Functional Exercise Therapy
vs. Physical Therapy

We’re often asked about the difference between what we provide, Functional Exercise Therapy, and Physical Therapy. Functional Exercise Therapy is a rather new field and many are still learning about it, so it’s natural to try to find something to compare it to. Physical Therapy, on the other hand, is a well-known institution within the rehabilitation community. It’s important to know the difference, however, because it can make a big difference in the life of someone who needs more treatment after Physical Therapy ends.

  • Functional Exercise Therapy helps to bridge the gap between Physical Therapy and a Home Exercise Program (HEP).
  • Physical Therapy focuses on the specific injured area(s) of the patient’s body, whereas Functional Exercise Therapy focuses on total body health and wellness by conditioning the patient’s entire body.
  • Functional Exercise Therapy focuses on long-term recovery and prepares an individual to function independently by staying physically active across a lifespan, which begins right after a patient is discharged from physical therapy.

More Resources

Read more articles from Functional Therapy Unlimited on the topic of Functional Exercise Therapy vs. Physical Therapy.

Fitness Therapy Seen as Extension to Physical Therapy, 2012
The Missing Link in Our Rehabilitation Chain of Care, 2013
Functional Exercise Therapist vs. Physical Therapist, 2014

I want to express how pleased we are with the improvement in [our client]'s mobility as a result of the work with your therapist. Her mobility now is better than I have ever observed since working with her as a client.


Case Manager