Apps make the world go ‘round, so they say. We’re at this point in time where there is an app for everything, including different types of therapy! For this article, we’re going to be talking a bit about physical therapy apps (which have become increasingly popular over the years), what users (whether they are physical therapists themselves or non-professionals) should look for, and a short list of nine physical therapy apps that you might want to use in 2023 and beyond!
Physical therapy apps come in various forms. Some come in the form of certain tools that a physical therapist might need to measure certain things while performing examinations. Some take the form of exercise trackers, some are educational, and some are for making rehabilitation plans for patients. There’s just so much out there that it might get overwhelming to determine what to use.
Don’t worry! Your pals here at Carepatron have narrowed down to nine physical therapy/physical therapy-related apps that you should use for your work and to introduce to patients.
What should you look for in a physical therapy app?
If you are a physical therapist or an adjacent healthcare professional looking for an app to introduce to your practice, you need to consider how exactly it will help our work and patients. Don’t download an app just because it has something to do with physical therapy. So, here are a few things you need to look out for to help you determine if the physical therapy or physical therapy-related application is worth investing in:
Can it help you assess your patient?
Earlier, we mentioned that physical therapy apps can come in various forms. Some of those apps are not necessarily what you would call “physical therapy” because they function as specific tools instead of being apps that provide exercise.
Some physical therapy assessments require tools to measure certain things, like flexion angles, dorsiflexion angles, how long it takes a person to do something, etc. If an app can help you measure these things, then those apps are worth downloading. We’ll talk about two specific apps that you should definitely get later on.
Is it customizable?
If you want to know if a physical therapy app is good, you should check if it allows you to customize things based on your patient’s needs. You won’t always be with your patient, and you will have to treat others simultaneously or in succession. One of the things that you can do to maintain treatment progress while you’re not present is to have your patient do certain things like exercises or rehabilitation activities.
If you introduce a physical therapy app to them, ensure it fits their particular needs based on their state. Are they currently recuperating from an injury? Do they have a neurological condition? Do they need to maintain a certain weight? What is their risk of falling? If an app allows you or them to personalize their exercises and intensity based on their needs, then that’s an app worth your time.
Is the app educational, and can it provide clear instructions?
If the app can provide exercises and activities to patients to help them with particular conditions, one of the things that you should check is if the app provides clear and concise instructions.
If the instructions aren’t clear or you know that they are wrong (since you are a physical therapist), you should refrain from suggesting this app to them. If you find the app to be clear when it comes to providing and explaining instructions, plus, it is educational, then by all means, use and recommend it!
Can it track the patient’s progress?
When treating a patient, one of the things you would naturally like to know is if they are getting better. One way to do this is to re-administer examinations to see if their symptoms during the initial tests are still present.
Another way to do so is to have them use an app for physical therapy that properly tracks their progress regarding certain activities that might be fit for their rehabilitation. If the app can properly record their activities and their progress, then you’ll have more information to help you determine if the patient is making strides in their recovery, or if you need to make adjustments to their treatment plan.
Does it allow clear and safe communication between you and the client?
Suppose you’re considering using an app that allows you to conduct telehealth consultations with your client. In that case, you need to make sure that it’s able to establish clear connection and communication between you and your patient, it can encrypt your messaging, and it can send the necessary notifications to them (e.g. push notifications, appointment reminders, reminders about performing certain activities part of their treatment). Not only that, but the app must be HIPAA-compliant, meaning it should safeguard their health information and keep them confidential.
Is it worth spending for?
If the physical therapy app happens to be priced, then make sure that the price is worth it based on its features, if the customer support is prompt and reliable, and if the platform is helpful enough and has everything ready for anyone who might have questions about it.
9 Best Apps Physical Therapy and Physical Therapy-related Purposes
Carepatron is a nifty healthcare practice management platform that operates with the mission of assisting healthcare professionals like physical therapists with their work by streamlining it! It does so by allowing professionals to organize and manage their appointments with clients, invoicing, clinical document storage, and a whole lot more in just a single platform.
Carepatron’s Best Features:
- Resource Library: Carepatron has a collection of resources (from worksheets to assessments) that should help physical therapists gauge their patients better
- Highly Secure Storage: It has a storage system that allows users to store clinical documentation and other files in a HIPAA-compliant manner. It also allows users to secure them with access permissions.
- Easy Appointment Scheduling: Healthcare professionals who use the platform can easily manage their appointments, especially because of its calendar interface
- Efficient Recording: Carepatron can help healthcare professionals keep track of their patient’s personal and health information, their treatment plans, and progress notes
- Simplified Invoicing and Billing: Professionals don’t need to worry about how to bill their patients because Carepatron will help them fix their invoices and even make billing and payments seamless.
- The platform's customizability features are not that comprehensive.
- The web version is still superior to the mobile version. The mobile version currently lacks several features that you can get from the web version.
- The free plan allows you to access Carepatron’s basic features for free!
