How to become a physiotherapist? The educational path of a physiotherapist may seem unclear to many people due to significant legal changes and turbulences related to these changes that have taken place in recent years. In today’s text, we will specify what exactly such a specialist does, we will follow what criteria must be met to become one and answer the question “are the courses for physiotherapists enough to practice the profession?”
What does a physiotherapist do?
Physiotherapy is a branch of medicine that combines medical knowledge with manual skills and technical means. In addition to reliable medical knowledge, therefore, touch is used, but also devices operating on the basis of electricity, water, light and magnetic field. You can refer to a physiotherapist with various problems. Most often we get there when we need:
- rehabilitation after an injury;
- reduce the pain you feel;
- reduce swelling or inflammation;
- reducing stress levels;
- diagnose ailments.
The range of services that are offered as part of physiotherapy is very wide. It is enough to visit the website of one of the institutions to see how many treatments are related to this field of medicine. A physiotherapy specialist can deal with physical, medical, gerontological and psychometric rehabilitation, as well as manual and occupational therapy, lymphatic massage, relaxation massage and many others. Within each of these branches of activity, various treatments are proposed.
During the meeting with the patient, the physiotherapist conducts a thorough interview and then assesses the health of the person (using functional tests). The specialist also selects the appropriate physiotherapeutic treatments or medical devices, and controls the patient’s health condition during their use. He is also obliged to keep medical records and issue an opinion on how physiotherapy is carried out.
How to become a physiotherapist?
First of all, it is worth realizing that the work of a physiotherapist is mainly contact with people. A person who would like to develop in this area must therefore be patient, gentle and understanding. But empathy and a positive attitude towards people are not enough; you must also have the required qualifications. Currently, this profession is regulated by law. To become a physiotherapist, you must have full legal capacity, be in good health, have appropriate education and know the language sufficiently to enable you to practice.
Are the courses for physiotherapists sufficient to be able to work in the profession?
The answer is no. The restrictions related to the education that a physiotherapist should undergo are precisely specified by legal provisions. People who started / will start their education after October 2017 must complete a 5-year university degree, complete a six-month internship and pass the State Physiotherapy Examination. People who started their studies between September 2012 and October 2017 can confirm their qualifications only with a bachelor’s degree.
However, one can still meet the belief that physiotherapy can be learned in courses for physiotherapists and that it is fully enough to perform this profession. As you can see, this is obviously a wrong assumption. This professional path requires extensive medical knowledge, because the profession is burdened with responsibility – a specialist diagnoses, qualifies for treatments, selects appropriate methods and issues decisions regarding the health of patients. Does this mean that courses for physiotherapists are unnecessary? Absolutely not.
The profession requires regular training and updating of one’s knowledge at courses for physiotherapists . During several days or longer meetings, specialists have the opportunity to learn about news from the medical world, as well as to increase their existing competences. Such events are often addressed also to other groups, e.g. manual therapists, physiotherapists, doctors and osteopaths. They allow you to meet the best specialists in specific fields and learn directly from them. Courses for physiotherapists are a form of training, but not the main way of gaining knowledge used at work.
What else is worth knowing?
If the prospect of continuous learning, carrying out courses for physiotherapists, and constantly expanding your qualifications does not frighten us, it is worth getting acquainted with possible paths of education. Here, the choice is huge and students can choose from such specializations as physiotherapy in sport , in spa medicine, functional tests, health promotion, hippotherapy and much more. When it comes to the labor market, physiotherapists should not have a problem with employment. According to the estimates of the Ministry of Health, as early as 2026 it can be expected that there will be significant shortages in the labor market. It can therefore be expected that such specialists will have their hands full, and this results, among others, from the aging of the population and the growing public awareness of the benefits of this type of therapy.