Physiotherapy is prevalent in a number of professions, most notably in sports and athletics, but also in the performing arts, for example, dance and ballet. Some physiotherapists are employed full time by sports associations and dance companies - basically in any profession where people are active, they are going to end up hurting themselves or need maintenance to keep up the very high levels of performance required of them. So in this field physiotherapists are key to keeping people operating at these very high levels.
Another area is orthapeadics, like when people go into hospital for a surgical procedure (like a total hip or knee replacement) they will always need physiotherapy to help them to recover afterwards. Another area is musculo skeletal, so after any kind of surgery that leaves people with motor difficulties, difficulty in walking and getting around generally then physio is always needed to help them recover and go home.
Another area of physiotherapy is neurological which is basically getting people going again after they have had an injury or disorder related to the brain, it could be like a stroke or head injury which will have disrupted signals to the body from the brain or degenerative diseases like Parkinson’s or a stroke. This again involves retraining the patient to be able to walk and perform everyday functions again after illness or injury. After say, a stroke, the physiotherapist is extremely important in helping that person to recover their ability to get moving again and this is the deciding factor a lot of the time as to whether that person will be able to go home or remain in care.
Cardio respiratory is yet another field where physio plays an important part -virtually every ward in a hospital has a physiotherapist attached to it, a large reason for that is that physio is not just about muscles and bones it encompasses most systems of the body including the cardio respiratory systems including helping people to get breathing again like in the treatment of things like pneumonia with physical techniques breathing exercises and so on.
Post surgery patients often have difficulty with their breathing or mobility and so physiotherapists are needed to look after these patients and help them by using exercise clearing their chests listening to their chest advising doctors if people are not responding well to treatment, so they can be referred back for further examination and treatment.
Physiotherapy spans all the way from paediatrics to geriatrics, men’s and women's health issues, diseases, injuries and also developmental problems such as very early birth weight problems and developmental disorders such as when the baby is not developing as per normal or children with cerebral palsy. These are also areas where physiotherapists play an important role in establishing why children are not walking properly so they are there to assist parents and the children to get them going again.
Geriatrics is another area, not only stroke victims but with so many more people reaching older ages than previously recorded there are many more instances of debilitation where exercises can help enormously in maintaining a good standard of life and mobility and also in preventing falls.