Medical

Sports physiotherapist

Sports physiotherapists diagnose and treat sports injuries.

Annual Salary

£23,000 to £45,000

Average UK salary in 2018 was £29,588 (source Office for Statistics)

Working hours

37.5 to 40

5%
Future employment

There will be 5% more Sports physiotherapist jobs in 2024.
In your local area

What's it all about?

You’ll work with top professional sports people, amateurs or people who do sports as a leisure activity. You could specialise in a particular sport, or in a particular aspect of physiotherapy, like rehabilitation.

Your day-to-day duties could include:

  • examining and diagnosing injuries
  • planning treatment programmes
  • using methods like manipulation, massage and electrotherapy
  • giving advice on how to avoid sports injuries
  • keeping records of patient's treatment and progress
  • giving accurate timescales for when players may be able to play again

University

You can do a degree in physiotherapy approved by the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy.

You may be able to do a fast-track postgraduate course if you've got a first or upper second class honours degree in a relevant subject like:

  • biological science
  • psychology
  • sports science

Competition for places on courses is strong. It will help if you have relevant healthcare experience before applying, for example as a physiotherapy assistant.

You'll usually need:

  • 2 to 3 A levels for a degree
  • a degree in any subject for a postgraduate course

Apprenticeship

You can get into this job through a physiotherapist degree apprenticeship.

You'll usually need:

  • 2 to 3 A levels, preferably including biology, for a degree apprenticeship

Other Routes

You could start as a physiotherapy assistant and do a part-time degree while you work, to qualify.

You'll find it useful to get some paid or voluntary experience in a healthcare setting or personal care role.

Private physiotherapy clinics, nursing homes and sports clinics may also offer work placements.

You'll need to register with the Health and Care Professions Council

Experience of working with a local amateur sports team or club will be helpful.

You can join the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy for professional development and networking opportunities.

£23,000 to £45,000

Starter salary: £23,000 (private sector) to Ê£26,000 (public sector)

Experienced salary: £30,000 (private sector) to £32,000 (public sector)

Sports physiotherapists working with high profile athletes can earn much more.

These figures are a guide.

37.5 to 40

You’ll usually work evenings and weekends as you’ll need to be at training sessions and competitions in the UK or abroad. You’ll often need to spend time away from home.

When on tour with a team, you may work up to 16 hours a day.

With experience, you could teach physiotherapy to university students, or set up your own sports physiotherapy clinic.

You can find out more about working in sports physiotherapy from the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy and Physios in Sport.

Skills required and how your skills match up

What skills are required?

You’ll need:

  • excellent communication skills
  • experience in the treatment and management of sports injuries
  • the ability to educate, advise and motivate people
  • good organisational and administration skills
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