Therapists at work

About Us


The Hand Rehabilitation Section of the APTA promotes rehabilitation of the hand and upper extremity within the profession of physical therapy, the medical community, and the general public. The Section serves to mentor, educate, promote research, and respond to the ever changing needs and interests of its membership.


By 2020, the Hand Rehabilitation Section of the APTA will be recognized by consumers and other health care practitioners as the leaders and experts in the examination, rehabilitation and prevention of hand and upper extremity impairments. To these ends, the Section will increase the introduction of physical therapists to the specialty of hand therapy, provide effective mentoring by experienced clinicians, and provide information about educational opportunities.


Click here to download bylaws.

Member Benefits and How to Join

If you are interested in joining the Hand Rehabilitation Section, please visit the membership page on APTA’s website. Under Chapters & Sections, click “Add a Section” (you MUST be a current member of APTA).

Your choice to pursue a special interest in upper extremity rehabilitation gives you access to resources through which you can explore all areas of hand therapy. Benefits of belonging to the Hand Rehabilitation Section are:

  • SECTION NEWSLETTER: Published four times annually, Hand Prints provides information on clinical issues, treatment protocols, course advertisements, listings, Section activities and announcements.
  • CONTINUING EDUCATION OPPORTUNITIES: Active members receive discounts on registration fees for Section sponsored continuing education programming.
  • LEGISLATIVE REPRESENTATION: Our Section legislative chair, in partnership with APTA, lobbies for and notifies the members of issues that affect the practice of hand therapy for physical therapists. The Section also collaborated with APTA and the United States Department of Labor to develop industrial guidelines to prevent the occurrence of CTDs. Historically, we have leaders in supporting PT-PAC, which insures our voice is heard on Capitol Hill.
  • COMMITTEE PARTICIPATION: Our Section offers members the opportunity to participate in a variety of committee activities including legislation, research, nominating, bylaws, professional relations, and public relations.
  • NETWORKING: Our Section facilitates networking among its members through biannual business meetings, publications, website, online Listserv, and continuing education courses. Additionally, any of our Board of Directors welcome member questions, concerns and requests for mentorship.
  • PROMOTE RESEARCH: Our Section is committed to funding clinical research that examines hand and upper extremity practice issues. (See research grant information below.) Dissemination of clinical research is propagated through platform and poster presentations at the Combined Sections Meeting of the APTA.
  • LISTSERV: A virtual community of Section members where you can collaborate, and engage in lively dialogue with your colleagues. If you are attending CSM and want to coordinate travel plans you can use the forum to reach out to other section members. The Listserv is your bridge to other section members with an interest in Hand PT. If you are interested in joining, please login to the member’s only area for instructions.
  • SUBSCRIPTION DISCOUNT TO THE JOURNAL OF HAND THERAPY: If you are a current member, please login to the Members Only area for instructions on how to purchase your subscription.

Advertising Opportunities

Advertising is available in our quarterly newsletter, Hand Prints and our website. By choosing to advertise with us, you will be connecting with members who have an interest and specialization in hand and upper extremity therapy. For information about submitting an ad and to review our deadlines, please download the Advertising Guidelines and Order Form.

Advertising Policy

Partners Program

Are you interested in the area of hand and upper extremity rehabilitation?

Are you:

  • A physical therapist or physical therapy assistant from a country other than the United States?
  • An occupational therapist?
  • Other health professional or researcher (not eligible for APTA membership)?
  • Company with products of interest to hand rehabilitation experts?

Then you are eligible to become a partner to our Section. Please download a copy of our brochure and order form for more information and to apply!

Research Grant Available Through HRS Information

The Leslie Harris Lindsey Grant for Research in the Hand and Upper Quadrant Quarter is a $5,000 grant. To qualify for funding, the study must be designed to examine the efficacy of a treatment approach, or the meaningfulness of an examination procedure used by physical therapists in hand and upper quarter rehabilitation.

Click here to download a complete description of the grant.

The deadline to submit your application is August 15 of each year. Click here for grant guidelines. Please contact the section at with questions.

History: Leslie Harris Lindsey PT, CHT was a treating hand therapist in Louisville Kentucky, running her own private practice with her husband, Mark Lindsey, for many years. She received the Outstanding Service Award from the Hand Rehabilitation Section for her many roles within the Section including, Secretary, President and Professional Relations Chair. She was instrumental in maintaining the financial stability of the Section, development of this research grant and in the certification of Hand Therapists. In 2012, after Leslie lost her battle with breast cancer, the Section renamed this Grant in her honor to commemorate these accomplishments.

Officers and Committees


Jane Fedorczyk, PT, PhD, CHT, ATC


Mia Erickson PT, EdD, CHT


Scott Stevenson, PT, CHT


Leah Michelsen, PT, DPT


Emily Altman, PT, DPT, CHT, OCS


Carla Cleary PT, DPT, CHT


Jamie Grigsby, PT


Teri Bielefeld PT, CHT


Stacy Lynn Hite PT, DPT, MS, CHT


Susan Duff, PT, EdD, OT, CHT


Chair: Saj Thomas
Wen-Yau Jennie Yen, PT, DPT, CHT
Danielle Watts, PT, DPT, CHT


Marsha Lawrence, PT, DPT, CHT

Executive Director

Cynthia Sliwa
1055 North Fairfax Street
Suite 205
Alexandria, VA 22314