Working as a Physiotherapist
A brief guide to a long-term career
How do I qualify as a Physiotherapist?
You'll need to study for a Degree. This normally takes three years and covers subjects such as anatomy and human behaviour. There’s a strong practical training element, including placements.
The University of Liverpool Physiotherapy undergraduate programme qualifies you for registration with the Health and Care Professions Council and the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy . This entitles you to practise.
What do Physiotherapists do?
Physiotherapists are highly trained professionals who treat people with physical problems typically caused by accidents, sport- or work-related injury, illness or ageing.
They work in hospitals, clinics, schools, residential homes, GP practices, sports organisations and industry.
What sort of treatments do they provide?
Physiotherapists work with other medical professionals and with patients to assess physical problems and work out personalised treatment plans.
Plans might include special exercises, electrotherapy, massage, manipulation and / or health education or advice.
These treatments often make an enormous difference to a patient's mobility and quality of life, so it's a highly satisfying job.
Can I specialise in different areas?
Newly qualified Physiotherapists work as generalists but there are opportunities to specialise later on. This is normally in musculo-skeletal, neurological or respiratory Physiotherapy.
You might then opt to specialise further, maybe in a certain condition or area of the body. An example might be as a neurological clinical specialist in multiple sclerosis.
Is there a promotion structure?
There are set grades within the NHS and private hospitals, so with experience, merit and further study you can gain promotions to clinical and / or leadership positions.
Your qualification will be recognised in many other countries around the world, so if you'd like to experience working and living abroad, your degree could be the perfect passport.
Education and research are further options and in many cases you can combine this with working as a Physiotherapist.
How can I find out more?
Check our undergraduate study page for further details of the course.
It would be a good idea to contact your local Physiotherapy service, to see if you can visit and arrange some work experience.