Sports Therapy is an aspect of healthcare that is solely focused on the musculoskeletal system. It is an aspect of healthcare that is specifically concerned with the prevention of injury and rehabilitation of the patient back to optimum levels of functional, occupational and sports-specific function, regardless of age and ability.
Sports Therapists treat pain and injury through hands-on treatment and rehabilitation. Sports Therapists undergo a three-year degree course which focuses primarily on the musculoskeletal system and on restoring, maintaining and maximising movement to relieve pain and increase quality of life.
Sports Therapists share many similarities with Physiotherapists, but also some differences.
The main similarities are…
- Both assess and diagnose injuries
- Deliver a personalised treatment plan
- Teach patients how to reduce pain and manage chronic injuries
- Implement rehabilitation programmes
- Teach patients how to stay fit and well
The main differences are…
- Physiotherapists have a broader knowledge base and medical background, which allows them to treat neurological and respiratory issues.
- Sports Therapists generally have more exposure to sporting environments, making them ideal for preventing sports injuries through specific strengthening programmes.
- Physiotherapy attempts to rehabilitate patients to allow them to feel comfortable and cope in their day-to-day life. Sports Therapy aims to rehabilitate to normal day-to-day life and then aim to get them back to physical activity where applicable.
- Sports Therapists specialise in the Musculoskeletal system, whereas Physiotherapy is broader.
What do Sports Therapists treat?
- Back, neck and shoulder pain (including sciatica)
- Muscle, ligament and tendon injuries
- Sprains and strains
- Achilles tendonitis
- Frozen shoulder
- Tennis elbow and golfer’s elbow
- Knee pain
- Plantar fasciitis
- Post/pre-surgery rehabilitation
- Runner’s knee
- Shin splints/Medial Tibial Border Syndrome (MTBS)
- And a whole host more!
Sports Therapy is an unregulated profession meaning the ‘Sports Therapist’ title is not protected and therefore it is worth looking for a therapist that is a member of an association, the main association being the Society of Sports Therapists (SST). You can check if a Sports Therapist is registered on the SST’s website. Lauren, our Sports Therapist, is registered to the SST.