Pre-Physical Therapy: Reasons to Get a College Prep Program for Your Physical Therapist Career

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Physical therapists play a vital role in the healthcare field, helping patients regain maximum functionality after an injury or illness. Given the nature of the role, you need to have physical stamina, strong communication skills, and adequate treatment and equipment knowledge.

To prepare you for the rigorous path ahead, you can take a pre-physical therapy program before your graduate studies. This isn’t a college major but instead a program track designed for students who plan to pursue physical therapy in graduate school. Read more about this career below to understand why you should get a pre-physical therapy college prep program.

What is Physical Therapy?

Physical therapy (PT) is a healthcare profession that evaluates and treats individuals with health or medical concerns compromising their movement and physical function. Through therapeutic exercises and movement training, PTs help patients relieve pain, restore mobility, and enhance their range of motion to improve their quality of life.

Why Choose Physical Therapy as a Career? 

So, what makes PT a promising career? Here are just some of the main reasons you should pursue this path:

  • Impact

Being a PT is highly impactful because it allows you to make a difference in people’s lives. You help patients perform daily activities and reach their full potential by working with patients to restore their mobility. On top of this, the great thing about PT is you can see the actual progress of your work. For example, patients may return for a follow-up visit feeling better, which tells you that your treatment had an impact. 

  • Job Security

Another significant advantage of the PT career is job security, given the high and growing demand for these professionals. The BLS also forecasts that employment for PTs will increase by 21% from 2020 to 2030. This rate is much faster than the average, so you’ll have plenty of opportunities to explore once you enter the job market.

  • Work Flexibility

As a PT, you have lots of flexibility with your work setting, schedule, and type of patient handled. Aside from hospitals, you can also work in rehabilitation centers, schools, gyms, and nursing homes. This exposure allows you to grow, hone your craft, and discover your main interests.

Reasons to Get a College Prep PT Program

Like other healthcare professions, PT has extensive educational requirements. So if you want to ensure you’re ready by the time you finish, it’s best to take a pre-physical therapy college prep program. Take note that this isn’t an undergraduate major but more of a concentrated track to help you later when you enroll in graduate school. 

While not necessarily required, here are the top reasons you should join a pre-physical therapy program:

Prepare Directly for a Physical Therapist Career 

As its name suggests, pre-physical therapy programs serve as an “entry-level” program that prepares you for a doctoral program in PT. They consist of prerequisite courses incorporated into your major—usually in a related field like Biology, Psychology, or Health Sciences. Through this program, you’ll have more success applying to graduate school since you have a solid foundation for a PT career.

Build Your Network 

A pre-physical therapy program allows you to build your network. You’ll meet new people and work with different stakeholders throughout your learning journey. This can prove handy in the long run as a vast network opens you up to career opportunities.

Gain Experience 

College prep programs also help you gain hands-on experience by exposing you to real PT settings. Some programs may include relevant activities like observation hours with professional PTs and fieldwork projects, where you can apply your learnings. Others grant you opportunities for internships, volunteering, or leadership in organizations. Regardless, any form of experience will give you an edge in your graduate school applications. 

Learn Directly From Experienced PT Professionals 

Finally, pre-physical therapy programs allow you to learn from PT professionals, who can give you valuable insights into the field. They’ve been through all the requirements to become licensed practitioners, so they’re the best people to provide you with advice on the PT program and career. By learning from them, you’ll know better about what to expect in graduate school. 

Best Places to Get a College Prep Program for Pre-Physical Therapy

If you’re interested in applying for a pre-physical therapy program, check out these places for opportunities:

Universities

Many universities allow you to take a pre-physical therapy program alongside your undergraduate major. One key advantage of this option is that some schools provide you with a guaranteed slot into their Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program after graduation. They also open you up to extracurricular opportunities like student organizations to hone your skills. 

Study Abroad Programs

If you want to step out of your comfort zone and experience something different, consider applying abroad for a pre-physical therapy program. You won’t be able to get these in a local program, so they’ll make you stand out more when applying for your DPT. Aside from the distinct advantages, a pre-PT program abroad exposes you to a cross-cultural context and allows you to learn international healthcare approaches.

Kickstart Your Physical Therapist Career with a Pre-Physical Therapy Program Abroad

Physical therapy is undoubtedly a lucrative and rewarding career, with a positive growth outlook and strong impact. But before you can start practicing, you’ll need to complete your education and license requirements. 

So to ensure you’re ready for this journey, Therapy Abroad has a pre-physical therapy college prep program in Thailand. This program provides you with the hands-on experience you won’t find in a classroom, equipping you with the knowledge and skills you need to succeed in your DPT and career. Call us today at 949-844-6211 for questions about the application.

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