Pediatric Physical Therapy

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Lurie Children’s has one of the largest, well-trained and experienced physical therapy teams in a freestanding children’s hospital in the Midwest. Our physical therapists evaluate and treat premature babies, full-term infants, young children, pre-teens and teens having health issues associated with motor development and movement dysfunction due to disease or injury. Motor and movement dysfunctions are frequently identified at birth or in early childhood, but can appear at any point in the continuum to young adulthood.

The goals of our physical therapy treatments are to maximize your child’s:

  • Developmentally-appropriate body movements and functions
  • Potential for pain-free living
  • Ability to participate in daily activities like school, sports and other recreational activities

Our Approach to Pediatric Physical Therapy

Our physical therapists believe in idea sharing between therapists, among members of our multi-specialty teams and with parents and families. As a parent, you can count on this collaborative approach no matter who you see for physical therapy. We deliver the best outcomes for your child because we invest in a highly educated and trained workforce, collaboration and teamwork.

Our physical therapists start with a thorough baseline evaluation of your child, which usually takes about one hour. They will examine and observe your child while exploring your child’s medical history, discussing their health issues and talking with you about the goals of physical therapy. At the close of the evaluation, our therapists will present their findings and results, and give you a plan for physical therapy tailored to your child’s needs. The plan will include a proposed schedule and frequency for physical therapy treatments.

Your child’s physical therapy, depending on your child’s treatment plan, can include many different therapeutic modalities, including some of the following:

  • Tailored exercises
  • Elongating tight muscles and strengthening weak muscles during active exercise
  • Specialized equipment to help your child meet their therapy goals
  • Training children in the use of assistive and adaptive devices such as braces, various crutches and walkers
  • Application of advanced knowledge regarding motor development
  • Sport specific rehabilitation to ensure timely return to sport
  • Individualized home program with instructions in exercises and positioning to meet your child’s needs

For teenagers who need ongoing physical therapy treatments into young adulthood, we make sure the transitions to adult care are seamless and well-coordinated. We work closely with the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab​ (formerly the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago) and other premier institutions in the Chicago metropolitan area and region to ensure the continuity of care for every child. 

Our Physical Therapy Programs

Lurie Children’s offers many different multidisciplinary programs for children. Our physical therapists currently work as part of the teams evaluating and treating children in various programs.

Conditions Treated with Physical Therapy

Our physical therapists evaluate and treat children with a broad range of pediatric conditions and injuries.

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Specialized Physical Therapy Services & Treatments

We offer many specialized physical therapy services for children with conditions that affect their movement.

View our services

Our Specialists

The physical therapists at Lurie Children’s have many years of experience evaluating and treating patients from infancy through adolescence.

Meet Our Team

Make An Appointment

We offer easy online scheduling for your child's physical therapy needs. 


Your support is vital in helping us continue to make a difference in the lives of patients and families. Lurie Children's relies on philanthropic funding to enhance its programs, services and research for children. To learn more, please e-mail the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago Foundation at or call 312.227.7500