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Turn Your Sports Rehabilitation Degree into a Physiotherapy Master's

If you’re a third-year sports rehabilitation student considering your next move, a master’s in physiotherapy could be a fantastic investment in your career. A physiotherapy master’s degree can open many doors, giving you a competitive edge when it comes to applying for jobs.

Here are some of the reasons to stay on at the University of Bolton to study our MSc Physiotherapy (Pre-registration) course.

Develop your medical knowledge

One of the best reasons to turn your sports rehabilitation degree into a physiotherapy qualification is to improve your medical knowledge. While sports rehabilitation is focused on musculoskeletal disorders, physiotherapists need to have extensive knowledge of the following:

·         Neurological diseases (such as stroke, Parkinson’s disease and multiple sclerosis)

·         Neuro-musculoskeletal conditions (such as back pain, sports-related injuries, arthritis, or things like whiplash associated disorder)

·         Cardiovascular problems (including chronic heart disease or recovery after heart attacks)

·         Respiratory disorders (such as asthma, cystic fibrosis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)

By developing an advanced understanding of medicine, you can open up more opportunities to work within healthcare, not just in a sports setting.

Physiotherapy in practice

Improve your chances of working in sports

At the same time, a physiotherapy master’s degree can also be a great way to boost your eligibility for sports rehabilitation and sports physiotherapy roles. Careers in sports can be hard to come by and the recruitment space is incredibly competitive.

While many first degree holders are able to find a job in sports or go on to train, a master’s in physiotherapy can help you specialise and gain a competitive edge during recruitment rounds.

Not only does a master’s degree tell employers that you’re an expert at what you do, but it shows them that you’re dedicated and passionate about your work. It also broadens your skills, which is ideal for working with a diverse team displaying a wide range of medical problems. Physiotherapists are in demand, and professional sports clubs are willing to offer high salaries to qualified and experienced individuals who can improve the health and performance of their teams.

Gain real hands-on experience

A master’s degree is the perfect stepping stone into employment. You’ll get more time for personal development, while also getting workplace experience under the safe guidance of your course leaders and mentors.

The University of Bolton’s MSc Physiotherapy (Pre-registration) course offers practice-based learning, with a total of 1,000 hours spent in physiotherapy learning environments across the primary care, private and voluntary sectors.

Not only will these placements help you turn your theoretical understanding into hands-on, real-life practice, but the diverse settings you will encounter will prepare you for the changing environments during your career.

During your work placements, you will also get a chance to practice other essential workplace skills, including leadership, teamwork and professional communication. In order to become a successful physiotherapist or sports therapist, it’s important to have excellent soft skills as you will be people-facing throughout your working day.

In addition to working closely with patients or clients, you will also be expected to work with multi-disciplinary teams to create the best possible care plan. In a clinical setting, this could be doctors, nurses and other medical staff. In a sports setting, this could be trainers, coaches, team managers, medical teams and even sports psychologists.

Work for the NHS or private clinics

The MSc Physiotherapy (Pre-registration) degree is approved by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and is also accredited by the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP). Upon completion of the course, graduates will be eligible to apply to the HCPC for registration to practice as a physiotherapist in the UK.

After joining the HCPC register, you will be allowed to use ‘Physiotherapist’ or ‘Physical Therapist’ as your title, and you will be able to seek employment with the NHS or private clinics. This means you’ll be able to work in a number of clinical settings, including hospitals, community and health centres, nursing homes, day centres, surgeries and schools.

During your time in healthcare, you may also get the opportunity to specialise in an area that you’re passionate about. For instance, some physiotherapists choose to focus on paediatrics, women’s health, or sports medicine. Or you could explore medical specialisms such as musculoskeletal, neurological or respiratory disorders.

Boost job prospects and opportunities

The NHS is just one of the routes you can pursue with a master’s in physiotherapy. Compared to a sports rehabilitation degree, a physiotherapy master’s is more diverse.

Both types of therapists assess and diagnose injuries, create personalised treatment plans, help patients and clients manage pain, and implement rehabilitation programmes to help people stay fit and well. But physiotherapy has more of a long-term focus, and practitioners have a broader knowledge base and a specialist medical background.  

Sports rehabilitation focuses on musculoskeletal rehabilitation and helping people get back to their chosen sport, while physiotherapists look at the wider health of individuals and aim to rehabilitate patients for day-to-day life, not just sports performance.

This means your physiotherapy master’s degree will open more doors, giving you the option to work in sports, or within clinical roles. Alternatively, you can find employment in other areas, such as the Ministry of Defence, in higher education, in a research role, or for national health-related charities.

Physiotherapy in practice

Improve quality of life for others

While sports therapy looks at whether a client can maintain the required physical level for sporting activities, physiotherapy considers the wider health of service users.

The main goal of a physical therapist is to help people cope with pain, chronic illnesses or recovery, ensuring they are able to improve their quality of life, whether on a short or long-term basis. You will also be working closely with patients and clients, giving you a real sense of satisfaction at the end of each working day.

Physical therapists have a huge positive impact on the lives of others. It is both a challenging and rewarding career, as you will be expected to problem-solve on a daily basis in order to help others manage their pain and suffering.

If you’re looking for a meaningful career path, a career in physiotherapy could be for you!

Are you interested in staying at university to do a master’s in physiotherapy? As a leading Greater Manchester university that puts students and their needs first, there’s nowhere better to continue your education and personal development than the University of Bolton!

We’re proud to deliver #UniAsItShouldBe, and we have a vibrant, friendly and supportive postgraduate community. To find out more about applying in 2022/23, see our course details.

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