History of Physiotherapy and Types of Physiotherapy
Physiotherapy has evolved over the centuries from the earliest forms to the most complex of modern therapies. Today’s physiotherapy practices make use of the latest technological developments to provide the best possible care to patients. This blog will take a look at the history of physiotherapy and focus on the role that massage has played in the entire history of physiotherapy.
Massage isn’t just for relaxation, it’s been used for many centuries for healing people. One of the earliest forms of massage was hydrotherapy. The practice of physiotherapy has evolved over the centuries since the early days to modern therapies. Today physiotherapy is used as a tool to treat a multitude of conditions.
History of Physiotherapy
At least from the days of Hippocrates, massage was used and the history of physiotherapy began. The practice of physiotherapy has evolved over the centuries from the earliest forms to the most complex of modern therapies.
In 460 B.C. Hector used a form of physiotherapy called hydrotherapy, or water treatment. Specialists use this type of treatment today, although it is more specific to each type of condition patients have.
In 1894, there is the first evidence of a group of nurses in the history of physiotherapy with the Chartered Society. Within two decades, international physiotherapy programs were instituted. New Zealand began in 1913 and the United States in 1914.
The first American specialists in the history of physiotherapy came from Walter Reed College and Hospital in Portland Oregon. Instead of being called physiotherapists, they were called reconstruction aides. These assistants were nurses and had a background in physical education. They were instrumental in restoring the many veterans of World War I.
Research has been done throughout the modern history of physiotherapy. In fact, near the beginning, the study was conducted in the US. Published in 1921. Physiotherapy research is still going on today with a lot of special features. And in 1921, the Physical Therapy Association was founded by Mary McMillan. The group later became APTA, undoubtedly the most influential organization in the American history of physiotherapy.
The Georgia Warm Springs Foundation was established in 1924 to address the ever-growing polio epidemic. The foundation provided physiotherapy for these patients. Sister Kinney was known the world over for her work with polio victims. She was training at the Mayo Clinic. The polio epidemic was a turning point in the history of physiotherapy.
After the polio epidemic subsided, alternative therapies were massage, exercise, and sedation. About 1950, chiropractic manipulation emerged on the scene in the history of physiotherapy. This was very common in Great Britain. After that, the history of physiotherapy moved from hospitals to other relief centers. There were, and still are, physiotherapists working in clinics, private centers, nursing homes and schools. Special Orthopedics for physiotherapy was born during this time, too.
The International Federation of Orthopedic Manipulative Therapy arrived on the scene, and began making changes and contributing to the work ever since. Mariano Rocabado was an influential physiotherapist. Freddy Kaltenborn, of Norway, contributed to physical therapy on the east coast of the US. At the same time, Geoffrey Maitland of Australia changed the way training was conducted in the history of physiotherapy.
The focus during the 1980s physiotherapy history was on technology. New computer technologies, ultrasound, electric stimulation, and more were introduced. By the 1990’s, interest had shifted to manual therapy, with Freddy Kaltenborn leading the way. During the history of physiotherapy, training and practice have changed and improved. Many wise pioneers have left their mark on books and in the field service. Physiotherapy is a respected profession as a result.
Types of Physiotherapy :
Physiotherapy has emerged in the form of various sub-specialties, enabling PT to deal with a variety of conditions in a highly effective and efficient way. Below is a list of the various Types of Physiotherapy and their uses:
Neurological Physiotherapy :
Neurological conditions lead to severe muscle weakness, loss of balance and coordination, muscle spasm, tremors, loss of function, and reduced hearing. Neurological physiotherapy aims to establish movement and treat functional disorders from the nervous and neuromuscular system such as stroke, spinal cord injury, traumatic brain injury, multiple sclerosis, sciatica, aneurysm, and Parkinson’s disease.
Orthopedic / Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy :
This sub-specialty is aimed at correcting the disability and treating diseases related to the human musculoskeletal system, including repairing muscles, ligaments, bones, joints and muscles. The main purpose is to relieve pain, increase joint stiffness, and repair bone damage.
Cardiopulmonary Physiotherapy :
This sub-specialty treats patients suffering from cardiopulmonary disorders such as cardiac arrest and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Physiotherapists run rehabilitation centers and teach patients specific exercise and resistance training techniques that can help them improve their quality of life.
Pediatric Physiotherapy :
Pediatricians help develop serious injuries, birth defects, delayed body growth, or certain genetic defects such as cerebral palsy (a condition that limits complete movement and communication). Physiotherapists use a variety of clinical trials in children, which can help strengthen the affected areas; thus promoting the precise and complete movement of those parts.
Geriatric Physiotherapy :
This sub-specialty deals with certain age-related medical conditions such as arthritis (joint pain), osteoporosis (fractured and broken bones). Geriatric physiotherapists guide older people about limiting certain movements that may increase pain, giving their patients gait aides to improve overall mobility and reduce pain through a variety of techniques and exercises.
We hope you enjoyed this blog post about the history of physiotherapy and the types of physiotherapy. If you’re trying to find out more about physiotherapy, we share the basics of what physiotherapy is. We also talk about the types of physiotherapy and the history of each type. Our blog post gives a brief overview of these, so please comment below if like it or you want to know more! Thank you for reading, we hope this blog post helps you learn more about physiotherapy.