As a physiotherapist, you will help treat people with physical problems caused by illness, injury, disability or ageing. As well as treating people, you will promote good health and advise people on how to avoid injury.

You will treat many types of conditions, such as:

  • neurological (stroke, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's)
  • neuromusculoskeletal (back pain, whiplash associated disorder, sports injuries, arthritis)
  • cardiovascular (chronic heart disease, rehabilitation after heart attack)
  • respiratory (asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cystic fibrosis)


Once a client’s movement problem has been diagnosed they will be referred to you to work with the patient to decide how to treat the condition. This could include:

  • manual therapy (such as massage)
  • therapeutic exercise
  • electrotherapy (such as ultrasound, heat or cold)


As a physiotherapist,you may work in hospitals where you will be needed in nearly every department. In intensive care, for example, you're needed for round-the-clock chest physiotherapy to keep unconscious patients breathing.

You may also work in:

  • outpatients' departments
  • women’s health
  • elderly care
  • stroke services
  • orthopaedics
  • mental health and learning disability services
  • occupational health
  • paediatrics


More physiotherapy is also being delivered in

  • health centres
  • nursing homes
  • day centres
  • private hospitals and clinics
  • sports clubs and gyms
  • private practices