- The Pro Plan costs $12 per user and per month
- The Organisation Plan costs $19 per organisation and per month
- Carepatron currently sits on a 4.5 / 5 rating on Capterra based on 69 reviews
2. PT Timer
Photo taken from the PT Timer’s App Store page
PT Timer is a nifty physical therapy app that allows users to track their physical therapy exercises customize the intervals in which they do these exercises, their rest times, and even add their own exercises. You can have your patients use this and create an exercise plan to follow.
PT Timer’s Best Features
- Total freedom for the user to customize their exercises and their prompts, complete with audio cues
- If you prescribe a certain routine and it happens to be “complex,” the app can help simplify it for your patients
- It can generate a report of their exercises which can be sent to you
PT Timer’s Limitations
- PT Timer is currently only available for iOS. The developers are currently working on an Android version, but there’s no timeframe for that as of this writing
- It cannot create personalized physical therapy plans, so before having your patient use this, you must create one for them
- The physical therapy exercise library might not be comprehensive. It’s best to check if this physical therapy app has the exercises you want your patient to do
PT Timer’s Pricing
- It has a free trial, but you will eventually be asked to subscribe. For users from the United States, it costs $1 a month. The pricing varies depending on your country
PT Timer’s Reviews
- PT Timer currently sits on a 4.3 / 5 rating on the App Store based on 86 ratings!
3. PT Decide by Orca Health
PT Decide is a paid physical therapy app developed by Orca Health. It provides patients with a wide range of health information and resources (including anatomy and physiology animations, and videos) for educational purposes, treatment information, and physical therapy exercises!
PT Decide’s Best Features
- It has high-quality videos, animations, and visual aids that make learning about the anatomy and physiology fun and concise
- It has a comprehensive library of physical therapy exercises that you can do, and it has instructional videos to show you how to do them properly
- Users can create personalized exercise plans based on their needs and their goals. If you, the physical therapist, will recommend the app to them, you can create a personalized plan for them and have the user input the plan into the app
PT Decide’s Limitations
- You have to pay for the app after three day-free trial in order to use it
- It doesn’t offer any one-on-one physical therapy sessions. It is limited to providing educational resources and exercises
- It is not available in all countries
PT Decide’s Price after the Free Trial
- All content: $24.99 per month or $249.99 per year
- Anatomical category: $4.99 per month or $45.99 per year
- Musculoskeletal category: $19.99 per month or $199.99 per year
PT Decide’s Reviews
- It currently sits on a 4-star rating on the App Store based on 29 reviews
4. Omada Joint and Muscle Health
Screenshot taken from Google Playstore
The Omada Joint and Muscle Health physical therapy app was formerly the Physera app. Through this app, you’ll access a wide variety of features, such as customized exercises based on your needs and the opportunity to connect with licensed physical therapists who can advise you about musculoskeletal problems.
Omada Joint and Muscle Health’s Best Features
- You can get personalized health and exercise plans as well as ongoing guidance from a licensed physical therapist
- There are guided exercise animations to help you with the proper forms
- You can connect with a physical therapist via chat
- You can track completed workouts
Omada Joint and Muscle Health’s Limitations
- It requires you to have an Omada membership, which has a different registration portal
- If you used Physera before, you’re required to register for this to use the features you used to enjoy
- Physical therapists you interact with can’t provide the full support you need since you are communicating with them through a phone, so some problems cannot be addressed
Omada Joint and Muscle Health’s Prices
- The Omada Joint and Muscle Health app is free, however, some features may be locked behind a paywall. You have to register for an Omada membership to see what the prices are
Omada Joint and Muscle Health’s Reviews
- The Omada joint and Muscle Health physical therapy app currently sits on a 4.8 / 5 rating on the App Store based on 1.7 thousand ratings
Screenshots taken from Google Playstore
Physioadvisor is one of Australia’s top-selling physical therapy apps. Like with some of the entries on this list, this physical therapy app provides users with physical therapy exercises. It has over five hundred exercises that your patients can do and visual guides that properly detail how each exercise is done. Not only that, but the exercises in this app were selected based on how popular they are among physical therapists and how often they are done in clinical settings.
Physioadvisor’s Best Features:
- Has a comprehensive number of exercises that patients can do outside the clinical setting
- Has enough visuals to properly demonstrate the exercises so patients can do them correctly
- Physical therapists can send custom rehabilitation plans to their patients using the app
- Has a good reminder feature to help patients follow a routine they need to follow for their rehabilitation
- Dated-looking UI and might not be intuitive for some
- Not customizable compared to other apps on this list. So you can’t make prompts like how PT Timer does it
- While it has a lot of exercises, they are limited to exercises and injury prevention
- It is currently priced at $3.67 on Google Playstore
- It currently sits at a 3.6 / 5 rating on Google Playstore
6. Physical Therapy by OneStep
Screenshot taken from the App Store
OneStep is a physical therapy app designed to help physical therapists and users connect anytime, anywhere. If you have patients that can’t make the time to travel to meet up with you, you can have them use this app to connect with them easily, and you can use it to provide personalized plans for your patient!
