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Physical Therapist Aide

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Life As a Physical Therapist Aide

Occupation Description Under close supervision of a physical therapist or physical therapy assistant, perform only delegated, selected, or routine tasks in specific situations. These duties include preparing the patient and the treatment area.

Daily Life Of a Physical Therapist Aide

  • Observe patients during treatment to compile and evaluate data on patients' responses and progress and report to physical therapist.
  • Administer traction to relieve neck or back pain, using intermittent or static traction equipment.
  • Transport patients to and from treatment areas, using wheelchairs or providing standing support.
  • Maintain equipment or furniture to keep it in good working condition, including performing the assembly or disassembly of equipment or accessories.
  • Participate in patient care tasks, such as assisting with passing food trays, feeding residents, or bathing residents on bed rest.
  • Clean and organize work area and disinfect equipment after treatment.

Physical Therapist Aide Required Skills

These are the skills Physical Therapist Aides say are the most useful in their careers:

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Social Perceptiveness: Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Monitoring: Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

Service Orientation: Actively looking for ways to help people.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Coordination: Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.

  • Physical Therapy Attendant
  • Therapy Aide
  • Physical Therapist Aide (PTA)
  • Physical Therapist Technician (Physical Therapy Tech)
  • Physical Therapy Aide (PTA)

Job Opportunities for Physical Therapist Aides

In the United States, there were 52,000 jobs for Physical Therapist Aide in 2016. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 29.2% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 15,200 new jobs for Physical Therapist Aide by 2026. There will be an estimated 8,500 positions for Physical Therapist Aide per year.


The states with the most job growth for Physical Therapist Aide are Arizona, Utah, and Colorado. Watch out if you plan on working in Rhode Island, Maine, or Vermont. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Average Physical Therapist Aides Salary

The salary for Physical Therapist Aides ranges between about $20,040 and $39,230 a year.


Physical Therapist Aides who work in Alaska, Minnesota, or Vermont, make the highest salaries.

How much do Physical Therapist Aides make in different U.S. states?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $26,190
Alaska $46,230
Arizona $28,360
Arkansas $25,650
California $31,090
Colorado $32,240
Connecticut $30,980
Delaware $26,050
District of Columbia $30,520
Florida $27,160
Georgia $27,270
Hawaii $30,050
Idaho $39,120
Illinois $31,100
Indiana $29,450
Iowa $27,580
Kansas $27,490
Kentucky $26,320
Louisiana $27,620
Maine $30,690
Maryland $25,980
Massachusetts $33,740
Michigan $27,810
Minnesota $37,230
Mississippi $22,870
Missouri $28,940
Montana $28,320
Nebraska $28,000
Nevada $26,000
New Hampshire $32,820
New Jersey $27,480
New Mexico $28,210
New York $30,230
North Carolina $27,780
North Dakota $33,350
Ohio $28,210
Oklahoma $21,610
Oregon $30,200
Pennsylvania $29,450
Rhode Island $33,960
South Carolina $30,440
South Dakota $28,810
Tennessee $25,740
Texas $26,810
Utah $22,860
Vermont $33,900
Virginia $28,110
Washington $29,870
West Virginia $25,620
Wisconsin $30,460
Wyoming $26,080

What Tools do Physical Therapist Aides Use?

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Physical Therapist Aides:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Word processing software
  • MEDITECH software
  • Scheduling software
  • Medical procedure coding software
  • Epic Systems
  • Patient record maintenance software

How do I Become a Physical Therapist Aide?

Education needed to be a Physical Therapist Aide:


What work experience do I need to become a Physical Therapist Aide?


Where Physical Therapist Aides Are Employed


Physical Therapist Aides work in the following industries:


Those thinking about becoming a Physical Therapist Aide might also be interested in the following careers:

Those who work as a Physical Therapist Aide sometimes switch careers to one of these choices:


Image Credit: Sgt. Courtney Richardson, 4th Fighter Wing Public Affairs via Public domain

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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