Benefits of Physical Therapy for Women's Health

A personalized approach to healthcare is vital. This is especially true when it comes to physical therapy for women, who experience unique health challenges and physiological changes throughout their lives, many of which may differ significantly from men’s health challenges. Our experienced physical therapists offer comprehensive physical therapy solutions for all people so they can be confident in the tailored treatment solutions for each person. Learn more about how physical therapy can support overall wellness and be a beneficial treatment option for people at every stage of life and address many common concerns and conditions.

Individualized Care

From an anatomical standpoint, all genders are more alike than not. However, due to genetic and hormonal differences, there are some differences that exist amongst the skeletal & muscular structures of different sexes. Physical therapists are adept at understanding how general health issues can impact women differently, and individualizing treatment for musculoskeletal conditions to match each individual’s needs. Therefore, physical therapy can be significant in helping women lead a fulfilling and pain-free life, regardless of their age, life stage, or hormonal status. Physical therapy can be a beneficial treatment option for those who are seeking individualized care. We work closely with our patients to ensure that they get individualized care that is tailored to their specific needs and overall wellness goals.

Physical Therapy Can Benefit Women’s Unique Health Challenges

From young athletes facing knee and foot pain to those grappling with pregnancy-induced physical discomfort, physical therapists are able to tackle a wide array of problems that may be encountered. Physical therapists help people of all ages and abilities get active, improve, prevent, or assist with managing chronic conditions, and improve function, alleviate pain, and improve overall wellness.

What Conditions Can Physical Therapy for Women Address?

Physical therapy for women can address many conditions such as incontinence, pelvic pain, bowel issues, and more. Physical therapy can be an effective non-surgical and less invasive method to empower women to improve their mobility, improve overall health, improve function, and alleviate pain. One of the most common conditions that physical therapy can help with is pelvic floor dysfunction, which can be the cause of concerns like frequent urination, loss of bladder control, and pain during sex. Physical therapists can also address common pain areas such as lower back pain caused by pregnancy, periods, or other health concerns, through tailored exercises and regimens. Additionally, physical therapists can also help support women prior to and following gynecological surgeries, helping to restore normal muscle function after surgeries like prolapse repairs, bladder slings, and gender affirming procedures. The most common reasons people may seek or be referred to physical therapy include:

  • Issues during or after Pregnancy
  • Frequent urination or loss of bladder control
  • Pain during sex
  • Chronic constipation
  • Chronic painful menstruation

Physical Therapy Can Benefit Pregnancy

Physical therapy can be a game-changer for pregnant people, addressing not only pain but also muscle, bone, and joint issues. Tailoring exercise programs to the needs of expectant parents allows them to maintain or adapt their physical activity safely throughout the pregnancy and postpartum period, helping to optimize exercise ability, prevent or treat incontinence, and reduce the risk of gestational diabetes.

Can Physical Therapy Help Alleviate Menstrual Pain?

Surprisingly, despite the commonality of menstrual pain, effective pain-reducing options are scarce, with many people relying on medications that often provide insufficient relief. However, physical therapy may offer a more active approach to addressing regular painful menstruation beyond medication. Various studies have showcased the effectiveness of physical therapy in reducing menstrual pain.

Movement and Evidence-Based Approaches for Menstrual Cramps

Movement is a cornerstone of physical therapy, and specific exercises aimed at improving the movement of the spine and abdomen have been shown to alleviate pain with menstrual cramps. Research highlights the benefits of yoga postures like the Cat, Cobra, and Fish in reducing pain, while comprehensive physical therapy programs incorporating aerobic exercises, strengthening, stretching, and relaxation techniques have also proven beneficial. Our physical therapists can help address any underlying musculoskeletal dysfunction that’s contributing to pain with menstruation and focus on giving folks the ability to self-manage their cramps with less pain.

Tackling Urinary Incontinence with Physical Therapy

The involvement of physical therapists in managing urinary incontinence (UI) is growing, as this condition’s underlying causes, like under or overactive pelvic floor muscles, fall well within the scope of physical therapy. Pelvic floor muscle (PFM) training can be an incredibly effective treatment for people that experience urinary incontinence (SUI).

Addressing the Challenges of Aging with Physical Therapy

As we age, our bodies undergo continuous transformations, particularly as they approach and navigate through the later stages of life. Aging, while a natural process, brings about changes that can affect overall quality of life. Physical therapy can help guide people through these changes with a deeper understanding of their bodies and the aging process. The goals of physical therapy for aging women are multifaceted, focusing on preventing, managing, and sometimes reversing the physical challenges that come with maturing. Specific actions, including the identification and mitigation of risk factors for falls and fractures, are key. Falls are a leading cause of injury among older adults, and physical therapy can play a crucial role in preventing them through balance training, home safety assessments, and exercises designed to improve strength and flexibility. Regular strengthening and weight-bearing exercises, as part of a physical therapy regimen, can significantly slow down the reduction in bone density that often accompanies aging. This is crucial in combating osteoporosis, a condition that poses a significant threat to women’s health as they age. Physical therapy addresses common concerns that arise with aging, including but not limited to:

  • Osteoarthritis and Osteoporosis
  • Rehabilitation Following Surgery
  • Lymphedema
  • Postmenopausal Heart Disease
  • Chronic Myofascial Pain and Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome
  • Hypermobility Syndrome, Multiple Sclerosis (MS), and Sacroiliac (SI) Joint Dysfunction
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Supporting Active Aging and Female Athletes

By focusing on strength, mobility, and pain management, physical therapy empowers women of all ages to lead active, fulfilling lives.

Women’s Health and Physical Therapy

We are committed to supporting women through every stage of life, with personalized physical therapy care that reflects their unique health needs and goals. Our expert team of physical therapists, knowledgeable in the unique health challenges women face, provides a nurturing environment where every woman can receive the personalized care they deserve. If you’re looking to improve your health through specialized women’s physical therapy, we’re here to help. With personalized care plans designed to meet your unique health needs and goals, we are committed to guiding you toward improved well-being. Request an appointment today to learn more about the benefits of physical therapy for women’s health at a PT clinic near you.


  1. López-Liria, Remedios, et al. “Efficacy of Physiotherapy Treatment in Primary Dysmenorrhea: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.” International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, vol. 18, no. 15, 23 July 2021, p. 7832, https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18157832.
  2. Yonglitthipagon, Ponlapat, et al. “Effect of Yoga on the Menstrual Pain, Physical Fitness, and Quality of Life of Young Women with Primary Dysmenorrhea.” Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies, vol. 21, no. 4, 2017, pp. 840–846, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29037637, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbmt.2017.01.014.
  3. Rakhshaee, Zahra. “Effect of Three Yoga Poses (Cobra, Cat and Fish Poses) in Women with Primary Dysmenorrhea: A Randomized Clinical Trial.” Journal of Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology, vol. 24, no. 4, Aug. 2011, pp. 192–196, www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S108331881100060X, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpag.2011.01.059.
  4. “Health Center | Women’s Health.” Choose PT, www.choosept.com/health-centers/women#:~:text=Physical%20therapists%20work%20with%20women. Accessed 12 Apr. 2024.
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