Physiotherapists help people recover from illness or injury using exercise and other techniques. 

"A highlight was walking a Covid-19 survivor off the ward, to a guard of honour. He had spent over ten weeks in hospital and could now return home to his family."

Read David's story

Working life

You'll help and treat people with physical problems caused by illness, injury, disability or ageing. You'll see human movement as central to the health and wellbeing of individuals so they aim to identify and maximise movement. As well as treating people, you'll promote good health and advise people on how to avoid injury.

You'll treat many types of conditions, such as:

Once they have diagnosed the client’s movement problem, you'll then work with the patient to  decide how to treat it. This could include:

In the NHS, you may work in hospitals where you're 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:

More physiotherapy is also being delivered in the local community so you could be based in health centres and  treat patients in their own homes, nursing homes, day centres or schools.

You could also work outside the NHS, for example in:

Wherever you work, you can choose from a range of equipment to use with patients such as gyms, hydrotherapy and high-tech equipment for specialist therapy.

You may work alone or in a team alongside health and/or social care professionals. Depending on where you work, this could include occupational therapists, GPs, health visitors, district nurses and social workers. You may supervise the work of support workers such as physiotherapy assistants.          

Outside the NHS, you could work with sports coaches or personal trainers.

Want to learn more?

Other roles that may interest you

Make a comment or report a problem with this page

Help us improve Health Careers