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Stephen C. Helton, PT

Manual Orthopedic Physical Therapist

Hillsborough Physical therapist

Stephen C. Helton

Stephen C. Helton, PT has had a life-long interest in the interplay of body, mind and spirit. He was introduced to yoga and meditation while studying Biology at Wake Forest University in the 1970’s. Study at Duke University deepened his understanding of how humans and the environment impact each other.

During his time working as a landscape gardener, he discovered the appeal of Physical Therapy as a profession which would allow him to integrate these varied avenues. Caring for his mother during her long illness had helped him to develop a deeper base of patience and compassion as a foundation for his next career.

Stephen received his initial Physical Therapy training at East Carolina University, graduating in 1988. His continuing education experiences have focused into Manual therapy techniques including Maitland and Osteopathic approaches. After practice in hospital, outpatient clinics, and physician offices he felt led to launch into solo practice in 1996. Stephen distinguishes his practice from others’ in offering 1 hour sessions of individualized, focused, hands-on treatment in a quiet environment that enhances real healing.


What is Manual Physical Therapy

Manual therapy techniques include Soft Tissue Mobilization and joint mobilization.

The goal of joint mobilization is to increase motion of restricted joints. This technique uses measured movement of varying speed, force, and distance . Pressure is applied by the Physical Therapist to glide or rotate one bone in relation to another.

Soft tissue mobilization: The therapist applies firm, direct pressure to overtightened muscles also to painful and restricted tendons, ligaments, and fascia.

Muscle Energy Techniques: The patient’s muscles are actively used, on request, from a precisely controlled position against a distinctly and precisely issued therapist counterforce.

My view is that stretching and strengthening exercises can not be optimally effective until the joints are prepared to allow smooth motion.

How does your care distinguish itself? I offer one-hours sessions of direct one-on-one treatment. No aides or technicians are utilized. Cost per treatment can be much higher at hospital based therapy clinics( 3x to 4x). I believe that I offer superior value for the dollars spent on care.

My Motto: “Enhance Motion—Reduce Pain—Recover Function.”


My Services

Hands-on Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapy to loosen up stiff joints to best prepare you for corrective exercises.

You can expect focused attention for the full hour of your treatment session.

Insurance Benefits:

Blue Cross Blue Shield: I am contracted with all BCBS plans except Blue Value. Copays vary between $20 and $50 (some higher). You may access Physical Therapy without a MD referral.

Medicare: Has an 80% benefit using their contracted fee schedule. If you have a supplemental plan you may have no further financial liability. However, you must obtain a referral from your regular MD or PA or Nurse Practitioner.

Other Insurances: Some have “out of Network” benefits but usually will have deductibles at various levels. In the case of out of network services we can create arrangements which by law can not be less than the Medicare Fee schedule. You will receive the best value for your health care dollar at my practice. Charges may legally be discounted from the Medicare Fee schedule with documentation of
limited financial resources.

To make an appointment with Stephen:


Phone: 919-491-4248