Therapy Services

One-to-One Attention at Every Visit

At West Des Moines Physical Therapy, we care for adults and children with conditions and injuries affecting the muscles, joints and nerves. We'll work with you 1:1 and, because we never overlap appointment times, you can always count on our full and focused attention. You'll be treated exclusively by a licensed doctor of physical therapy throughout your plan of care.

Does your child need physical therapy? We have special expertise in helping babies, toddlers, kids and teens overcome challenges and build skills. 


Orthopedic Conditions

Increase your mobility and reduce the pain that comes with bone and joint problems. Many orthopedic issues and injuries benefit from physical therapy, including:

  • Muscle strains and tears

  • Tendonitis and tendonosis

  • Bursitis

  • Joint sprains

  • Osteoarthritis

  • Rheumatoid arthritis

My job requires lots of time on the computer, and repetitive use was causing wrist and elbow problems. I desperately wanted to avoid carpal tunnel surgery. You made that possible. Thank you!

Spine and Neck Pain

Living with spine and neck pain can limit every area of your life. Our therapists are skilled at treating spine pain so you can return to the activities you love. Our expertise includes:

  • Low back pain and back stiffness

  • Neck pain

  • Headaches

  • Whiplash

  • Bulging or herniated discs

  • Spondylolisthesis

  • Degenerative disc disease

  • Radiculopathy

  • Sciatica

  • Rib dysfunction

My neck pain has significantly decreased, and my range of motion has significantly increased. I can back out of my driveway and make lane changes with confidence now that I can rotate my neck for traffic checks.


Sports Injuries

Sports injuries can keep you on the sidelines if they’re not treated properly. We’re passionate about treating athletes and challenge our patients to reach peak performance during rehabilitation. We help kids and adults with a range of sports injuries, including:

  • Ligamentous knee injuries (ACL, PCL, MCL, LCL)

  • Meniscus tears

  • Runner’s knee (IT band syndrome)

  • Jumper’s knee (patella tendonitis)

  • Patellofemoral syndrome

  • Stress fractures

  • Overhead throwing injuries (rotator cuff strains/tears, labral tears, shoulder impingement)

  • Tennis elbow (lateral epicondylitis)

  • Golfer’s elbow (medial epicondylitis)

  • Shin splints

  • Achilles tendonitis

  • Plantars fasciitis

I wanted to get back to competitive athletics following an injury, and Erich made sure to challenge me so I was ready to go by the end of eight weeks of therapy. He was great to work with and made the whole process very streamlined for me.


Before and After Surgery

Don’t let surgery set you back. Doing rehabilitation before and after surgery is the best way to build strength and regain function.

We provide 1:1 support for procedures such as:

  • Total joint replacement

  • Rotator cuff repair

  • Joint arthroscopic procedures

  • Tendon/labral repairs

  • Spine procedures

  • Fracture repair

Erich was my therapist during recovery from total knee replacement surgery. He was patient and persistent in helping me work harder than I thought I could. I am now walking and am stronger and healthier.


Balance Issues and Fall Prevention

Balance can be impaired for many reasons including stroke, neurological injury, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis and the normal process of aging.

Physical therapy helps improve balance, protect against falls and get you safely back on your feet. Expect us to work closely with you and your family members to optimize independence and safety.

EDS and Joint Hyper-Mobility Syndromes

Patients with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (EDS) and other joint hyper-mobility syndromes can benefit from specialized physical therapy involving joint hyper-mobility management. Our clinician Erich Ottervanger has expertise in this approach, which educates patients on appropriate activity selection and how to use their joints appropriately to avoid injury. 

The goals of joint hyper-mobility management are to improve muscular strength and tone through gentle exercise. This helps patients improve their quality of life and potentially avoid the early onset of joint arthritis.

EDS is a group of relatively rare genetic disorders of connective tissue, characterized by skin hyper-extensibility, joint hyper-mobility and tissue fragility. Patients can experience frequent joint dislocations and struggle with joint pain and muscular pain. It’s important to see a physical therapist who is well educated in the treatment of EDS. 

Aquatic Therapy

What is Aquatic Therapy?

Aquatic therapy is a specialized treatment approach in physical therapy that can help with a variety of conditions. Water’s unique properties can assist with strengthening and stabilizing, all while decreasing pain and unloading joints.

The pool is kept at a comfortable 94-98°F to help increase comfort and promote physiological relaxation. Our trained therapists will help to improve your strength, balance, and functional ability through use of the water as well as combining land-based and aquatic exercise to improve your functional ability on land.

Who Can Benefit?

Adults and Children with any of the following conditions can benefit from aquatic physical therapy:

  • Difficulty or pain with land based activities

  • Fear of falling

  • Balance Difficulties

  • Weight bearing limitations

  • Arthritis

  • Chronic Pain

  • Neurological deficits

Vertigo and Vestibular / Inner Ear Disorders

The vestibular system, involving the inner ear and brain, helps to regulate balance and movement. Problems with the system can cause dizziness, lack of equilibrium and imbalance. We’re trained in vestibular rehabilitation and use evidenced-based approaches - including habituation, gaze stabilization and balance training - to reset the vestibular system.  

If you experience sudden dizziness or a spinning sensation, you may have vertigo. One of the most common causes of vertigo is benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV), which can be corrected with physical therapy. We strive to accommodate same-day referrals and walk-in appointments for evaluation and treatment of BPPV.

Dry Needling

What is Dry Needling: 

Dry Needling is a type of physical therapy intervention that uses a thin filiform needle inserted into muscles and other soft tissues to reduce pain, decrease muscle tightness, and improve mobility. Dry needling is often accompanied by movement education and strengthening to improve overall function. 

Who can benefit:

A wide variety of diagnoses can benefit from dry needling treatment including joint pain and stiffness, tendonitis, muscle spasms, muscle strains, overuse injuries, headaches, and many, many more.