What is a Graduate Sports Therapist?
One of the questions I get asked the most is, what is the difference between a Sports Therapist, a Physiotherapist, Sports Rehabilitator or Sports Massage Therapist?
Each of the aforementioned occupations play an important role in the prevention and rehabilitation of injuries and maintaining physical wellbeing, however their roles do differ slightly; as a Graduate Sports Therapist, my primary focus is on the prevention, treatment and rehabilitation of injuries in both sporting and clinical environments to ensure that the patient is able to reach their optimum level of functional, occupational and sport specific fitness, regardless of their age and ability.
How do you become a Graduate Sports Therapist?
Graduate Sports Therapists are required to undertake a Bachelors Degree (BSc) in Sports Therapy from University. In order to graduate from University and achieve the title of Graduate Sports Therapist, I personally had to achieve over 40 individual competencies in line with the standards of proficiency, these can be categorised into the following as defined by the Society of Sports Therapists (SST):
Prevention of Injury
Recognition and Evaluation
Management, Treatment of Injury and Referral (both acute and chronic)
Educational and Professional Issues
The above competencies were required to be demonstrated in both a clinical environment and a sporting environment, including pitch side.
In addition to the above, I also completed the following modules during my degree:
Functional Anatomy and Biomechanics
Anatomy and Physiology
Examination and Assessment
Soft Tissue Techniques
Specialised Issues in Sport
Does a Graduate Sports Therapist only see athletes?
No. A Graduate Sports Therapist is able to see patients of all ages and fitness abilities, injuries and conditions can occur from participating in regular day-to-day activities. The assessment, treatment and rehabilitation of such injuries is important when returning back to functional and occupational activities.
The treatments that we offer are beneficial to everyone, whether you have some muscular tension from sitting at a desk all day or whether you have had sustained a serious injury from playing within a high level of sport or even if you have a medical condition that causes musculoskeletal issues. Treatment plans and programmes are bespoke to you and your ability and lifestyle.