Did you know there are over 250,000 licensed physical therapists nationwide? This medical career is in high demand for good reason: there are a lot of key benefits that make the job well worth the effort!
Of course, if you’re on the fence about applying to PT school, you’re not alone. Making the decision to spend years chasing a new profession can seem overwhelming at best. However, if you’re not sure whether a physical therapy career is right for you, there are five benefits you may want to consider as you make your choice.
1. Great Salaries
The annual physical therapist salary can vary, but the median in 2019 was $89,440.
Variations in salary can stem from a range of factors, from location to experience. However, in general you can expect to receive a high salary for your hours on the job. With more time on the job and more experience finding the right clients, you can see your salary climb over time!
2. Outstanding Job Outlook
The demand for physical therapists continues to rise as Baby Boomers age. With this aging population comes the need for personalized healthcare industry services like physical therapy—especially in more rural areas with less access to varied medical services.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the 2019-2029 job outlook for a physical therapist is at 18%, faster than most jobs.
3. High Career Satisfaction
For most of us, the knowledge that we’ve performed a helpful service is enough to bring us satisfaction. For physical therapists, a job well done means that your client can move around with less pain and stress—which can be a major mood booster! If you enjoy playing an essential role in people’s healthcare and in getting patients back on their feet, this role will be perfect.
4. Great Work Flexibility
Being a physical therapist allows you to stray from the standard and rigid working schedule. Each day brings different clients and new problems to solve, and your challenges may require you to dip into everything from ergonomics to athletic training to biomechanics.
Beyond this, you’ll also have more scheduling flexibility than you would in most professions. While the 9-to-5 physical therapy office isn’t unheard of, many professionals shift their hours to work earlier in the mornings or later in the afternoons as needed. This allows you to make the most of your day and create a better work-life balance.
5. Active Work
As you might expect, physical therapists have no problem staying active! Though there’s some time spent typing notes on computers on and off, most physical therapists stay on their feet for much of the day. This allows you to keep an active lifestyle, teach your patients on the go, and—best of all—leave your work behind when you walk out the door.
How Can You Start a Physical Therapist Career?
To become a physical therapist, you’ll need to earn a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree. These are often full-time, three-year programs that have plenty of hands-on experience to get you started. Of course, once you’re established as a physical therapist, you will still need to undergo CEUs for PTs, which allow you to keep learning about the latest techniques and advancements in the field.
The steps toward this career may seem demanding, but the reward of becoming a physical therapist is well worth the effort!
Get Started in Physical Therapy Today
Ultimately, the decision to become a physical therapist is a personal one. However, when you consider the list of benefits above, it’s clear that a physical therapist career would be rewarding and fun for the right individual. If this sounds like you, consider setting on the path to a DPT today!
Want more tips to help you make informed choices? Check out our other helpful guides for more insights.