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Is your title limiting you?

business coach rehab professional Apr 03, 2023

*The following is not legal advice, it’s simply what I have done and what I have felt comfortable doing to take control of my career. 

Almost weekly, I get asked questions by Physical Therapists and other clinical providers about the difference between “wellness and coaching” and “physical therapy” services. The main reason we navigate this issue is that there are FAR more legalities regarding how Physical Therapy is delivered and managed, which can be a limiting factor to growing your business and creating freedom for your career. Here’s how I navigated the line between the two. 

Is “pain” off-limits in the coaching sphere? - I don’t think so, and here’s why:

Is pain a prerequisite for “needing” physical therapy? Meaning do people need to seek out care just because they are in pain? In short, the answer is no. Plenty of clients opt not to seek care and thus hit the gym to work with a trainer as they navigate the pain experience throughout life. What this means is that it is the consumer's choice to direct their resource, not the nomenclature of the PT/Fitness world. 

“But Ray, if a client is in pain, they need treatment.” - Do they? What if all they really need is a program that solely manipulates exercise variables in a tactical way, and the byproduct of what they experience is simply they no longer have pain…. Makes you think. 

For me as a Physical Therapist providing coaching online all over the world through what I call a Prescriptive Exercise Program, I always avoided terms that had the potential to cause confusion. For example, in the PT realm, the exercise used to manage patients is called “Therapeutic Exercise” - I made sure that language was never used in my marketing or client conversations. Instead of using the verbiage of “treatment,” it was always “management” - this creates a differentiator between the 2 experiences. 

Let’s look at orthopedic findings as well… If a client has a tendon issue, does that mean they cannot train or perform exercises? Or do they simply need to be managed more appropriately? Can I program tempo work for general strength and see if the tendon issue resolves as a byproduct? Absolutely. 

Remember, these rules are made up, like many things we encounter in life. You’ll never have a black/white answer, and while that can be confusing, it can also be liberating.

So if you’re ready to expand your horizons and start coaching, I want to invite you to join our FaceBook group, where we are continuing this conversation each and every day!

I want to personally invite you to join the discussion and start getting your business off the ground with our community to support you! Use the link below to join a group of coaches and rehab professionals looking to take action and create the life they always dreamed of!

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