David M. Selkowitz, PT, PhD, DPT, OCS, DAAPM

David Selkowitz
Associate Professor
Physical Therapy
(617) 724-0252
Office Location: 
Shouse - 415

David Selkowitz has been in orthopedic out-patient physical therapy clinical practice for over 30 years, and on academic faculty for over 20 years. His expertise is in evaluation and management of musculoskeletal dysfunction, orthopedic manual therapy and exercise, clinical reasoning, thrust joint manipulation, electrotherapy, and research design and critical analysis. He has taught courses on these topics in entry-level PT programs as well as continuing education courses. Dr. Selkowitz has been a Board Certified Orthopedic Clinical Specialist for over 20 years, and is a Diplomat of the American Academy of Pain Management.
Dr. Selkowitz is also an active researcher. He was a research fellow in the Jacquelin Perry Musculoskeletal Biomechanics Research Lab at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, for the past 10 years. He has delivered numerous presentations at professional conferences and workshops on the state, national, and international levels, and has published articles in peer-reviewed journals.

Every abstract he submitted for a platform presentation at the California Physical Therapy Association (CPTA) Annual Conference in the past 10 years was ranked by peer-reviewers in the top three out of more than 50 submissions. Dr. Selkowitz was honored with the Best Research Platform Presentation Award at the CPTA annual conference. He was also honored with the Faculty Publication Award at the CPTA Annual Conference this past year for an article in the Feb. 2013 issue of JOSPT that was also selected for a Read-for-Credit Quiz and a Patient's Perspective piece by the journal. He also reviews manuscripts for several journals and abstract submissions for several conferences. 
Dr. Selkowitz has an extensive record of professional service including, in the last 10 years, two terms as the Chairperson of the California Research Special Interest Group (SIG) and one term on the Education Committee of the CPTA. Since 2004, he has served on the Board of Directors of the California Physical Therapy Fund, Inc, which funds research by physical therapists in California. He is co-founder of the California Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapy SIG, and was serving his third term as Vice Chairperson up until his recent move to Boston. Dr. Selkowitz recently completed his third term serving on the executive Council of the International Society of Electrophysiology and Kinesiology (ISEK). He has been on the Standards Committee of the International Society of Electrophysical Agents in Physical Therapy since the organization's inception 6 years ago. He also serves on the editorial board of the World Journal of Orthopedics. Dr. Selkowitz was honored with the Clarence Hultgren Service Award of the CPTA.

Research Interests

My research focuses on the effects of rehabilitation on biomechanical, functional, and quality of life outcomes in persons with musculoskeletal dysfunction.
Specifically, I am interested in identifying and assessing the effective component(s) of physical rehabilitation programs. 

Interventions studied include therapeutic exercise, electrotherapy, external supports and assistive devices as they are applied to persons with low back, patellofemoral, and shoulder dysfunctions.


Beneck GJ, Popovich JM Jr., Selkowitz DM, Azen S, Kulig K: Intensive, Progressive Exercise Improves Quality of Life Following Lumbar Microdiskectomy: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Clin Rehabil., 2014 Sep:28(9):892-901. Published online before print February 26, 2014. doi: 10.1177/0269215514525059.

Selkowitz DM, Beneck GJ, Powers CM: Which Exercises Target the Gluteal Muscles While Minimizing Activation of the Tensor Fascia Lata? Electromyographic Assessment Using Fine-Wire Electrodes. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther., 2013:43(2):54-64. Epub 16 November 2012. doi:10.2519/jospt.2013.4116 
[Publication selected for JOSPT (J Orthop Sports Phys Ther) Perspectives for Patients feature, and Read-for-Credit Quiz] 
[California Physical Therapy Association (CPTA) FACULTY PUBLICATION AWARD]

Selkowitz DM: Electrical stimulation for enhancing strength and related characteristics of human denervated skeletal muscle.  Phys Ther Rev. 2010;15:327-333. Erratum 2010;15(6).

Selkowitz DM, Rossman E, Fitzpatrick S: Effect of burst-modulated alternating current carrier frequency on current amplitude required to produce maximally-tolerated electrically-stimulated quadriceps femoris knee extension torque.  Am J Phys Med Rehabil. 2009;88:973-978.

Kulig K, Beneck GJ, Selkowitz DM, Popovich JM Jr., Ge TT, Flanagan SP, Poppert EM, Yamada K, Powers CM, Azen S, Winstein CJ, Gordon J, Samudrala S, Chen TC, Shamie N, Khoo L, Spoonamore MJ, Wang JC and Physical Therapy Clinical Research Network (PTClinResNet), The effect of an intensive, progressive exercise program on functional performance in patients post single-level lumbar microdiscectomy. Phys Ther. 2009;89:1145-1157.


BA, Anthropology, State University of New York at Buffalo (SUNYAB), Buffalo, NY
MS, Physical Therapy, Sargent College–Boston University, Boston, MA
PhD, Kinesiology, The Union Institute, Cincinnati, OH

Curriculum Vitae