Physiotherapy: Cardiac Surgery & Pulmonology

Our Team      Photogallery

The Specialized Center of Rehabilitation and Sports Medicine

Cardiovascular Surgery and Pulmonology 

A brief overview of the Specialized Center

The Specialized Center of Rehabilitation and Sports Medicine focuses on physical therapy for adults and children. We treat patients suffering from various diseases and conditions, such as vertebrogenic disorders, neurological diseases, injuries of the locomotive system, and internal diseases. 

Yearly, we admit more than 630 patients and provide treatment for approximately 4.350 outpatients in our department. Between our other departments, we provide therapy to roughly 13.500 patients.

Our physiotherapists work within six specialized centers in the University Hospital in Motol. These centers are the Specialized Center of Cardiovascular Surgery, the Specialized Center of Neurology, the Specialized Center of Orthopedics, the Specialized Center of Pulmonology, the Spinal Cord Unit, and of course the Specialized Center of Rehabilitation and Sports Medicine. 

How will your detailed schedule look like? What type of procedures, methods or treatment can you observe? Check what can you see by shadowing every member of the mentoring team.

Is this specialty placement ideal for you?

  • This specialty is the right one for those of you, who are interested in physical therapy methods, cardiac surgery, pulmunology and sports medicine. The bond between the physiotherapist and the patient is a very strong one as we meet on regular basis and mutual trust is very important. You need to possess empathy, sensibility and patience, since the recovery from any disease or injury is a long way run, but when successful, the work is completely worth it. 

  • This specialty is ideal for you, if you aspire to become a physiotherapist, or doctor focused on cardiovascular surgery, pulmonology or orthopedics. At this type of placement you will gain a valuable insight into these fields and see their comprehensivness.

Let's take a closer look at the specialties…

Some of our physiotherapists work in our Specialized Center of Rehabilitation and Sports Medicine in the Physiotherapy Unit. The majority of our physiotherapists, however, work in other specialized centers permanently because their assistance is indispensable. For that reason, we closely cooperate with the six specialized centers within the hospital. Among these specialized centers are the Pulmonology Specialized Center and Cardiovascular Surgery Specialized Center.

Pulmonary physical therapy

To further improve our therapeutic care, we utilize many tools and devices. Among the most used are Flutter, Acapella, and Threshold PEP. The aim of cardiac surgery physical therapy is to help improve the health and well-being of patients who have undergone cardiac surgery. In order to achieve the best possible results, we need various therapeutic aids and tools: a posturograph, an electric treadmill with an integrated strain gauge platform, and others. 


Who do we take care of?

Physiotherapy at the Pulmonology Specialized Center is a broad program that helps improve the well-being of people who have chronic breathing problems, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, sarcoidosis, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis or cystic fibrosis, bronchial asthma, fluidothorax, and pneumothorax with thoracic drainage. Furthermore, we provide care for patients before and after lung surgeries, like lobectomies, pneumonectomies, and lung transplants.

Our physiotherapeutic team at the Cardiovascular Surgery Specialized Center provides care for patients who have undergone cardiac surgeries, like bypasses or valve replacements. Therapy has to start as soon as possible after their operation because cardiac surgery is very taxing on the patient and has a high chance of inducing complications such as stroke, paresis, or sepsis.

Our methods and procedures

In the process of pulmonary physical therapy, we use various methods and procedures to achieve the best possible results:

  • Training in autotherapy
  • Manual physiotherapeutic techniques
  • Various breathing strategies (e.g., autogenous drainage, PEP breathing system)
  • Correction of breathing patterns
  • Strengthening of the breathing muscles
  • Many examination methods (e.g., spirometry, x-ray, blood gas tests, bronchoscopy)

During cardiac surgery physical therapy, we perform the following procedures:

  • Respiratory physiotherapy
  • Light fitness exercise on the bed with progressively increasing intensity
  • Electrotherapy
  • Magnetic therapy

How does the usual schedule look like?

