19 April, 2021 | Posted by Cian Fahey

What Education do you Need to be a Physical Therapist?

What Education do you Need to be a Physical Therapist

Qualified physical therapists are an essential part of any professional sports team or organization. Elite professional athletes are surrounded by teams of therapists with different specific qualifications who guide them through their different rehabilitation processes after injury.

The most common form of sports therapist is a physical therapist (also known as a physiotherapist).

Physical therapists are essential at the top levels of sports but they are also essential for the wider general public in their day-to-day lives.

You don’t need to play sports at all to suffer an injury that requires treatment from a physical therapist. If you sit at a computer all day for your job, you’ll likely develop back or shoulder issues that could benefit from physical therapy.

In that instance, you will most likely visit a physical therapist working out of their own clinic. Physical therapists also work out of hospitals to serve patients, out of gyms to serve clients and at amateur sports clubs/schools of various kinds to provide continuous support to players.

No matter where they work, every single qualified physical therapist must have the right education to be active practitioners.

The job opportunities for qualified physical therapists are plentiful because the requirement for them is plentiful which has led to more and more routes to becoming a qualified physical therapist.

How to Become a Physical Therapist

In Ireland, there are specific physical therapy degrees that solely focus on training physiotherapists and nothing else. Those courses are typically four-year, Level 8 BSc degrees. At Portobello Institute, we run a three-year BSc (Hons) Sports Therapy degree course that lands as a Level 8 on the National Framework of qualifications.

Our Sports therapy degree is broader than a physiotherapy specific course despite being one year shorter in length. It sets you up to pursue a broader range of therapy qualifications after graduation. Furthermore, not only that, it also allows you to attain a Level 9 masters in Physiotherapy over the same four-year period that it would take to earn a Level 8 BSc in Physiotherapy at other colleges.

If you follow the Portobello route this year, you could graduate with your masters in Physiotherapy by 2025. If you follow another college’s route, you won’t start studying for your masters until 2025.

While offering a broader curriculum in our Sports Therapy degree, we still don’t overwork our students.

Blended Learning allows students to spend a substantial amount of time learning from home. Student feedback has informed us that the scheduling at Portobello is hugely valuable for working part time, spending time with your family or enjoying a social life without being overstretched. Portobello has achieved this perfect balance between a life and an education by cutting out the fat in its modules that other courses use to stretch three-year courses into four-year courses.

Feedback from students who have gone through the Portobello route to Physiotherapy have praised the flexibility of their schedules and the lack of “unnecessary modules.”

Portobello’s more efficient curriculum includes such modules as:

  • Foundations of Sports Therapy (Year 1)
  • Human Physiology and Training Principles (Year 1)
  • Sport Rehabilitation (Year 2)
  • Sports Science Research methods (Year 2)
  • Advanced Sports Therapy Techniques (Year 3)
  • Clinical Exercise Physiology (Year 3)

London Metropolitan University is the awarding body for Portobello’s BSc (Hons) Sports Therapy degree. Having an internationally recognized qualification opens up greater opportunities to study or attain employment in other countries.

Dr. Susan Giblin, Portobello’s Head of Sports, delivers the course outline in conjunction with LMU.

You will benefit from work placement opportunities and the Student Sports Clinic. Each student gets their own personal academic tutor for constant support. Having this one-to-one contact has allowed our students to target specific areas they need to improve on or learn more about to advance through their modules.

If you want to learn how to assess, treat and refer athletes for specialist advice and intervention, this is the course for you. You will learn to provide immediate care of injuries and basic life support in a recreational, training and competitive environment.

From understanding how to develop and implement a long-term unique rehabilitation programme to having the practical techniques required for short-term injury treatment, this course prepares you for everything in the career you are pursuing.

For more information on this degree or the wider sports department, you can contact sports department course advisor Johanna Shaw on 01-892-0024 or send her an email at jo.shaw@portobelloinstitute.com. We also have two virtual open evenings coming up on April 21st. You can sign up here for the PE, Coaching and Sports Psychology event at 6:30pm or the Sports Therapy event at 7:30pm.