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APTA sections are your link to the resources you need to stay current in expertise areas and the best way to connect with others who share your interests — including some of the profession's most influential thought leaders.

APTA sections, some also referred to as academies, focus on a wide range of areas, from specific types of physical therapy to broader policy areas and patient populations. No matter what your interest is there's probably a section for you.

Each month we will highlight one of the 18 APTA sections, giving information on the specialty, involvement opportunities, and sharing an experience from a current member.

About the Section

The APTA Academy of Pediatric Physical Therapy is a specialty component organization of the American Physical Therapy Association. The Pediatrics has nearly 6,000 physical therapist, physical therapist assistant, student, and partner members, who serve families and children from pre-term infants to teenagers and even those with developmental disabilities who are entering adulthood. The academy's mission is to advance pediatric physical therapy through excellence in advocacy, education, and research.

Section Involvement

APTA Pediatrics hosts an annual conference and provides members with the peer-reviewed journal Pediatric Physical Therapy and a section newsletter. Additionally, the academy offers members mentorship, networking programs, and a career center.

Academy members have access to participation in all 10 pediatric special interest groups,  including:

  • Adolescents & Adults With Developmental Disabilities
  • Academic & Clinical Education
  • Early Intervention
  • Hospital-Based Physical Therapy
  • Neonatology
  • Pediatric Cardiovascular & Pulmonary
  • Pediatric Sports-Fitness
  • Residencies & Fellowships
  • School-Based Physical Therapy
  • Students and New Professionals

Section Benefits

APTA Pediatrics supports students and early-career PTs and PTAs by facilitating the transition from student to early career to experienced pediatric clinician. The academy works to create innovative events to get students and new professionals engaged and connected. In addition, academy members who are students or within their first five years of practice are automatically members of the Students and New Professionals Special Interest Group. The SIG encourages students and recent graduates to begin advocating for the pediatric physical therapy profession early in their careers by engaging members through outreach and community. The SNP SIG provides a forum for networking, collaborating, and sharing resources on relevant topics.

APTA Pediatrics fosters growth in membership, with the aim of developing emerging leaders through opportunity and professional development.  

Exclusive benefits to APTA Pediatrics Student and New Professionals SIG members include:

  • Participation in the SIG Mentorship Program.
  • Opportunities to receive scholarships for the APTA Combined Sections Meeting and APTA Pediatrics Annual Conference.
  • Participation in webinars, panels, and a SIG Journal Club.

Section Member Experiences

"When I meet other physical therapist and physical therapist assistant students interested in pediatrics, I always recommend that they consider adding the APTA Pediatrics to their APTA membership. APTA Pediatrics does a phenomenal job of providing opportunities for students to learn, network, and build leadership and communication skills. The elements of my membership that I most value are the timely and insightful updates in the APTA Pediatrics Milestones email, access to informational content such as the Pediatric Physical Therapy journal and fact sheets, and opportunities to engage with pediatric physical therapists through volunteer positions and SIG involvement." - Sarah Strong, SPT

"As a student member of APTA Pediatrics, I have been able to join different SIGs and groups to gain relationships with other members, work on projects that will benefit others in their practice, and attend the APTA Pediatrics Virtual Annual Conference. With my student membership I am able to place myself with the students, new professionals, and experienced clinicians who are making changes to the realm of pediatric physical therapy every day. All these experiences have put me ahead in my goal of becoming a pediatric PT and I have been able to develop as a leader and gain experience in pediatrics in ways that schools would not be able to do. The price I pay for my membership is low compared with the value I receive." - Jason Hubeny, SPT

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