WCPT pays tribute to Freddy Kaltenborn

WCPT has learned of the death of Freddy Kaltenborn, one of the founders of WCPT’s first subgroup the International Federation of Orthopaedic Manipulative Physical Therapists (IFOMPT).

Freddy began his professional career in 1943 at the Norwegian Sports University and, as an exchange student in 1944 and 1945, at a number of German sports schools. In 1949 he was certified in physical therapy by the Oslo Orthopedic Institute, Norway’s only school of physical therapy at the time.

After an apprenticeship with James Mennell and James Cyriax in London between 1952 and 1954, Freddy was certified to teach orthopaedic medicine in 1955 and returned to Norway to share his professional experiences and manual therapy system with Norwegian clinicians.

In 1958 he studied osteopathy at the British School of Osteopathy in London and he was mentored by Alan Stoddard at the London College of Osteopathy in 1962. After being approved as an osteopathic instructor in 1971, he taught as a professor at the Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine between 1977 and 1984. Freddy was certified in orthopaedic medicine and manipulative therapy by the International Seminar of Orthopaedic Medicine/Manipulative Therapy (ISOMMT) in 1973.

Freddy practised orthopaedic medicine and manipulative therapy in Norway for 32 years, from 1950 to 1982. During that time he instructed countless physical therapists, medical doctors, osteopaths, and chiropractors in manipulative treatment methods. He introduced manipulative therapy to Norwegian physical therapists in 1960 and to Nordic physicians in 1962, and was instrumental in developing manipulative therapy education and certification standards.

Throughout his professional career Freddy campaigned tirelessly for the creation of international educational standards and certification in manipulative therapy. He was a founding member the International Federation of Orthopaedic Manipulative Therapists (IFOMT), which became the first WCPT subgroup in 1978. As the first chair of IFOMT’s standard’s committee, he directed the development of IFOMT’s manipulative therapy education and certification standards, and continued as a consultant to the group for the next 16 years.

Ken Olson, President of IFOMPT, said: ‘As one of the IFOMT founders and a pioneer in the development of orthopaedic manual physical therapy worldwide, Freddy Kaltenborn was a driving force behind development of orthopaedic manual physical therapy educational standards as a requirement for IFOMPT membership. His legacy and impact on the orthopaedic manual physical therapy community will be felt far beyond his years of service. We are all indebted to Freddy for his passion and vision for OMPT worldwide.’