Home Jobs & Education How Much Do Physical Therapist Assistants Make?

Physical therapist assistants work under the supervision and direction of physical therapists to help patients who are regaining their strength after illnesses, injuries, and surgeries. It’s easy to wonder: how much do physical therapist assistants make?


Physical therapist assistants are typically responsible for observing the patients during therapy, helping patients perform exercises, treating patients with various techniques, and educating them about treatment options. Since physical therapist assistants are directly involved in patient care, some states require that they receive formal training and are licensed.


How much do physical therapist assistants make?

  • According to the May 2012 records from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average annual physical therapist assistant salary is $52,320.
  • In other words, the 69,810 individuals employed in this profession earn a mean hourly wage of $25.15.
  • The bottom ten percent earns an average $32,420. Meanwhile, the top ten percent in the occupation bring home an average annual salary of $72,720.
  • Physical therapist assistants employed within physical therapy offices or clinics earn an average of $51,050, while those in hospitals make less than average at $49,520.
  • The top-paying industries for this profession are home health care services at an annual average of $60,730, as well as nursing home facilities at $57,540. Throughout the nation, the highest paying physical therapist assistants are in Texas, where they make an average $65,620 each year.

Work Environment

More than half, exactly 55 percent, of all physical therapist assistants have a job in ambulatory health care services. Physical therapist assistants also can be found working in state, local, and private hospitals. They are also in nursing homes or other residential care facilities.

Most assistants work full-time. Also, they are frequently on their feet the entire day to set up equipment and help treat patients. However, about one-fourth works part-time. Some work irregular night and weekend hours to accommodate for patients’ schedules.


Employment for physical therapist assistants is expected to soar much faster than the average at a whopping 46 percent. Physical therapy services are increasingly high in demand as a result of an aging baby boomer generation. There is also the increase in need for physical rehabilitation from chronic conditions. Physical therapists should hire more assistants in order to reduce the cost of their services.


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