  • Our mentoring team works on a regular schedule without any fluctuations. Work here is therefore ideal for people who like fixed working hours. We focus on both inpatient and outpatient care, the minimum of 25 hours in the hospital is guaranteed.

If you are not sure whether this choice is suitable for you, don't hesitate to contact us. We will discuss your experience and motivation and come up with the best solution for you.

Our Team

Photo Jan Šibík

Mgr. Alexandra Janečková

Orthopedics Physiotherapist


Orthopedics is a very interesting field with a variety of injuries and diagnoses. I have numerous tools at my disposal, and am happily able to apply all of my knowledge and experience from university. It is amazing and motivating to see patients make immense progress in rehabilitation within a short period of time, as the subsequent improvement in their confidence is followed by better cooperation.

Why did I become a healthcare professional?

My mother is a pulmonologist, and she was a source of inspiration to me. When I saw how grateful her patients were for her help and how she made them smile again, I was strongly influenced. Later, I became a professional biathlete and cross-country skier, so I was in contact with physiotherapists almost every day. During championships in various countries, I had the opportunity to gain knowledge from the foreign physiotherapists I met. At this time, I decided to become one of them. As a university student, I spent my free time at the Military Sports Center Dukla Bánská Bystrica, where I could observe and help athletes being rehabilitated.

Injuries are common and they can happen to anyone, and for those reasons everyone encounters them sooner or later, either personally or within their circle of family and friends. It is important to have at least a general understanding of the human body, because injuries can put any person, young or old, “out of order” for a period of time. Everyone wants to be fit and healthy again, and people don´t want to depend on anyone other than themselves.


What do you love the most about your specialty?

First and foremost, I like that I can see the progress of my therapy and its direct effects on the patient. When providing therapy for patients in the outpatient facilities, I enjoy having enough time to present them with all the necessary information and to help them perform all the exercises they need. I can fulfill myself by finding a way to provide the best and most effective help to them.

What can a student see by shadowing your team?

You will see the entire physical therapy work process in Cardiology or Chronical Intensive Resuscitation Care Department, including our specific documentation procedure. I will show you examples of medical imaging (x-rays, CTs, 3D CTs) which you will use to learn how to identify fractures and other pathologies, as well as various types of osteosynthesis used in operational fracture solutions. You will learn to recognize which fractures have high stability and which do not, and how to proceed with rehabilitation based on this information. The shadowing program includes practice with different walking support tools (crutches, axillary crutches, low and high walkers) as well as many types of orthosis used for patients with specific diagnoses. At the outpatient facility, you will become familiar with diagnoses and physiotherapeutic methods and concepts (PNF elements, Spiral Dynamic Technique elements, DNS elements and the Freeman method).

Apart from being a healthcare professional...

I love sports (I dance, run, and play floorball), I like culture and I enjoy reading books.

Your motto…

Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.

Photo Jan Šibík

Marek Lekeš, DiS.

Pulmonology Physiotherapist


After graduating, I started working in the University Hospital in Motol. At the beginning of my career, I was working in multiple specialized centers in the hospital, where I provided various physiotherapeutic services. I had spent a lot of time working in the Miramare Sanatorium in Luhačovice, which is known for treating patients with lung diseases, so when the time came I made the ultimate decision to become a Pulmonology Physiotherapist.

Why did I become a healthcare professional?

As a physically and socially active person who was interested in physiology and human anatomy, I felt like I should work in the medical field. In the end, I decided to study physiotherapy and successfully graduated in 2004. I am thoroughly satisfied with my decision because I enjoy working as a physiotherapist, and the work fulfills me.

If you are interested in physiotherapy, especially respiratory therapy, I would be pleased to show you as much as possible from the field. I will make your visit to our workplace beneficial and inspiring as well as aid you with your future career choices.

What do I love the most about my specialty?

