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⭐️ A Rising Star...

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My journey to becoming a Sports Therapist

About me

 

My name is Grace, I am 21 years old, currently studying at Coventry University in my second year doing Sports and Exercise Therapy. My career path wasn’t always in the direction of sports therapy however, I’ve always had a keen interest in sport and wanting to help people.

 

My background in sport

 

From a very young age I have played football and competed at county level when I was 15. My love for any form of physical activity grew and I loved getting involved with volunteering within sports from being in the sports council at high school to refereeing games. More recently, when I was 17, I was diagnosed with a heart condition that set my aspirations of playing higher level football aside. At this point in time, I knew I wanted to still be part of a team (albeit a sports team) but as an aid of assistance to help players/athletes rise from injuries and setbacks to get them back to playing what they love and are so passionate about. 

 

Original career thoughts

 

My first instinct was to become a physiotherapist as I’m sure you’re aware of who they are and what they do to treat patients. It wasn’t until looking at different universities that I came across sports therapy. I didn’t really know what a sports therapist was or what they did until I started to look into university courses in more detail. A sports therapist will see a range of sporting injuries and the public over any form of concern to provide treatment, rehabilitation, and support with advice on prevention of injury or diagnosis. Knowing that this would lead me nicely into sports teams if I wanted to go down that route later, drew me into choosing the course as I could be sport specific but also have the skills to treat the public and day to day conditions. 

 

Subject choices throughout my education

 

To be able to get to where I am now, I had chosen specific subjects that would relate nicely to the area I have always really wanted to go into (sports). At GCSE level, my extra subjects I chose was French, geography, dance, and PE. I then went on to do A-Levels and chose, Biology, chemistry, and PE. These subjects were a lot more specific to the university degree I wanted to complete and through hard work I received an unconditional offer from Coventry University which was my first choice. I was very happy to say the least as I never managed to sit my A-Levels due to covid closing all schools down and everyone having to isolate. 

 

Starting university during COVID

 

During my first year of university, COVID affected the hands-on part of learning that the sports and exercise therapy course involves. Despite this, we still had online lectures and tried to fit in practical sessions when we could as the restrictions eased. In first year, I learnt soft tissue massage, core anatomy, peripheral anatomy, and exercise therapy of which I managed to pass all exams under the circumstances given and get into second year. There were times within first year that were challenging like the assessments we had to complete due to the style in which they needed to be presented in with correct referencing. I had never referenced journal articles or text prior to starting university so this was a new learning curve for me and with help from my lecturers, I learnt to reference correctly. 

 

With COVID restrictions eased even more when I started back in second year, my learning experience was a lot better and I could practice my handling skills more with lecturers there for guidance in person. Experiences like working in clinic and pitch-side became available and I have enjoyed doing both! So far in second year, I have learnt about trauma management, data collection, rehabilitation and applied vertebral manual therapy. I still have one semester left in second year and I look forward to learning even more.  

 

Experience in a professional setting at the Therapy Station

 

Alongside studying in my second year, I had asked Mark at The Therapy Station if I could do some work experience with him to see how a clinic is ran and how real-life practice can differ to university as a glimpse into ‘the real world’ of a sports therapy practitioner was very interesting to me. Mark and the team kindly took me on, and I have been doing my work experience here since I started my second year. I have gained valuable knowledge about the clinic and practice ‘in the real world’ and I am so grateful that I have been able to grasp this opportunity with both hands and get stuck right into it. I can’t thank Mark and the team enough as they have been giving up their time to help me and give me as much experience as possible within the clinic setting.

 

Future education I want to pursue

 

After I have finished my BSc degree, I would like to do a masters in Strength and Conditioning as I believe that this will help me a lot through the process of enabling me to rehabilitate clients back to their full potential with the knowledge and ability to do so from pre injury, right the way up to match ready (reinjury prevention) along with the public being able to do their normal routines without a glitch.

 

Thankful for my experiences

 

I can’t wait to see what the future holds for me, and my career having had the experiences I am learning from now and future experiences too which will better me as a sports therapist. I am also very thankful for the Therapy Station team for letting me gain experience from them in such an unprecedented time as they know how much it means to me to gain extra knowledge and understanding before I qualify and get my degree. Hopefully, one day, I too will have my very own well-established clinic like the Therapy Station to pass on my knowledge and help people get back to their desired level of health and physical fitness and push beyond expectations. 

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About Maretha

Marketing & Admin

Bachelors of Commerce Degree in Marketing

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