First Physical Therapy, LLC - Logo
Located in Westerly, RI and Mystic, CT        401-348-8112 (Westerly)
860-245-0851 (Mystic)




Orthopaedic Manual Physical Therapy (OMPT) is any “hands-on” treatment provided by the physical therapist. Treatment may include moving joints in specific directions and at different speeds to regain movement (joint mobilization and manipulation), muscle stretching, passive movements of the affected body part, or having the patient move the body part against the therapist’s resistance to improve muscle activation and timing. Specific soft tissue techniques may also be used to improve the mobility and function of tissue and muscles.


Aquatic therapy is physical therapy provided in a warm water pool. At First Physical Therapy, the pool is handicapped accessible with a ramped entry and a pool chair lift. We keep the water at 94 degrees to provide an environment for the rehabilitation of arthritis and other painful musculoskeletal conditions. The pool depth is three to four feet so that those who cannot swim or who are afraid of the water can participate in their therapy in a comfortable and safe setting. We also offer convenient locker rooms with dressing, bathroom and shower facilities. 

To begin aquatic physical therapy, a physical therapist performs a thorough evaluation on land. After the therapist develops an individualized program with specific patient goals, the patient works with the therapist or therapy assistant who instructs the patient in a comprehensive aquatic exercise program.


Vestibular and Balance Program provides a comprehensive and targeted evaluation and assessment of multiple vestibular and balance problems. This information is used to develop a specific plan of care to aid in the recovery from often debilitating symptoms. The goal is to identify the particular cause of symptoms and implement treatments aimed at relieving the possible dizziness, spinning, issues with falling or unsteadiness you may be experiencing.

The following conditions have been found to benefit from vestibular therapy:

Disequilibrium—Unsteadiness, imbalance or loss of equilibrium; often accompanied by spatial disorientation.
Neuronitis/Labrynthitis—A problem of the inner ear that results in vertigo and also possible hearing loss or ringing in the ears.
Bell’s palsy—A paralysis or weakness of the muscles on one side of your face.
Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo—One of the most common causes of vertigo, the sudden sensation that you’re spinning or that the inside of your head is spinning.
Traumatic brain injury
Oscillopsia—A visual disturbance in which objects in the visual field appear to oscillate resulting in an incapacitating condition experienced by many patients with neurological disorders.
Peripheral neuropathy—Weakness, numbness and pain from nerve damage, usually in the hands and feet.
Diabetic Neuropathy—A family of nerve disorders caused by diabetes.
Multiple sclerosis
Lower extremity amputee
Musculoskeletal dysfunction—Injuries or pain in the body’s joints, ligaments, muscles, nerves, tendons and structures that support limbs, neck and back.
Cerebellar disease—A disorder of the cerebellum, which is part of the brain and largely involved in “coordination.” Persons whose cerebellum don’t work well are generally clumsy and unsteady.
Guillain-Barre syndrome—A rare disorder in which your body’s immune system attacks your nerves. Weakness and tingling in your extremities are usually the first symptoms.

The benefits from the Vestibular and Balance Program include:

Fall prevention
Improved balance/equilibrium reactions
Improved trunk/leg strength and flexibility
Enhanced position sense and motor control
Improved dynamic postural stability
Improved functional ambulation
Enhanced social and emotional well-being

Orthopedic - Our physical therapists are orthopedic specialists and experts in evaluating, treating and managing patients with orthopedic conditions. Some of these conditions include sprains, strains, tendonitis, arthritis, ligament tears, muscle tears, joint/muscle/tendon inflammations, post fracture injury, joint stiffness, joint pain, rotator cuff repair, ACL (Anterior Cruciate Ligament) reconstruction, and post arthroscopic and total joint replacement surgeries. Orthopedic physical therapy focuses on the treatment or rehabilitation of injuries to the orthopedic system, which includes muscles, bones, joints, tendons, and ligaments. Physical Therapy is often helpful in the treatment of orthopedic conditions that can cause pain, decreased strength, decreased range of motion, or swelling.

Therapeutic exercises -Therapeutic exercises refers to a wide range of physical activities that focuses on restoring and maintaining strength, endurance, flexiblity, stability and balance. The goal of therapeutic exercises is to return an injured patient to a fully functioning, pain-free state.

A physical therapist begins by conducting a thorough evaluation of an individual's physical capabilities through both a medical history and physical assessment. The physical therapist then uses his/her knowledge to shape a treatment care plan containing a slowly-progressing exercise program that is appropriate to each individual's needs. The physical therapist monitors progress, assists with some physical movements and continuously modifies the plan as the client recovers.

The first objective of therapeutic exercise is to help the body reduce pain and inflammation. Once this is achieved, the exercise program focuses on regaining range of motion and rebuilding muscle strength and endurance. Exercises that may be included in a therapeutic program include:

Strengthening exercises, usually performed with heavy resistance and fewer repetitions.

Endurance exercises that engage large muscle groups over a longer period of time.

Flexibility exercises achieved through stretching and movement.

Balance and coordination exercises that focus on maintaining an individual's center of gravity.

Functional training

The Functional Movement Screen (FMS) is a ranking and grading system for movement patterns important for normal everyday function. The testing has been researched thoroughly and has been proven to be both reliable and valid. The FMS, comprised of 7 functional movement tests, readily identifies deficiencies and asymmetries within movement patterns. These are issues that can reduce the effects of functional training and lead to injury or dysfunction. The testing is administered the subject is given a score and “problem” areas are highlighted. Corrective exercises are then prescribed to improve upon deficiencies noted within specific functional movement tests. 
We are pleased to offer the FMS at our facility as we believe it is a great way to minimize the risk for injury and also to enhance athletic performance. This is also a great tool to identify potential problem areas before beginning a workout program. 

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