What I like about my job is meeting people of different backgrounds and getting to know their life stories. It is a very enriching experience for me. To be successful as a physiotherapist, you have to communicate well and have a good relationship with your patients. The reason for this is that physiotherapy isn’t only focused on the management of organic and functional symptoms, as it’s often necessary to understand the problems on a psychosocial level. Another thing that I enjoy about my job is searching for causes of pain and other complications of the musculoskeletal system. For me, the best reward is the feeling that comes from successful therapy.

What can you see by shadowing our team?

While shadowing, you can observe respiratory therapy techniques applied to patients with cystic fibrosis – predominantly young people who have bravely fought this genetic disease since they were born. Respiratory rehabilitation is an integral part of their treatment. You can also see patients suffering from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, idiopathic fibrosis, bronchial asthma, pleural effusion, or pneumothorax. I continuously work with people suffering from lung cancer to prepare them for lobectomies and pneumonectomies as well as perform physiotherapy on them after their surgeries. Generally, respiratory therapy consists of airway clearance techniques using different breathing and respiratory products. Respiratory physiotherapy also focuses on posture correction, correction of incorrect breathing patterns, and strengthening the breathing muscles. Physiotherapists in the Specialized Center of Pulmonology focus on the condition of the patient; stress tests are performed using a pulse oximeter, providing an indication of load level under a controlled amount of saturation.

Apart from being a healthcare professional…

I’ve always been an active person who enjoys sports, which is why I do physical activities in my free time. My favorite activities are mountain biking, running, and competing in triathlons. Because of my love for sports and my job, I’ve organized an annual charity running competition, fyzioRUN, the 5th of which will be held in 2016. Another one of my hobbies is travelling, whether abroad or in the Czech Republic, which has wonderful countryside full of forests and mountains. In other countries, I enjoy getting acquainted with their culture, people, scenery, and gastronomy. I also enjoy photography because it helps me to keep the memories of the beautiful and interesting things I encounter.

My motto…

Life is movement.

Photo Jan Šibík

Mgr. Lenka Petrášková

Cardiovascular Surgery Physiotherapist


My work requires everyday contact with people, and every single one of them is different. It forces me to find new communication channels and paths to create a bond between my patients and me. Only then can the therapy be successful. It constantly challenges me to find the best methods, and that is what makes my job amazing. Physiotherapists spend a lot of time with their patients and see them regularly, which allow us to witness their individual progress.

Why did I become a healthcare professional?

During high school I was interested in everything concerning the human body and its functionality. What I liked, as well, was helping people, making them happy, and being there for them. Working in healthcare connects all these things together. However, I did not want to become a doctor or nurse, as pharmacy and physiotherapy attracted me more. I personally had the opportunity to experience how important rehabilitation can be as part of convalescence. After that time, becoming a physiotherapist was my goal.

It is always good to familiarize yourself with the profession you are considering, even if just slightly. It allows you to make a more cognizant decision about what you do and do not want to do with your life. I daresay that rehabilitation work in University Hospital in Motol will allow you to learn enough to make that final decision about your profession.

What do you love the most about your specialty?

There are many different paths in physiotherapy, and any one of them could be the right one, but you have to search for it and try it. I love that, in order to find the correct direction, you need to educate yourself for your entire life, and not only from professional courses. With every patient, you can learn something new. What I love the most are directing therapy correctly, alleviating patients’ difficulties and allowing them to get closer to recovery. These accomplishments bring me tremendous encouragement and happiness.

What can a student see by shadowing your team?

