Why I Created PT Learning Lab

When bodies fail, people shouldn't have to worry about quality of care.


At some point in life, your body will fail. Tragic accidents, horrific labor, chronic pain, debilitating disease, work injuries, birth defects, or just general wear and tear with age. These things are reality. 

Imagine coming face to face with one of these challenges, yourself. Or, sitting in the room as your mother, father, spouse, or child works through the healing process.

In those painful, vulnerable, scary moments, care matters. 

Every single doctor, nurse, and therapist who shows up by your hospital bed, matters. Their education and professionalism and instincts and demeanor are all crucial in that moment. 

The problem is, anyone who has ever been in this extremely vulnerable situation knows that advocating for proper care is harder than it should be.


What I Discovered from the Field

I went into physical therapy for the same reasons most people do: because I was hooked on the idea that I could spend every day of my work life helping people heal.

After six years of clawing my way through Physical Therapy school, passing my boards, and graduating with my Doctorate of Physical Therapy, I was set. It was time to launch my career as a full-time PT and start teaching people how to leap out of wheelchairs. 

Once I landed my first job, I learned that I was COMPLETELY prepared to deal with every traumatic injury, abnormal diagnosis, patient injustice, hospital failure, health insurance battle, and physical/mental/emotional breakdown that came my way. Right? Wrong. 

Becoming a successful therapist is about so much more than passing the boards and treating patients. It’s about learning to love and value your patients, to serve them unceasingly, and to advocate for their best interest above all else. This is NOT easy. It’s a learning curve. And the only way to master it is with time, experience, and support.

If you know anything about me, you know I pride myself on being strong, independent, educated, and self-sufficient. Admitting shortcomings or weaknesses is not within a 1,000-mile radius of my wheelhouse.

Let me tell you, no one is strong enough to survive in the medical field without a community of support. 

There are too many people relying on you to try to do this alone! You are going to be physically tested and emotionally drained. Your memory is going to fail you and you’re going to have to look up answers. You’re going to make occasional poor judgement calls, face challenges with patients’ families, and have your very integrity challenged by workplace politics and healthcare policies. 

These things are inevitable. And I wanted to do something to make them all a little easier.


Why I'm Passionate about PT Education

You, my friend, have chosen a difficult but rewarding career path. I want to be the first to commend you on it. But I also want to be part of that support network that I know is absolutely necessary to succeed in it.

This is not a career in which the training stops once you graduate. You don’t get to memorize the answers for the test and then forget them as soon as the test is over. Every class you take, exam you pass, and clinical you experience, adds up to this: you being the decision maker in the room with a patient who needs you to be their hero.

That’s a lot of pressure. 

Tell me, why are we each expected to do this alone? Why aren’t there more resources that will help us study better, remember more clearly, diagnose more confidently, and go through our career more successfully? 

Quite frankly, I think it’s ridiculous. So, I created PT Learning Lab. A place where Physical Therapy students and professionals can gather and get the resources they need to be more successful and help more people.


What Can You Expect from PT Learning Lab?

First, you can expect that everything you find at PT Learning Lab is fully researched, vetted, and edited for quality and accuracy. 

You can count on everything being beautifully designed. My resources are not intended to look like your anatomy textbook. They’re intended to provide graphs, images, and text that stick in your brain so that you can recall them when you need them. 

Next, you can rely on me to release new study guides, field guides, career guides, and CEUs on a regular basis. Like I said, learning never ceases, so why should we? 

Last, you can be confident that this PT Learning Lab is backed by a community of Physical Therapists dedicated to helping other physical therapists get the resources they need. If my dream comes true, this little business of mine will morph into a full-fledged community of supportive PTs studying together, tutoring one another, and celebrating successes as a group.

Bodies fail. People deserve good care. That care starts with dedicated and knowledgeable medical professionals ready to make a difference in the world. (That’s you.)

Let's start learning,

Dr. Rachel Bradrick, DPT

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