Footballers Graduate as Physiotherapists

Footballers Graduate as Physiotherapists

The University of Salford (England) wouldn’t have a bad 7-a-side team, after a group of professional footballers have qualified as physiotherapists from the University.


The footballers, including former QPR player Rob Hulse and current Stockport County player Jason Oswell, will now be able to work in the industry thanks to a partnership between the University and the Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA).


Rob, who now plans to get a physiotherapy role in the NHS, said: “Studying physiotherapy was the natural route for me to go down after I retired. The support from the lecturers at Salford and from the PFA has been fantastic.”


The players all completed the BSC (Hons) Physiotherapy (part time) course thanks to substantial funding from their union the PFA. Rob and Jason, who both also played for Crewe Alexandra, praised the partnership between the University and the PFA for the work they do supporting footballers finding a new career. Rob, aged 37, said:  “When you’re a footballer, your mind is only focused on the next game, so you’re in a bubble. “It is so important for footballers to think about the next step. Studies have shown that some footballers can experience a loss of self when they eventually retire from the game, so courses like this at Salford University are a brilliant way to forge an alternative career.”


The other footballers who graduated at Salford’s Lowry arts centre include former Manchester City player Stephen Jordan, Tranmere Rovers player Charlie Barnett, Walsall player Joe Edwards, Wigan Athletic’s Sean Myler and Northampton Town goalkeeper Alex O’Reilly.


The BSc (Hons) Physiotherapy course is accredited by the Charted Institution of Physiotherapists, and offers students the opportunity to go on industry placements to boost their opportunities for employment. Previous graduates from the part time physiotherapy route have included ex Nottingham Forrest player John Thompson, who now works as a sports physiotherapist within the NHS.