This course will provide physical and occupational therapists with knowledge and skills in managing older adults with a variety of musculoskeletal conditions that impact their movement and function. Musculoskeletal pain and dysfunction is a leading cause of disability in older adults. Lower extremity arthritic conditions and aging spine problems such as lumbar spinal stenosis frequently result in decreased fitness levels and increased fall risk. This course will focus on evidence-based treatments to address these problems, including hands-on manual therapy and exercise management strategies, for the older adult.


This course is delivered in a blended learning fashion, combining online and on-site learning experiences to facilitate participant learning. An interactive and media-rich online precourse is provided to participants 30 days in advance of an intensive 2-day on-site laboratory weekend.  The online precourse provides an evidence-based overview using a series of web-based video presentations, key evidence summaries and primary research articles.

The on-site lab intensive weekend provides participants with hands-on demonstration and practice of selected examination and manipulative techniques. The course will have a student to faculty ratio of no greater than 18:1. An online post-test and on-site skill assessment are used to reinforce course objectives and assess learning.

Successful completion of this course requires 80% or higher on post-test, skills assessment and attendance at each onsite day.

Target Audience: Intermediate level course open to licensed physical and occupational therapists.

Credits: 31 contact hours (16 online and 15 on-site) from EIM Institutes of Health Professions

EIM Program Applicability: None. This course must be taken in conjunction with an 8-week online management course to earn constructive credit towards EIM’s Geriatric Certification program.

Prerequisites: None

Appropriate dress: Participants are asked to bring appropriate attire for lab sessions (i.e. shorts and t-shirts and sports bras for women) and air-conditioned environments throughout the day (i.e. warm-up or work-out clothes).


Upon completing this course, you’ll be able to:

  1. Analyze the different elements of patient/client management for the older adult with selected musculoskeletal disorders
  2. Select and apply tests and measures used in the examination of the person with disorders of the musculoskeletal system.
  3. Demonstrate appropriate manual and manipulative therapy and therapeutic exercise for older adults with selected musculoskeletal disorders
  4. Discuss appropriate exercise dosing and progression for older adults
  5. Appraise the role of the physical and occupational therapist in prevention of disorders of the musculoskeletal system.
  6. Discuss and analyze evidence for the management of persons with musculoskeletal disorders.
  7. Most importantly – be able to apply this stuff to your clinical practice next week!


Required and supplementary articles are listed in each weekly module and can be downloaded from the Moodle Learning Management System.


Occupational Therapists: This course meets criteria under EIM’s AOTA Provider #10170. For more information on this course, click here.

If you are in need of a disability-related accommodation, please contact [email protected]. We will process requests for reasonable accommodation and will provide reasonable accommodations where appropriate, in a prompt and efficient manner. For more information please see the Accommodation Procedures for Disabled Participants page.

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