Physiotherapists analyse human movement and identify what aspects are working well, and what aspects are not. They are experts in the structure and function of the human body. Physiotherapists who work specifically with a sporting population are known as Sports and Exercise Physiotherapists. Often, these professionals have done postgraduate study in the field of sporting injuries and rehabilitation, and they have a greater appreciation for the demands and time pressures of sports.
Sports and Exercise Physiotherapists often have a specific one or two sports they have a special interest in. In doing so, they are able to have a detailed understanding of the nuances of the particular sport, and therefore can better understand your injury and rehabilitation journey. They have usually either played that sport themselves in the past, or have studied and analysed the specific demands and movements of that sport in great detail. This experience provides them with an additional skill set to better assess your problem, and rehabilitate you from start to finish.
Some athletes seek the advice of a sports and exercise physiotherapist to assist them in becoming better in their sport. You do not have to have an injury to see a physiotherapist. In fact, physiotherapists are highly trained in providing specific exercise and training programmes to assist performance. This might include increasing the pace at which you run, or improving your accuracy in throwing, or increasing explosive power when you kick. Not only can a physiotherapist work with you to improve your skills, but they can implement strategies to prevent and reduce the risk of injury. This is particularly important when athletes are training at a professional level, however it is just as important in amateur athletes as well.
Sports and exercise physiotherapists are often found exclusively working with a sporting team or a sporting institution. This gives them the opportunity to observe the athletes in their training sessions. This can allow the physiotherapists to analyse their movements and provide recommendations to rehabilitate or reduce the risk of an injury. The physiotherapist will communicate closely with the coaches and other training and medical staff. Often a team approach is required to allow an athlete to have as little time off playing and training as possible, while ensuring that they are not putting themselves at any additional risk of their injury worsening. Even if the physiotherapist does not work with your team directly and you are seeking advice from them in a private setting, they will make every effort to communicate with your coach where possible to ensure the best possible scenario for you (the athlete), the team and your health and well being. It is always a team effort!
While some Sports and Exercise Physiotherapists work exclusively with sporting teams, many of them work in a private practice setting so that athletes of any age, level and experience can access their services. Life Ready Physio has many physiotherapists who have additional knowledge and experience in assessing and treating sporting injuries – find your nearest one today!