ICDI YCDI 01The UAB Department of Physical Therapy prides itself on being first.

·         1st in the region to start a PT program

·         1st in Birmingham to start a DPT program

·         1st in the region to be nationally ranked

It goes without saying that when the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition needed someone to launch the I Can Do It, You Can Do It (ICDI YCDI) program in this area, UAB Physical Therapy was the first.

So in 2014, the UAB PT led ICDI YCDI program, which works with children and adults with disabilities to encourage healthy lifestyles through physical activity and good nutrition, partnered with the Alabama Institute for the Deaf and Blind’s Hellen Keller School. That year, 35 UAB PT students touched the lives of 37 AIDB children.

2016: I Can Do It, You Can Do It


ICDI YCDI 02Fast-forward to today and UAB Physical Therapy is about to launch an expanded edition of the ICDI YCDI program that is triple the size and impact of year one.

The 2016 version includes more than 150 students from UAB Physical Therapy, UAB Occupational Therapy and UAB Nutrition from the School of Health Professions plus UAB Human Studies from the School of Education. They will work with nearly 100 students from the AIDB Helen Keller School, United Cerebral Palsy of Greater Birmingham, Horizons School and the Arc of Jefferson County.

“Each group of three mentors will have two mentees to work with and when possible, the mentors will be split into inter-professional pairings so there is one student from PT, OT and Human Studies,” said David Morris, Ph.D., chair, UAB Department of Physical Therapy.

In addition, the UAB PT led ICDI YCDI program is piloting an online healthy eating resource that was developed in conjunction with UAB Nutrition and UAB eLearning. The module, funded by grants from the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition and the UAB Center for Disability Health and Rehabilitation Science, will be tested by the UAB ICDI YCDI participants. Eventually, the online healthy eating resource will be available to every ICDI YCDI program in the United States.

“The staggering growth of this program and the opportunity to be the first in the U.S. to implement an online nutrition model is a testament to the dedication and quality of UAB students,” said Morris. “It also speaks volumes of the impact this program has had on people’s lives – the lives of the people with disabilities we serve, but maybe even more so, the lives of the students which will be changed forever because of their work with the ICDI YCDI program.”