You will be able to observe the entire work process of a physiotherapist providing treatment after cardiac surgery (usually after a bypass or valve replacement). We begin rehabilitation with these patients on the first day after their surgery, if their health conditions allow. Patients might be analgosedated or on mechanical ventilator support (artificial lung ventilation). Such patients have to be rehabilitated passively. Patients who are conscious and able to cooperate take an active part in their rehabilitation, depending on their conditions and strength. They begin with respiratory physiotherapy and light fitness exercise in bed, but later the difficulty and intensity is progressively increased. We work to give the patient the ability to sit, move into a chair, and, finally, walk again. The goal of the rehabilitation is to enable the patient to walk without assistance and be self-sufficient in basic, everyday tasks. If they are able to do that, they are sent to home treatment or to a spa, where rehabilitation continues. Cardiac surgeries are often very challenging and they have a high chance of inducing complications (stroke, paresis, sepsis etc.). If any of complications occur, physiotherapists try to solve them, or at least reduce the damage they cause. Patients with a variety of different health complications come to the outpatient physiotherapy and electrotherapy sections. A few of the most common health conditions we see are vertebrogenic disorders, post-operative conditions, trauma and chronic neurologic diseases.

Apart from being a healthcare professional...

I like to spend my free time travelling in nature or hiking. I relax by doing sports, like jogging, port de bras, in-line skating, cross-country skiing, and swimming. I also like discovering foreign cities and countries.

My motto…

I don´t have one smile

Photo Jan Šibík

Ing. Bc. Kristýna Trávníčková

Head of the Section


At the time when I was deciding on my profession, I found physiotherapy interesting in terms of the breadth of its application. During my studies, I started to appreciate that it would allow me to be independent, make me qualified to make decisions, and let me create and apply specific treatments to my patients. When I spent half a year in the Faculty of Physiotherapy at Universidade de Vigo and experienced physiotherapy outside of the Czech Republic, I knew that I had made the right choice.

Why did I become a healthcare professional?

In high school, I was already interested in subjects pertaining to the natural sciences. I enjoyed studying the anatomy of living creatures, their physiological behavior and processes, as well as human biology and genetics. Before the end of high school, I already knew that I wanted to study at the medical faculty. I applied not only because of the countless recommendations from my family members who work in health care but mainly because I love the idea of working and communicating with people.

I think that our clinic is a state-of-the-art workplace that runs smoothly in cooperation with other multidisciplinary specialized centers. Work with us and experience a wide variety of rehabilitation approaches for patients with acute and chronic difficulties. You will see the purpose of physiotherapy and how our normal working day looks, with all the trimmings. What´s more, my small team creates a cheerful and friendly environment. :-)

What do I love the most about my specialty?

In terms of the work of a physiotherapist, I like the process of therapy, which involves working with not only the musculoskeletal system of humans but also their psyche and motivation. When I work with hospitalized patients, I can directly watch their progress and achievements in therapy. In our clinic, I enjoy a certain degree of independent decision-making and responsibility while working on a multidisciplinary health care team. A big motivation for me is the positive feedback from patients. Furthermore, I enjoy working with physiotherapy students and trainees, who are often a particular source of inspiration because their questions and experiences allow me to reflect on my own experiences.

What can you see by shadowing our team?

During your placement, you will see normal day-to-day operations within a unit with closely cooperating physiotherapists. You will learn the rehabilitation procedures not only for outpatients but also for patients with acute respiratory and circulatory problems. The latter have various basic primary diagnoses pertaining to orthopedics, surgery, neurosurgery, and others and are hospitalized in the ENT or ARU clinics. In the ENT department, you will mainly witness rehabilitation approaches for patients with postoperative facial nerve impairment and impaired vestibular function (vestibular habituation training). During the winter school semester, part of my work includes weekly practical training of physiotherapy students from the second Medical Faculty of the Charles University. At least once a week, I am responsible for the group exercise for people suffering from Parkinson's disease and exercise for patients with chronic back pain.

Apart from being a healthcare professional…

I like sports in general, both actively and passively. I like jogging and sports group exercises. I also enjoy playing badminton or squash with my partner. In the winter, I like skiing and skating. I also like going to the cinema and cafés with my friends. My other hobbies are taking trips and walking in nature.

My motto…

I have no specific motto. I like nice, honest people who do not take themselves too seriously.