Physical Therapy by OneStep’s Best Features:
- It can create a connection between patients and licensed physical therapists with ease
- It can connect with Apple HealthKit to analyze the mobility data of users and to help customize plans for them
- It can help personalize rehabilitation plans and recovery plans based on the patient’s health information and capabilities
Physical Therapy by OneStep’s Limitations:
- Only available for iOS
- It is not free, and you will need to subscribe after the fourteen-day free trial
- UI is not intuitive and may take a while to get used to, but the learning curve should be worth it, according to reviews
Physical Therapy by OneStep’s Pricing:
- After the fourteen-day free trial, you must pay $35 monthly. There are no hidden costs. You can cancel anytime
Physical Therapy by OneStep’s Reviews:
- It currently has a 4.6 / 5 rating on the App Store based on 69 ratings
7. CORE - Clinical Orthopedic Exam
Screenshot taken from the App Store
CORE - Clinical Orthopedic Exam is an app that’s more for physical therapists, not their patients. What this app does is that it serves as a database for physical therapists to refer to when they need to decide on what tests to conduct on their patients in clinical settings.
CORE’s Best Features
- It has a database of over 400 clinical examinations that physical therapists can conduct
- It has video demonstrations to go along with written instructions so physical therapists can see how certain tests are conducted
- It has diagnostic properties and supporting medical references to back up the inclusions in the database, so physical therapists know they can trust the efficacy of the tests they need
- It won’t open sometimes, possibly due to server problems
- Sometimes, you need to uninstall and reinstall the app to get it to work
- It’s paywalled
- It currently costs $39.99 on the App Store
- It currently sits on a 2.2 / 5 rating on the App Store. The negative reviews are due to the start-up issues and the server problems. A troubleshooting tip (uninstall then reinstall) was given by the developers, though
8. Stopwatch & Timer
Screenshot taken from Google Playstore
You might find it strange that a stopwatch application is here, but stopwatches are important tools in physical therapy. Numerous tests make use of time, whether as set duration or as a way to rate patients. The 30-second Sit-to-Stand Test, which is an assessment for elderly patients, is a test that is strictly 30 seconds long. The Illinois Agility Test rates test takers based on how fast they can accomplish it. If you don’t have an actual stopwatch, you can use this!
Stopwatch & Timer’s Best Features:
- You can have several timers at the ready and label them so you know what they’re for when you look back (e.g. Lap 1, Lap 2, Lap 3 for certain tests so you can calculate their average time later on)
- You can color-code them based on your preferences. If adding colors helps you organize things, you can do so with this
- You can run up to five timers at once
Stopwatch & Timer’s Limitation:
- You’re subject to ads if you don’t buy the subscription
- It’s not free. You have a 7-day free trial, though
- Timers can freeze sometimes
- Buying an actual stopwatch might be the better choice, unless you like the fact that you can have five timers at once and organize them with labels
Stopwatch & Timer’s Pricing:
- The paid version price varies depending on the location. You will see it upon downloading and opening the app
Stopwatch & Timer’s Reviews:
- It currently sits on a 4.3 / 5 rating based on 25.7 thousand reviews on Google Playstore
Screenshot taken from the App Store
The goniometer is another essential tool for physical therapists because it allows them to measure the range of motion of limbs. If you don’t have a physical goniometer, this is the second best thing to have because you can use it for certain physical examination techniques that require you to flex or dorsiflex certain limbs and joints.
Goniometer’s Best Features:
- It’s a good substitute for a physical goniometer
- It can measure the range of motion of limbs accurately
- It can help you determine the extent of a patient’s joint injury as well as provide you with the expected length of time it will take for the patient to recover fully
- It is only available for iOS devices
- It may take a while to work on new iOS system versions; developers don’t seem to update it immediately when a new iOS version comes out
- It is limited to measuring range of motion and joint angles
- It costs $4.99 on the App Store
- It currently has a score of 3.2 / 5 on the App Store
Start using Carepatron to help boost your productivity when it comes to Physical Therapy!
If you are a physical therapist, we recommend you take advantage of Carepatron! Through our client management system, you will be able to streamline all your clerical work, from scheduling your appointments with patients to issuing invoices! This will allow you to focus more on the meat of your work, which is providing the best care for your patients as possible!
Not only can we streamline your work, but we can also help you cover more ground when it comes to gauging your patient and their potential problems! How is it possible for us to do that? Well, that’s because of our resource repository. We have various physical therapy and orthopedic assessments that you might want to use to assess your patients. Feel free to browse around and download as much as you want! We’re sure that they will help you get a better picture of your patient and their problems.
We can also help you secure your clinical documents and your patient’s health information through our storage system, which stores them in a HIPAA-compliant manner! So, not only can we help you streamline your workflow and boost the quality of your work, but we can also help you preserve them.
Subscribe to Carepatron, make it your physical therapy app, and let us help you unlock the full potential of your physical therapy practice!