A kinesiotherapist helps people who have limited mobility to increase their strength, endurance and functionality. To become a kinesiotherapist, it is necessary to undergo intensive study in kinesiology, which is the science of human movement. Kinesiology, also known as human kinetics, focuses on how the human body moves and functions. This is not be confused with applied kinesiology, a controversial alternative medicine practice used in chiropractics.
Kinesiotherapy is an allied health career. Allied health professionals are not medical professionals, like doctors or nurses. There is no medical license required to become a kinesiotherapist. Nevertheless, these positions are necessary to keep a healthcare system running smoothly. The allied health professions also include medical assistants and midwives as well as radiologists and pharmacists.
Although different countries vary on their accreditation programs for individuals who want to become a kinesiotherapist, most North American kinesiotherapists have at least a Bachelor’s of Science in kinesiology. There is no licensing requirement for this field in the United States, but registry is required. There is also an exam to gauge the working knowledge of each registrant. Understanding biomechanics, anatomy, and physiology are all required to become a kinesiotherapist. The kinesiotherapist then takes these concepts and relates to human health, society and quality of life.
Deciding to become a kinesiotherapist means working with the public and applying human kinetics principles to your patients. Most of the work is done in a medical setting, such as a hospital or rehabilitation clinic. The job description combines teaching patients about their body’s mechanics while mentoring them as they reach their full mobile potential. Kinesiotherapy treatments might include therapeutic exercise, aquatic therapy or prosthetic rehabilitation. Other treatments options include in-home exercise therapy, driver training and geriatric rehabilitation.
Patients who see a kinesiotherapist can only do so after being prescribed the treatment from a qualified medical professional. This usually happens after that patient has suffered from an acute state of illness or injury. Kinesiotherapy patients should be in a medically stable condition and mentally ready to work on regaining lost functionality. They are then evaluated and a course of treatment is determined to get them back to physical wellness.
Kinesiotherapy patients may include cancer patients in remission, recent amputees or stroke suffers. For example, a kinesiotherapist might treat an elderly man who has lost some function in his right side due to a stroke. Therapy may consist of therapeutic exercise to rebuild strength or ambulation training to improve walking. On the other hand, an amputee may see a kinesiotherapist for training to use his new prosthetic leg.