COVID-19 is causing significant disruptions to all areas of life and presents a serious threat to health. The American Physical Therapy Association supports following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines for remaining safe and avoiding unnecessary exposure, which includes staying home and distancing yourself from others when possible.
But practicing social distancing doesn't mean that you have to stop being physically active or that you can't get physical therapy care if you need it. Getting the recommended amount of daily physical activity for your age and ability helps to maintain and improve overall health, and it is perhaps even more important during stressful times like these. And if you need physical therapy care, there are options available to you.
First, follow CDC guidelines for personal health habits to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and other viruses. Then, take advantage of the following tips and resources that you can use to maintain your health and fitness, and get answers to frequently asked questions about care while doing your part to stop the spread of the virus.
If you have or have had COVID-19 or are experiencing the symptoms of long COVID and find it difficult to return to your previous level of activity, a physical therapist can help. Physical therapists design personalized treatment plans to help people recover by treating the short- and long-term effects of COVID-19.
Physical therapists are movement experts. They improve quality of life through hands-on care, patient education, and prescribed movement. You can contact a physical therapist directly for an evaluation. To find a physical therapist in your area, visit Find a PT.
The American Physical Therapy Association launched a national campaign to promote physical activity and improve health and quality of life. Watch the public service announcement.
Physical Therapy and COVID-19:
What You Need to Know
- Physical Therapy Health Center on COVID-19 and Long COVID
- Physical Therapy for PASC or "Long COVID"
- Options for Care: Answers to Frequently Asked Questions
- Podcast: Physical Therapy's Role in the Fight Against COVID-19
- Surviving COVID-19 and ARDS: What You Should Know
- What Is Post-Intensive Care Syndrome? A Physical Therapist's Perspective | (Spanish.pdf)
- Physical Therapy Guide to Post-Intensive Care Syndrome
- Physical Therapist Living With Long COVID Shares His Story and Clinical Expertise
Health and Wellness Tips
- Three Steps For Returning to Physical Activity After COVID-19
- Three Strategies to Maintain Health and Fitness During Social Distancing and COVID-19
- 10 Habits for Better Sleep
- Avoid Chronic Disease With Regular Activity
- Video: Home Exercises to Manage Upper Back and Neck Strain — For Anyone Wearing PPE
- Video: Home Office Ergonomics for Sitting or Standing Desks
- Tips for Healthy Cycling
- Workplace Wellness and Office Ergonomics
- 6 Reasons to Consider Telehealth Physical Therapy
For Older Adults and Caregivers
- Maintaining Health and Fitness: Tips and Exercises for Older Adults
- Video: Respiratory Exercises for Older Adults
- Video: Safe Standing Exercises for Older Adults
- 4 Tips to Stay Active and Independent As You Age
- 5 Tips to Safely Benefit From Walking for People With Arthritis
- 5 Tips to Fall Proof Your Home
- 6 Exercises to Promote Balance That You Can Do at Home
- 7 Exercises for Healthy Aging
- 9 Things Your Physical Therapist Wants You to Know About Aging Well
- Exercise for Arthritis: What You Should Know
Activities for Kids of All Abilities
- Activities to Promote Development in Children
- Video: Exercise Program for Kids Aged Six to 10
- Family Flash Cards: Fun and engaging flashcards featuring individual activities and at home equipment modifications for families to use at home.
- Young Athletes at Home: Guide for families and caregivers on how to run activities at home.
- Young Athletes Videos: Videos demonstrating activities.
- Special Olympics Healthy Play at Home: Poster for families to track the healthy behaviors they do at home.
Motivation: Move More, Feel Better
- Public Service Announcement: Physical Activity Improves Health and Quality of Life
- Video: Home Exercises from a Physical Therapist — Floor/Mat
- Video: Lower Body Strengthening Exercises Using a Chair
- Video: Upper Body Strengthening Exercises Using Household Items
- Strategies to Safely Improve Your Fitness
- The Benefits of Exercise on Brain Health
- Avoiding Muscle Atrophy When Injured
- Avoiding Sedentary Behaviors in Children