Physiotherapy (PT) helps with the development, rehabilitation, and improvement of movement skills and performance. Physiotherapists may work on gross motor skills such as sitting, standing, and walking, as well as improvement in flexibility, strength, and endurance.
For example, a child might work with a therapist in a “gross motor” gym by walking across a beam and doing core strengthening to improve their balance or crawl through a ball pit to build strength, endurance and body awareness.
For an infant with Torticollis/Plagiocephaly (neck tightness and head shape challenges), the parents and child will meet with the therapist to work on stretching and positioning exercises. The parents can learn how to position the child for day-to-day activities like sitting in a car seat and sleeping. A child learning to walk can be taken through exercises to encourage standing and develop the skills required for walking. Parents may be given a home program to work on these skills at home.
In all cases, the physiotherapist takes the client through a tailor-made program to address their most important needs.
Physiotherapy is often used in conjunction with other therapies, such as occupational therapy or speech-language pathology. For example, if a child is learning how to print and is slouching at the table, it can be a sign of poor core strength—physiotherapy can help with the core strength while occupational therapy teaches printing.