There are many types of therapist out there, all calling themselves something different, having completed different training and offering different treatments and services. How do you know which one to visit to meet your requirements? Or maybe you are thinking of training to work in the sports injury field and are not sure which profession to choose?
Athletic therapy is a Canadian profession, governed by the Canadian Athletic Therapist Association (CATA). Certified members have successfully completed a comprehensive theory exam and a subsequent oral/practical exam developed and administered by the certification board of the CATA.
Chiropractic treatment focuses particularly on the spine and musculoskeletal system. Chiropractors manipulate vertebrae and the bones and joints around the spine, with the aim of reducing pain and increasing mobility. They may also use other techniques like acupuncture and give advice on exercises that can help ease pain and improve the health of the spine.
Occupational therapists work in both the UK and the USA. Their role is to assist their patients in activities of daily living, helping them overcome disabilities such as injuries and medical conditions.
According to the General Osteopathic Council "Osteopathy is a way of detecting and treating damaged parts of the body such as muscles, ligaments, nerves and joints. When the body is balanced and efficient, just like a well tuned engine, it will function with the minimum of wear and tear, leaving more energy for living."
Physical therapists work in the USA and are the American equivalent of a Physiotherapist. They help restore function, improve mobility, relieve pain, and prevent or limit permanent physical disabilities of patients suffering from injuries or disease. They treat a wide range of patients from athletes to people who have suffered from an accident or illness.
A Physiotherapist is a therapist who helps patients recover from injury and illness. Physiotherapy is a profession which is very popular in the UK, Europe and Australia.
A Podiatrist diagnoses and treats abnormalities of the lower limb. They give professional advice on the prevention of foot problems and on proper care of the foot.
There is both much confusion over what a Sports Masseur is and what one does or can offer. This is due to the fact that there are so many people practicing ‘massage' and so many practitioners with different skills and levels of experience. A Sports massage is ideal to treat injuries and as well as a preventative treatment dealing with the health of muscle and connective tissue, range of movement, tone, symmetry, balance of muscle and quality of posture.
A Sports Rehabilitator is an individual who has graduated from a degree-level Sport Rehabilitation course. These are run over 3 or 4 years at the end of which the graduate is entitled to use the initials GSR as well as the standard BSc (or BA) awarded for every degree.
Sports Therapists treat not only 'injured athletes', but also deal with many common muscular complaints such as back pain, mobility problems, postural problems and work related conditions.