Physical Therapy

Our expert physical therapists are passionate about helping patients meet their rehabilitation goals.
Our expert physical therapists are passionate about helping patients meet their rehabilitation goals.

Our physical therapists put you at the center of your care. We will help you maintain or restore function and quality of life. You’ll find:

  • A team approach, with physical therapists working closely with your doctors and with occupational and speech-language therapists.
  • Leading-edge technology to improve your walking, balance and strength.
  • Extensive experience in neurologic rehabilitation, sports injuries, total joint replacement and cancer recovery.
  • Innovative and effective ways to manage pain.
  • One of the few physical therapists in Oregon certified in the Schroth Method for scoliosis.

Learn about our pediatric services.

What is physical therapy?

Physical therapists help you move better after illness, injury or disability. They use exercise, skilled massage and other therapies to help you regain function.

Physical therapy can help you:

  • Manage pain, reducing the need for medication.
  • Avoid, prepare for and recover from surgery.
  • Improve range of motion, strength, flexibility and endurance.
  • Improve balance and reduce the risk of falls.
  • Recover from injury, stroke and paralysis.
  • Return to optimal sports form.
  • Manage age-related health issues.
  • Control your bowel or bladder.
  • Manage symptoms in diseases that worsen over time.
Physical therapists work with patients in well-equipped facilities.
Physical therapist Sarah Zerzan has particular expertise in cancer rehabilitation and orthopaedics.

Our excellence

Our therapists are highly trained. In addition to graduate degrees in physical therapy, many are board certified. This means they have at least 2,000 hours of experience in their specialty and have passed a rigorous exam. Others have advanced training and experience in fields that don’t yet have certification programs.You’ll find:

  • Board-certified orthopaedic specialists
  • Neurologic specialists
  • Specialists in women’s health and pelvic rehabilitation
  • Specialists in strength, conditioning and sports
  • A facial rehabilitation specialist
  • A physical therapist certified in the Schroth Method for scoliosis patients
  • Pain management specialists

Leading-edge technology

Training equipment to improve your function includes:

  • AlterG treadmill: This treadmill supports your body weight while you train. This can give you a safe, pain-free workout.
  • Bariatric swimming pool lift: We have Portland’s only chair lift to help obese patients in and out of the pool for aquatic therapy.
  • Biodex: Our computerized strength training and testing machine assesses specific muscle groups, helping your therapists focus treatments and track your recovery.
  • Functional electric stimulation bike: Electrical pulses allow people with leg paralysis to pedal.
  • Lokomat: A robotic treadmill training system helps patients relearn to walk.
  • NeuroCom balance equipment: Our computerized assessment and training system helps patients regain balance.
  • ReWalk: A wearable robotic exoskeleton allows patients with spinal cord injuries to stand, turn, walk and climb stairs.

Learn more about our services and technology

Physical therapists work with patients in well-equipped facilities.
Your physical therapist will develop an exercise program for your unique needs and wishes.

Physical therapy treatments

Our therapists use an exercise-oriented approach with a focus on patient empowerment. Our treatments include:

Therapeutic exercise: We will develop a program to help you restore or maintain strength, endurance, flexibility, stability and balance. The goals are to minimize pain, prevent injury and help you function at your best.

Education: We will carefully instruct you in how to do exercises so you have a greater understanding of your condition and can play an active role in treatment.

Balance assessment and training: Our therapists prevent falls using exercises and NeuroCom balance equipment to assess and improve your balance.

Schroth Method: Our Schroth-certified physical therapist teaches scoliosis patients exercises and breathing techniques. This therapy, customized for each patient, can keep the spine’s curve from getting worse. It can also improve strength and posture, and lessen pain.

Manual therapy: This therapy uses skilled manipulation, massage and movement of joints and soft tissue to reduce pain, increase range of motion or reduce swelling.

Pool therapy: A warm pool helps you exercise without pain.

Astym and Graston therapies: Therapists use massage tools to promote healing in tendons and soft tissues. These therapies also break down scar tissue that may restrict movement.

Bloodflow restriction training: Using a tourniquet or cuff on your upper arm or leg while you exercise to restrict blood flow can help you make greater gains in muscle strength with lighter loads.

High-intensity task training: This therapy helps stroke patients restore function. It requires intensive training, problem solving and complex movements using your arms and legs. 

Conditions physical therapy helps

Other OHSU services

Learn more

  • ChoosePT, resources for patients from the American Physical Therapy Association
  • Symptoms & Conditions, guides on how physical therapy can help specific conditions, American Physical Therapy Association

For patients

Call 503-494-3151 to:

  • Make an appointment
  • Seek a second opinion
  • Ask questions


See OHSU Health rehabilitation locations across the Portland area.

Refer a patient