. And if underlying issues are affecting your body movement or giving you pain, they can treat those as well. 

    Also, seeking physical therapy does not necessarily mean you have an injury or are already in an impaired physical condition. Because it helps you achieve good body mobility and fitness, Opt for it even without a severe injury. However, physical therapy is most helpful in relieving chronic pain. 

    You need a referral from a physician to see a physical therapist

    70% of people seeking physical therapy believe that they require a referral or prescription to undergo physical therapy. This is not the case. You need not have a doctor’s prescription to visit a physical therapist. See one just like you visit a doctor and undergo therapy without the risk of persisting in an injury. 

    While you do not need the referral in most cases, some states in the US have restrictions about visiting a physical therapist. Browse APTA’s direct access summary chart for you to check the limits in your state.

    Physical therapy is painful

    Another common misconception about physical therapy is it being painful. Despite never having sought physical therapy themselves, people believe that it can lead to pain. But that’s not true at all! 

    Physical therapists are skilled and trained to help decrease pain and improve function and mobility. Their aim is to minimize pain, whether chronic or long-term. Treatments might get a little uneasy when dealing with painful injuries. But a good physical therapist will try to reduce the discomfort throughout the session. 

    The Spine & Rehab Group provides excellent physical therapy services specializing in back pain, neck pain, and knee pain. Their physiotherapists ensure minimal pain for you during sessions. Plus, they customize the therapy according to your preferences and requirements. 

    Physical therapy is equivalent to exercise

    NO. Physical therapy is not a substitute for exercise. Nor is it equivalent. Physical therapy might incorporate exercise into the treatment plan. However, it isn’t meant to do everything regular exercise does. 

    Most times, physical therapy is administered either due to a disease/injury or to prevent future discomfort for a patient at risk. The exercises target particular areas of the body. 

    Many treatment techniques like joint manipulation, joint mobilization, trigger point needling, muscle energy techniques are included in physiotherapy. All these are carefully carried out by the therapist to ensure the best treatment. But none of these provide your body a workout as exercise does. 

    A physical therapist is the same as a physical trainer

    While in some areas, a physical therapist and a physical trainer may overlap, they are two different professions. A physical therapist is trained to minimize pain and rehabilitate an injury. But a physical trainer isn’t qualified to evaluate, diagnose or provide treatment to an injury.

    A physical trainer too assesses your body to develop an exercise plan. But the exercise isn’t aimed at pain relief or treatment in any manner. It might instead target mobility, weight loss, etc.  

    Exercise training provided by a physical trainer isn’t the same as the one prescribed by physiotherapists. The latter involves medical expertise and patient needs. And the former is a part of training.  

    You’re entirely healed after you’ve completed the physical therapy

    For overall health, you should continue with the activity plan provided by your physical therapist even after the completion of your therapy. 

    A periodic consultation from your physical therapist will help you sustain the treatment’s effects. So, just because your therapy has ended, you cannot be carefree about your body. In fact, you must take extra care of the part for which you were undergoing therapy to prevent repetitive damage.


    These were the 6 common myths about physical therapists that might’ve plagued you too. While injuries and accidents are not preventable, you can definitely reduce your pain by periodically attending physical therapy sessions. And now that you’ve had your myths debunked, nothing is stopping you from booking an appointment with a trained physiotherapist right away!