One of the many ways you can advance your career as a physical therapist is to complete additional physical therapy certifications. By completing advanced certifications, you can improve the level of care you can provide to patients and expand your expertise in the field. Completion of additional certifications can help you continually take advantage of continuing education courses and give you a way to specialize in areas that you’re passionate about.

Physical therapy employers, including Upstream Rehabilitation, are always on the lookout for qualified physical therapists who pursue specializations and certifications to advance their career. Upstream Rehabilitation offers continuing education courses, certifications, residency, and fellowship programs through our Institute of Advanced Musculoskeletal Treatments (IAMT) and Upstream Rehab Institute (URI).

Take a look at some of the physical therapy certifications you should consider to advance your career.

Certified Orthopedic Manual Therapist (COMT) Certification

The Certified Orthopedic Manual Therapist (COMT) certification is an excellent certification for those physical therapists who are looking to improve their ability to examine and treat patients. On the path to completing this certification, clinicians will work to develop their ability to examine and treat patients by improving their clinical reasoning skills through the use of evidence-based techniques.

Clinicians will focus on identifying the patient’s symptoms at the source in addition to other causative factors. Physical and occupational therapists who pursue this certification will place a strong emphasis on patient outcomes and improving function through constant assessment.

Advanced Manual Therapist (ACOMT) Certification

The next step past the COMT for every physical therapist to consider is the Advanced Manual Therapist (ACOMT) certification. To complete this certification, clinicians will take not only the courses required to meet the COMT certification, but take additional courses in thrust manipulation, modern pain science, and reflective clinical reasoning. This certification is designed to fully integrate not only advanced manual techniques to add to the clinician’s toolbox, but to also enhance clinical reasoning for complex patients to achieve superior outcomes.

Dry Needling (DN) Certification

Dry Needling Therapy is one of the most popular treatment options for musculoskeletal issues that can contribute to pain and dysfunction. By completing the Dry Needling Certification, physical therapists will develop a deeper awareness of anatomy, curate their palpating skills and learn safe strategies for integrating this tool into their practice. Throughout this course series, the learner can expect a focus on clinical reasoning, theory, tactile skill, and scientific rationale for the application of dry needling.

Pelvic Health (PH) Certification

At least 45% of women report pelvic health issues and there is substantial evidence to support that pelvic health problems equally affect people of all genders and fitness levels. With an increasing amount of pelvic health disorders reported in women as they age, physical therapists are needed to help provide exceptional levels of care, and the Pelvic Health certification is one of the certifications physical therapists should consider pursuing to advance their career and empower them to treat this patient population.

Through the Pelvic Health certification coursework, learners including occupational and physical therapists as well as assistants, will work to develop an understanding of the role and anatomy of the pelvic floor muscles and their integration to the rest of the body to develop an appropriate treatment plan and coordinate with other healthcare professionals.. In addition, learners will work to accurately identify pelvic floor dysfunction in all ages and genders to develop intervention strategies to address a wide variety of pelvic conditions using evidence-based practice techniques.

Orthopedic Proficiency (OPC) Certification

The Orthopedic Proficiency certification is a great option for those physical therapist assistants who wish to be seen as a movement expert that can integrate advanced technical skills and pain neuroscience with comprehensive exercise prescription to skillfully help manage patients along with the entire healthcare team.

During the coursework for the OPC certification, clinicians will work to improve their understanding and knowledge of how pain works and how it can impact those affected by it. Clinicianswill then work to improve their ability to prescribe exercises along the continuum of the rehabilitation process.

Vestibular (Cert. VT) Certification

The Vestibular certification coursework can help physical therapists develop their ability to implement evidence-informed vestibular rehabilitation techniques. Clinicians will work to develop their skills in diagnosing vestibular impairments, mastering canalith reposition techniques, identifying and managing concussions, and developing expertise in vestibular rehabilitation therapy.

Advance Your Career with Upstream Rehabilitation

Physical therapists who are looking to elevate and advance their careers should consider completing additional certifications as part of their continuing education requirements. By successfully completing additional certifications that are in demand across the industry, you can not only improve your ability to provide better care, increase your ability to provide different types of care, pursue care areas you are passionate about, and become a more well-rounded clinician that employers like Upstream Rehabilitation love.

At Upstream Rehabilitation, we provide our clinicians with the ability to pursue clinical excellence through industry-leading continuing education courses and structured clinical career tracks that inspire professional development and personal growth opportunities. Upstream Rehabilitation provides 20% off in-house continuing education courses through IAMT and one free in-house continuing education course through IAMT during your third-year rotation.

Upstream Rehabilitation and our family of brands are hiring passionate and qualified physical therapists all across the nation as we continue to expand. Browse and apply to open physical therapy job opportunities with Upstream Rehabilitation today!


  • “Continuing Education for Physical Therapists.” Upstream Rehab Institute, 8 Feb. 2021,
  • “IAMT – Institute of Advanced Musculoskeletal Treatments.” IAMT,
  • Gyhagen, Maria, et al. “Clustering of Pelvic Floor Disorders 20 Years after One Vaginal or One Cesarean Birth – International Urogynecology Journal.” SpringerLink, Springer London, 24 Feb. 2015,