Do I Want To Become A Physical Therapist Or Physical Therapist Assistant?

The field of physical therapy is a popular field and there doesn’t seem a day go by that someone doesn’t ask me about the field and, the education involved in becoming either a Physical Therapist or a Physical Therapist Assistant.

Now I understand everyone has different circumstances in life. Age is one reason for instance you will want to consider what educational track you choose.

When I get approached by a young adult in their early twenties or even younger for instance and, they ask about a Physical Therapist Assistant job, I always like to find out why go to school for a PTA when, in fact they should strongly consider going to school to become a Registered Physical Therapist.

I like to see young people think bigger. At that age many younger people do not have the obligations that older adults have at home and, have the energy and if the desire is there, to go through four to six years of college and still graduate at a young age.

I have been a PTA now for over 18 years. In my estimation people like myself and many others who went back to school after 35 years of age, the Physical Therapist Assistant program is a great choice. the Physical Therapist Assistant educational track is for those middle-aged adults who either do not want to invest six more years of college or have too many other family obligations to meet as well.

Many like myself made physical therapy a second career choice after serving many years in another profession. Many PTAs that I know came into the field at a later age and also came into the field with extensive work and life experience.

If I had not chosen to go to work in the corporate world at a young age only to find out years later that was not my calling, I would have gone on to Physical Therapy school to start with.

What you find as a Physical Therapist Assistant, is that your options to advance in the field are limited. For instance once you become a PTA, to go on to further your education to become a PT is almost non-existent. You have two options by taking weekend courses in either a college in Ohio or in California.

That is not good. So my advice is this, In your twenties go on to PT school. You will have more doors open to you if you want to advance in the profession. For those of you that again want a career change and are a little older and, enjoy the field of rehabilitative medicine then consider going on to PTA school.