Sports therapy is one of the fastest-growing careers in the sports and healthcare sector. At Kent, we have world-leading experts who can pass on the latest techniques. Our experience includes working with Olympians and Paralympians, as well as the local community, including the elderly and frail.
This programme is currently accredited by the British Association of Sports Rehabilitators and Trainers (BASRaT). Graduates can apply for accreditation and full membership of BASRaT, the UK regulator for sport rehabilitation graduates.
Our degree programme
We will be relocating the School of Sport and Exercise Sciences to the Canterbury campus from September 2021. If you are due to start your course in September 2020, the first year of your degree will be taught in Medway. This exciting move will allow us to provide enhanced facilities, study and social space for you as well as helping you become part of a broader academic community.
Your first year in Medway covers topics such as functional anatomy and biomechanics, sports and remedial massage, sports injuries, peripheral joint assessment, and introductory modules on fitness testing, professional skills and human physiology.
In your second and final years in Canterbury, you study a range of subjects including sports rehabilitation, exercise prescription, therapeutic modalities, injury prevention, return to sports fitness training and soft tissue methods. You can also complete a research project and dissertation, and take part in clinical practice and clinical rehabilitation, both on external placement and in the University's specialised sports injury clinic.
You gain the academic, clinical and professional skills required of a sports therapist, whose role it is to diagnose, treat and prevent sporting injuries. You also learn how to create exercise and training programmes tailored to individual clients.
Our laboratories are based in the £11 million Medway Park development, a regional centre of sporting excellence. They include the latest equipment, such as:
an environmental chamber which can recreate the atmosphere in the Brazilian jungle or at the top of Everest an anti-gravity treadmill, originally developed to help NASA astronauts to exercise in space cycling and rowing ergometers to measure anaerobic capacity an isokinetic dynamometer to measure muscle and joint function brain and muscle stimulators 3D motion video analysis imaging and treatment ultrasound gait analysis and force pedals blood testing and gas analysis equipment a rehabilitation gymnasium.
There is a thriving sports scene for students. Sports clubs at the Medway campus include athletics, badminton, basketball, cricket, football, kickboxing, rowing, taekwondo, Thai boxing and volleyball, plus women’s netball and men’s futsal and rugby.
With our free shuttle bus, it’s also easy to join the sports clubs on the Canterbury campus. These include American football, archery, boxing, caving, canoeing, cycling, equestrian, cheerleading, fencing, floorball, golf, gymnastics, hockey, judo, karate, kendo, korfball, kung fu, lacrosse, mountaineering, sailing and windsurfing, skydiving, snooker and pool, snowsports, squash, swimming, surfing, tennis, trampolining, ultimate frisbee and women’s rugby.
The School of Sport and Exercise Sciences has links to many sporting bodies. It works with companies such as Science in Sport and Team Sky, and with organisations such as:
the NHS RFU (governing English rugby) English Institute of Sport British Cycling UK Sport World Anti-Doping Agency UEFA UK Sport Ministry of Defence.
If you are already competing at county level or equivalent, you can apply for a sports scholarship from the University. One of our best-known graduates is Olympic gold medallist Susannah Townsend. During her time at Kent she had a sports scholarship and played for Canterbury Hockey Club (where she continues to play midfield).
The programme involves taking part in practical therapy sessions, clinical practice, designing training, small group seminars and private study. You are taught by a combination of lectures, practical sessions and seminars each week. You also spend additional time developing your clinical skills and experience through placements and in the student clinic.
The methods of assessment vary and predominately involve coursework, observed assessment, practical tests and clinical assessments. Some modules also feature written examinations.
Knowledge and understanding
You gain knowledge and understanding of:
- anatomy, nutrition and physiological principles related to sports and exercise
- current developments in the practice and theory of sports therapy
- the theoretical basis of qualitative and quantitative research
- concepts of sport and exercise therapy relevant to becoming an autonomous sports therapist
- the underpinning theory of prevention, assessment, treatment and rehabilitation of sports injuries.
You gain intellectual skills in the following areas:
- academic study including critical evaluation
- how to plan, design, execute and communicate a piece of independent work that shows critical engagement with the relevant data
- the use of knowledge to solve familiar and unfamiliar problems in order to develop reasoned arguments and challenge assumptions
- self-appraisal and reflection on practice
- how to recognise and respond to moral, legal, ethical and safety issues related to sports therapy.
You gain subject-specific skills in how to:
- undertake competent, evaluative and reflective sports and exercise therapy
- make judgements from the verbal and physical presentation of an athlete
- apply and evaluate methods and techniques to prevent, treat and rehabilitate commonly-occurring sports injuries
- demonstrate safe, appropriate, confident and competent patient-handling skills.
You gain transferable skills in:
- communication, presentation, numeracy and IT
- interactive skills and group-work
- the ability to self-appraise and reflect on practice
- the ability to plan and manage your own learning.
The programme aims to:
- enable students to implement prevention strategies, assessment, treatment and rehabilitation for injured athletes and exercisers
- provide students with a multi-disciplinary education and an insight into being part of a multi-disciplinary team in sporting environments
- present a valuable educational experience with the opportunity to learn through the integration of theory and practice
- ensure that our graduating sports therapists have developed the level of knowledge and professional competencies to meet professional regulatory requirements.