Orthopaedic Manual Physical Therapy: From Art to Evidence was decided upon following extensive deliberation and debate. Originally targeted to be more inclusive, the text was titled, Orthopaedic Manual Therapy. Upon the advice of several of the book's contributors, who espoused the importance of focusing the text on those aspects of manual therapy that have become essential to the practice of physical therapy, the title was changed. This is not to say that all of the content contained herein has been developed, or is exclusively utilized, by physical therapists. After all, the tenets of manual therapy are not specific to any one profession and most strategies have evolved through a gradual process of formative independent and collaborative contribution from a myriad of individuals over the course of many years. The second portion of the title, From Art to Evidence, was later added for the specific intent of recognizing, embracing, and communicating the notion that OMPT, in its truest form, is the culmination and amalgamation of both art and science. As Salter stated, “Patient care is an art, but the art must be based on science.”2 The writing of this book provided the challenge of coupling science with the artful skill of developing within the reader what Stoddard described as that, “elusive tissue texture sense.”3
It is my hope that through deliberate study of these concepts, strict attention to detail, and most importantly, reflective practice, practice, practice, the reader will attain a level of proficiency that when applied judiciously will have a profound impact on those whom we serve and subsequently on the profession of physical therapy. It would do the reader well to consider the three pillars of Sackett's model of evidence- based practice when reading this text and when applying its principles.4 Let the title of this text serve as a reminder of OMPT's perplexing and sometimes conflicting nature as a science that is applied through a variety of art forms and individualized expression.