Nov 8TH

Work Experience – a personal view from HE student Rebecca Holland

Rebecca is currently taking a BSc Hons Sports Therapy Top Up course at Moulton College and, as part of her second year module, she was required to undertake 125 hours of work experience within a sports related environment.

Rebecca says ‘I had the experience of working at a multi-disciplinary clinic in Higham Ferrers, shadowing an Osteopath and participating alongside the sports therapist that also works both at the clinic and Wellingborough Rugby Club.

Many osteopaths incorporate mobilisations and manipulations in their treatment strategies. The osteopath I was shadowing has over 15 years experience and has qualifications in sports massage and acupuncture, which she incorporates into her treatments. With patients' consent, I was able to watch the osteopath perform treatments, taking patients through postural examinations and special joint tests. I was able to observe treatments with patients with hypermobile joints, postural deficits, acute and chronic conditions similar to sports injuries (tennis elbow, rotator cuff injuries, knee and ankle injuries linked to sports activities). The osteopath not only treated adults, also children and babies were treated during my time at the clinic. Cranial osteopathy was a popular method used to treat cranial deformities and problems associated with abnormal behavior in young children and babies and headaches present in adults. The osteopath was undergoing CPD and was in the process of conducting a study on a child who had previously worn a head brace. The study was assessing whether the effects of cranial osteopathy improved his behaviour and the shape of his cranium, through treatment and observations. It was really interesting to watch the approach of treatment and the improvement each week the child visited the clinic.

The concepts and reasoning behind osteopathy treatments has enabled me to take the knowledge I learnt at this placement and apply it to my vertebral and peripheral mobilisations lectures.

I had the opportunity to get hands on at the rugby club, applying pre and post match massage to players. Players had the opportunity to visit the therapist if they experienced any injuries during training or recent fixtures. I witnessed many injuries from hamstring strains and tears, Achilles tendon rupture, rotator cuff strains and lateral ankle ligament damage.

I was able to apply my advanced massage skills, through STRs (soft tissue release), NMTs (Neuromuscular techniques) and MET’S (muscle energy techniques) on the players.

Experience here allowed me to grasp where each muscle is positioned in the body and improve my understanding of the origins and insertions of each muscle. I was able to apply special tests, massage and advise home care exercises that boosted my confidence and communicational skills.

I thoroughly enjoyed my time at the rugby club and I still attend training sessions during the week. I hope to apply my skills we learn in third year into treatments.