Main Content:

Research Interests:

  • Research interests include optimizing outcomes in the treatment of rotator cuff tears and chronic shoulder pathology, methods to improve delivery of physical therapy interventions, and issues surrounding return to sports and recreation after musculoskeletal pathology.

Ongoing Projects:

  • Predicting the Outcome of Exercise therapy for Treatment of Rotator Cuff Tears
  • Kinematic, Clinical, and Patient-Reported Outcomes Associated with Superior Capsule Reconstruction in the Presence of Irreparable Rotator Cuff Tears
  • In-Home Movement Therapy


Adam Popchak is a research associate professor in the Department of Physical Therapy. Popchak currently serves as a manuscript reviewer for multiple peer-reviewed journals, is a member of the American Physical Therapy Association, Orthopaedic section, and is a faculty mentor for undergraduate Rehabilitation Science students and graduate students in Physical Therapy. His research interests include orthopaedic injury prevention and rehabilitation with emphasis on disorders of the shoulder in youth and adult populations and the use of patient-reported outcomes in clinical care. Relevant publications have been related to rotator cuff and biceps tendon characteristics in overhead throwing and in response to rehabilitation. Popchak currently serves as an instructor in the DPT and MS curriculums in courses related to musculoskeletal physical therapy of the 1) lower extremity, 2) upper extremity, and 3) biomechanics. Popchak remains a practicing physical therapist at the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex and works closely with the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery in both research and clinical care. 


Department of Physical Therapy


Doctor of Physical Therapy Residential and Hybrid Program
Doctor of Physical Therapy/Doctor of Philosophy in Bioengineering
Post Professional Program in Physical Therapy

Representative Publications