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How To Become a Sports Physiotherapist: A Complete Guide

Amie Parnaby
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how to become a sports Physiotherapist by Dr Roshan Jha

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Sports physiotherapy is a crucial component of sports since it has long been common for athletes to experience ligament and bone injuries. Do you want to work as a sports physiotherapist with the world’s top athletes and teams? Learn how to become a sports physiotherapist by reading this article.

Sports Physiotherapy: A rising business sector

Sports physiotherapy has grown in popularity as more sports emerge on a regular basis than just football, basketball, hockey, and cricket. The growing trend of fitness- and athletics-focused lifestyles has increased the demand for physiotherapists, and experts say sports physiotherapists can be vitally important worldwide.

To assist their athletes, almost every sports organization or team has a relationship with a group of physiotherapists or a single physiotherapy consultant. The sporting industries in North America, Europe, and Asia have the greatest need for sports physiotherapists due to the rise in sports-related injuries and the necessity to help athletes improve their long-term endurance. 

The industry is diversifying due to technological advancements and high-tech rehabilitation post injuries. Every major sports club wants to take advantage of the growing demand for sports therapy rehabilitation solutions, evidenced by the low treatment costs. Rising general awareness of the benefits of physical therapy (that has no adverse consequences) is another reason for the industry’s expansion. 

As per data published by Data Bridge Market Research, the entire physical therapy market, including sports physiotherapy, which was USD 23.1 billion in 2021, would rocket up to USD 37.24 billion by 2029 and is expected to undergo a CAGR of 6.15% during the forecast period 2022 to 2029.

Would you like to take advantage of this lucrative employment opportunity? Discover how to become a sports physiotherapist below to launch a successful career in the sporting industry.

How to become a sports physiotherapist?

After completing high school or college with expertise in physics, chemistry, and biology, you should attend college or university. There you will obtain a qualification in physical therapy, earning a diploma, bachelor’s degree in physical therapy, or B.Sc. (Physiotherapy). These study courses usually last three or four years, depending on the college or university. Some countries, like Australia, Canada, and the US, offer 3-year courses in sports physiotherapy. This can provide students with the chance to work with top national teams.

A degree or diploma may not be enough if you wish to work as a registered sports physiotherapist. You must undergo an accredited physiotherapy curriculum to work directly with top teams and clubs as a qualified sports physiotherapist. To advance your career in sports physiotherapy, read the following.

  1. You can apply to do a sports physiotherapy residency once you have earned your physiotherapy diploma. You will have the chance to work with sportspeople and gain greater knowledge about sports physiotherapy as a result.
  2. After completing your residency in sports physiotherapy, you can earn your certification through one of the many common physiotherapy associations in developed nations like the US, Australia, Germany, Canada, the UK, etc.

What are the responsibilities of a sports physiotherapist?

Sports physiotherapy in action

The working hours of sports physiotherapists vary, and you may also have to work on weekends and evenings. As a sports physio, you may have to put in a lot of effort while on a team tour and sometimes work more than the usual 8-10 hours. The work can be difficult at times, particularly when the squad has a big game to participate in. Additionally, you may have to participate in numerous training services that require substantial travel. The critical responsibilities of a sports physiotherapist are as follows –

  1. You must be skilled enough to quickly examine, identify, and provide treatment for player injuries.
  2. You must treat injuries either on the ground or in a hospital in addition to determining the nature of an injury.
  3. You must be qualified to establish a treatment plan for every player on your team or in your club.
  4. You must work to establish mutually acceptable timelines for the athlete’s return to action after an injury.
  5. Additionally, you should maintain thorough records of their care and development and create a budget to cover all costs related to the players’ health and fitness.


Should I enroll in an apprentice program along with a sports physiotherapy diploma or degree?

If you don’t have solid finances and want to get a job and finish your sports physiotherapy degree, an apprentice program is a suitable option. The apprenticeship degree typically takes 1 to 5 years, based on your entry level.

What skills are necessary for a sports physiotherapist?

Sports physiotherapists employ manual therapy, therapeutic exercise, and the use of medicine as their main techniques. Some may additionally pursue acupuncture, hydrotherapy, heat treatment or reflexology to provide sufferers or players with specific benefits. Depending on the injury of a sportsman, the type of therapy may also require using specialized medical apparatus. Finally, you have to showcase exceptional team spirit and determination to excel in your career. 

How much can I earn as a sports physiotherapist?

You can easily anticipate a 6-figure annual pay in the US or UK if you work for a well-known team that competes on the international stage. The average pay for a sports physiotherapist can exceed $70,000, according to Salary.com. Additionally, bonuses, profit-sharing, and sponsorships from sports retailers and brands are all possible.

What are the career prospects for sports physiotherapists?

You can work as a sports physiotherapist in a university or college and directly instruct students and prospective athletes on staying healthy and preventing injuries. Additionally, you can join a variety of international sports teams, clubs, or associations to support their players. Opening your own physical therapy clinic and using an online booking system to cater to local sportsmen/women is also feasible.

Do I also need soft skills to excel in the sports physiotherapy sector?

Yes, soft skills such as character, philosophy, and interpersonal communication are crucial if you’re working with people from different ethnic backgrounds and cultural backgrounds in a global team. Soft skills can also be regarded as non-technical capabilities.

Dr Roshan Jha has worked with the leading hospitals of Delhi, like Batra Hospital and BLK Super Speciality Hospital. Dr Roshan Jha is an innovative, resourceful, and ever-evolving Physiotherapist who takes pride in his offering to his patients. He is one of those rare physiotherapists who take a special interest in orthopaedics, neuro patients, and sports rehabilitation. Visit  https://painfreephysiotherapy.com/  to learn more about his works and treatment guide.

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