The Sports Physical Therapy Residency at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals gives physical therapy graduates and clinicians the specialized skills and hands-on experience to provide advanced physical therapy to athletes in a clinical setting and on the field.

Accredited by the American Board of Physical Therapy Residency and Fellowship Education (ABPTRFE), the Sports Physical Therapy Residency is a unique opportunity to learn from respected specialists at UCSF Benioff’s Sports Medicine Center for Young Athletes, many of whom are internationally recognized for their contributions to education, research, and practice management.

Sports Physical Therapy residents receive a rich curriculum that includes rigorous course work and training in physical therapy for athletes and guidance from experienced mentors. The residents will be exposed to a patient load that is sports-related in higher than 80% of cases. Patient ages range from 5-25 years. The clinical environment includes gait and motion analysis, antigravity treadmills and state-of-the-art modalities.

The residents will provide athletic event coverage at local high schools in the Bay Area. Each resident will be assigned a primary-mentor and a content-mentor during the residency. Our collaboration with UCSF Physical Therapy Orthopedic Residency provides ample exposure to regional and nationally recognized experts in sports physical therapy.

The mission of UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals Sports Physical Therapy Residency is to provide a comprehensive post-professional didactic and clinical training to physical therapists who seek to develop advanced clinical decision making, manual, and diagnostic skills in sports physical therapy.

  • Program Length: 12 months

  • Program Start: August 1st each year

We accept 1 resident every year. 

Requirements for successful graduation include completing all the hour requirements laid out by the ABPTRFE, including passing a written exam, completing two live patient exams, and completing two Critically Appraised Topics.


The curriculum will:

  • Train residents to provide advanced patient-centered and evidence-based care to better serve both the community and the profession, in the clinic and on a sports-field

  • Prepare residents to meet the criteria for Specialist Certification in Sports set by the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialists


The UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals Sports PT Residency Program is a full-time, 12 months long program. A sports resident’s typical week will include:

  • 26 hours of patient care
  • 7 hours of on-field experience in athletic settings
  • 4 hours of 1:1 clinical mentoring
  • 3 hours of instructional hours and meetings.

Tuition and Benefits

Residents will receive a salary and benefits during the residency program, which will be according to UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals Policy and Procedures.

Annual tuition for the program is $2,500, due at the start of the residency program.

Admissions Requirements

Qualifications for the UCSF Benioff Sports Physical Therapy Residency program include:

  • Graduate of CAPTE accredited physical therapy program and/or have achieved a graduate degree from a U.S.-based regionally accredited program. Alternatively, you may have a “Certificate of Professional Degree Equivalency” from evaluating agencies approved by the Physical Therapy Board of California.
  • Proof of California physical therapy licensure prior to the residency start date
  • One of the following designations for emergency response prior to beginning the residency. Such designation(s) must be obtained by the candidate at their own cost.
  • Certified athletic trainer (ATC)
  • Certified emergency response for athlete course (ERA) through Cogent Steps, which is an approved provider by ABPTS
  • Licensed emergency medical technician (EMT)
  • Meet all eligibility requirements to be employed as a practicing physical therapist at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals

Application Process

Applications must be completed as directed by the Residency and Fellowship Physical Therapy Centralized Application Service (RF-PTCAS).

RF-PTCAS Application Requirements:

  • Submit a current CV, which includes all continuing education completed, both formal and informal.
  • Submit a personal statement, no longer than 500 words, which includes your interest in furthering professional development related to the UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals’ Sports Physical Therapy Residency program.
  • Submit letters of recommendation from two physical therapists.

Application Deadline: December 1st of the previous year

This application deadline may be extended at the discretion of the program faculty under the approval of the Program Director.

Applicant who is accepted in the UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland Sports Physical Therapy Residency Program will be required to complete the UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals employment application.

Phone Interviews: Mid-December

Panel Interviews: Mid-January

Final Decisions: Early February

Start Date: 1st week of August

SCS Specialization

Our intensive 12-month residency program is designed to train high-quality residents and prepare them for success on the SCS examination offered by ABPTS.

The sports physical therapy residency program has a 75% program completion rate. You can find more information regarding our previous graduates below.


  • Leone Baron, PT, DPT
    Since graduating from the UCSF Benioff Children's Hospitals Sports PT Residency, Leone has successfully passed the SCS exam, on her 1st attempt. She has accepted employment with the Sports Medicine Center for Young Athletes at UCSF Benioff Children's Hospitals. She continues to apply the knowledge and expertise she gained during her sports residency on a daily basis, helping athletes of all levels return to their active lifestyle goals. In addition, we are excited to have Leone become part of the sports residency faculty, as a lecturer.
  • Gaganpreet Sidhu, PT, DPT
    Gagan successfully graduated from UCSF Benioff Children's Hospitals Sports PT Residency in July 2022 and then proceeded to join our team of sports PTs in the Sports Medicine Center for Young Athletes at UCSF Benioff Children's Hospitals.
  • Ariana Gomez, PT, DPT
    Ariana successfully graduated from UCSF Benioff Children's Hospitals Sports PT Residency in August 2023 and is sitting for the SCS exam in March 2024.


UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Sports PT Residency has been granted initial accreditation through September 30, 2025. Accreditation by ABPTRFE is a reliable indicator of the value and quality of the Residency Program. In receiving initial accreditation, the program demonstrated its commitment to educational standards and ethical business practices indicative of quality, accountability, and continuous improvement that enhances the physical therapy profession.


  • Neeraj Baheti, PT, DPT, SCS, OCS, CSCS, Program Director, Sports Physical Therapy Residency Program

  • David Arakawa, PT, MPT, SCS, Program Coordinator, Sports Physical Therapy Residency Program
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Sports Physical Therapy Residency