On-Demand Webinar
RST CE logo

Visit us at:
Facebook  Twitter


Physics for Therapists

Program ID : IC53.2019
Webinar Length of Time: 1.0 Hour

Link to view the lecture presentation:




Rachel Hibbs, DPT
University of Pittsburgh, United States

Dr. Rachel Hibbs received a BS in Rehabilitation Science from The University of Pittsburgh in 2010 and completed her DPT training at The University of Pittsburgh in 2013. She is a spinal cord injury research clinician at the University of Pittsburgh and UPMC Model System Spinal Cord Injury Program. She has presented at multiple national conferences and is clinical faculty for the University of Pittsburgh Departments of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science.

Steven Mitchell, OTR/L, ATP
Cleveland VAMC

Steve Mitchell, OTR/L, ATP is an occupational therapist who has provided custom mobility equipment to veterans with spinal cord injuries, multiple sclerosis, and ALS through the SCI/D Service at the Cleveland VA Medical Center in Cleveland, Ohio. Today, he will demonstrate how Hybrid Alternative Driving Systems can provide better complex rehab outcomes. Hybrid Alernative Driving Systems combine characteristics of more than one system to assign key functions to other points of control.

Presented at the 35th International Seating Symposium, Pittsburgh, PA USA

Note: Faculty for this activity have been required to disclose all relationships with any proprietary entity producing health care goods or services, with the exemption of nonprofit or government organizations and non-healthcare related companies.

  • No conflicts have been disclosed.


As seating therapists, we make common assumptions based on general physics principles that influence how we make decisions for nearly every aspect of seating. But are those assumptions correct? A client presents with tetraplegia, asymmetrical spasticity, and worsening scoliosis; one might intervene by adding precisely placed lateral supports to his power wheelchair to utilize three points of contact and to prevent worsening of his scoliosis. Utilizing three points of contact to disperse force is logical, but what if he 6’2” and the supports are 4” x 6” pads? How much force is the curve of his trunk exerting and can those supports effectively influence his posture? Do we need to consider that he has nontraditional forces affecting his posture? A client with shoulder injuries should utilize the lightest possible configuration for her manual wheelchair to decrease overuse syndromes. The evidence supports that logic, but do a few pounds saved in chair frame weight matter? Perhaps if her pain is related to lifting the chair. However, decreasing the overall weight of the chair by a few pounds would have little impact on rolling resistance and the forces exerted on her shoulders when propelling the wheelchair, the more likely culprit of her overuse injuries, would be negligibly affected. The authors’ do not contend the basic principles of seating based on biomechanics literature and physics principles, instead challenge that in some contexts they need to be questioned.

Learning Objectives

Upon viewing this webinar, participants will be able to:


CEU Registration and Cost

0.100 Continuing Education Units (CEUs) will be awarded to individuals for viewing 1.0 hours of instruction.
The cost for the webinar is $59.00

Instructions to Obtain CEUs

go to the RSTCE web site at: www.rstce.org

    1. Enter username and password or create new profile
    2. Select Webinars
    3. Select the webinar:IC53.2019 Physics for Therapists
    4. Complete your registration

A payment confirmation will be sent via e-mail.
(Allow 10 minutes for the database to process payment and send a confirmation e-mail).

After viewing the webinar

    1. log back into database and Select Post Tests and Evaluation for:
      IC53.2019 Physics for Therapists
    2. Select and complete Post Tests and Evaluations

You will receive your CEU Certificate via e-mailed as a PDF file (Please allow 10 minutes for the database to process your certificate and send it to your e-mail)

The University of Pittsburgh, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences awards Continuing Education Units to individuals who enroll in certain educational activities. The CEU is designated to give recognition to individuals who continue their education in order to keep up-to-date in their profession. (One CEU is equivalent to 10 hours of participation in an organized continuing education activity). Each person should claim only those hours of credit that he or she actually spent in the educational activity.
The University of Pittsburgh is certifying the educational contact hours of this program and by doing so is in no way endorsing any specific content, company, or product. The information presented in this program may represent only a sample of appropriate interventions.

The University of Pittsburgh, as an educational institution and as an employer, values equality of opportunity, human dignity, and racial/ethnic and cultural diversity. Accordingly, the University prohibits and will not engage in discrimination or harassment on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, sex, age, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, disability, or status as a disabled veteran or a veteran of the Vietnam era.

Further, the University will continue to take affirmative steps to support and advance these values consistent with the University's mission. This policy applies to admissions, employment, access to and treatment in University programs and activities. This is a commitment made by the University and is in accordance with federal, state, and/or local laws and regulations. For information on University equal opportunity and affirmative action programs and complaint/grievance procedures, please contact: William A. Savage, Assistant to the Chancellor and Director of Affirmative Action (and Title IX and 504 Coordinator), Office of Affirmative Action, 901 William Pitt Union, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA 15260, 412- 648-7860

Updated | 06.27.2019