Carl DeRosa, PT, PhD, DPT, FAPTA

Carl DeRosa Professor
Northern Arizona University
Physical Therapy, Flagstaff Campus
Blg 66
Phone: 928-523-7441
Fax: 928-523-9289

Carl DeRosa PT, PhD, DPT, FAPTA


Dr. DeRosa is Professor of the Physical Therapy at Northern Arizona University.  He was the Chair of the Program for 17 years, and one of the three founders of the physical therapy program at that institution.  He has received several awards from the university in recognition of his outstanding teaching.  Dr. DeRosa completed his physical therapy education at the Mayo Clinic, and earned his masters and doctoral degrees in Human Anatomy.  Because of his extensive academic experiences, he has served as a consultant to numerous physical therapy educational programs and has held adjunct faculty positions at the University of Indianapolis, Cleveland State University, and Rocky Mountain University.  His scholarly interests over the past 20 years have been focused on the anatomy and mechanics of the human spine and shoulder girdle with particular emphasis on their relationship to orthopedics, sport, and rehabilitation sciences.  He has co-authored several textbooks including Perspectives in Functional Anatomy series, which includes Mechanical Low Back Pain, Mechanical Neck Pain, and Mechanical Shoulder Pain, in addition to several textbook chapters, journal articles, and two home study series.  In addition to research and invited presentations throughout the United States, Dr. DeRosa has presented his work at numerous national and international conferences including the International Federation of Manual Therapists, World Congress on Low Back and Pelvic Pain.  He has also been an invited speaker at the American Sports Medicine National Baseball Meetings and the International Society of Weight Training Injury Specialists.  Dr. DeRosa has served the professional association through numerous roles.  He has been a Delegate and Chief Delegate to the American Physical Therapy Association House of Delegate, served on the Taskforce on Normative Model of Physical Therapy Education, served as Chair of the Advisory Panel on Physical Therapy Education, American Physical Therapy Association, participated as a member of the: Coalition for Consensus on Post Professional Physical Therapy Education, and participated as a member of the: Coalition for Consensus: A Consensus Conference on Professionalism.  In recognition of his contributions to the profession of physical therapy, Dr. DeRosa was awarded the Lucy Clair Service Award and in addition, was selected by the American Physical Therapy Board of Directors as a Maley Lecturer.   In 2007 he was selected as a Catherine Worthingham Fellow of the American Physical Therapy Association.  As evidence of his business acumen, he is a member of the Flagstaff 40, a thinktank of professional business leaders in northern Arizona. 

Professional Interests

Dr. DeRosa has had a long-standing professional interest in orthopedic physical therapy, sports performance, population health, and wellness programs across the age spectrum.  One of his keen interests in regards to orthopedics is lumbopelvic and cervicothoracic anatomy, biomechanics, and clinical management of pain and functional changes associated with injuries, age related changes, and pathologies associated with these regions.  He has been one of the first national presenters on the concept of using metabolic conditioning principles in the management of orthopedic conditions as a complement to various manual therapy interventions. 

His professional interests are also in the area of business modeling and effective management of the outpatient physical therapy environment.  Included with this are strategies to create value to consumers of physical therapy, cost/benefit ratio of the timing of a physical therapist’s intervention, professionalism in Practice, and collaborative opportunities within the emerging health care environment.

Education and Certifications

Ohio University, Athens Ohio; BS in Zoology
Mayo Clinic, Rochester Minnesota; Certificate in Physical Therapy,
UC Davis, Davis California, MS Anatomy
Union Institute and University; PhD Anatomy

Teaching area/ Courses Taught

Clinical Anatomy, Orthopedic Physical Therapy, Clinical Exercise Physiology, Health and Wellness, Business Administration of Physical Therapy Practice, Professional Development.

Recent Publications/ Professional Presentations

  • DeRosa C: Utilizing Metabolic Conditioning Principles Via Muscle Slings to Manage Low Back Pain.  8th InterdisciplinaryWorld Congress on Low Back and Pelvic Pain.  Dubai UAE, October 2013
  • DeRosa C: Integration of Wellness into Low Back Pain Management. Western Region Spine Symposium. University of S California Medical School.  Los Angeles, CA 2012
  • DeRosa C: Integration of Orthopaedics and Cardiopulmonary Practice into a Sustainable Model of Wellness Practice.  APTA National Conference, National Harbor MA, 2011
  • Sustainable Business Models for Wellness in Physical Therapy Practice, APTA PPS National Meeting, Las Vegas 2012
  • DeRosa C: Use of Manipulation in Clinical Practice. in  Case Files in Physical Therapy, Brummit E Ed, McGraw Hill, 2012
  • Kigin, C, Wolf, S, DeRosa C, et al.  Physical Therapy and Society Summit.  Physical Therapy.  Physical Therapy,  90:1555-1567, 2010
  • Mintken P, DeRosa C, Little T, Smith B: Moving past sleight of hand.  J Ortho and Sports Phys Ther, 40:253 - 255, 2010
  • DeRosa C: A Healthy Environment. Impact, May 13-15, 2010
  • Ellenbecker T, DeRosa C, DeCarlo M: Functional Progressions in Sport. Human Kinetics Publishers, 2009
  • DeRosa C: Core Stabilization Concepts.  Ed: Kibler Ben, MD.  Orthopaedic Knowledge Update: Sports Medicine 4. American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, 2009
  • Mintken P, DeRosa C, Little T, Smith B:  A Model for Standardizing Manipulation Terminology in Physical Therapy Practice. J of Man and Manipulative Therapy, 16:50-56, 2008.
  • Mintken P, DeRosa C, Little T, Smith B: A Model for Standardizing Manipulation Terminology in Physical Therapy Practice. (For the Academy of Orthopaedic Manual Therapists).  J of Orthop and Sports Phys Ther 38(3): A1-A6, 2008
  • DeRosa C, Porterfield J: Anatomical Linkages and Muscle Slings of the Lumbopelvic Region Churchill Livingstone on.  In Movement, Stability and Lumbopelvic Pained.. Stoeckart R, Vleeming A, Mooney V; 2007
  • Porterfield J, DeRosa C: Asymmetrical Overload Syndrome.  In Movement, Stability and Lumbopelvic Pain, ed Stoeckart R, Vleeming A, Mooney V.  Churchill Livingstone 2007
  • DeRosa C, Thompsen K: Post Operative Management of Orthopaedic Surgeries: The Lumbar Spine.  Orthopaedic Section of American Physical Therapy Association 2005