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Physiotherapists treat a range of physical problems caused by illness, injury, accidents or the ageing process.

Several forms of treatment come under the term ‘physiotherapy’. Treatments include massage therapy, acupuncture, electrotherapy, exercises and movements, and education and advice.

When you visit the Manchester Movement Unit for physiotherapy, our skilled physiotherapists will examine you and prescribe an individual treatment plan to address your problem.

Your physiotherapist will discuss treatment options with you and they’ll make sure that you’re comfortable with the physiotherapy treatment they’re suggesting.

What can physiotherapy treat?

Physiotherapy most often treats musculoskeletal disorders such as back pain, knee pain, arthritis and muscle strains, as well the prevention and rehabilitation of sports injuries. Physiotherapy doesn’t just speed up recovery, it also helps to prevent the problem happening again.

Our specialist physiotherapists at the Manchester Movement Unit also have expertise in treating a variety of other conditions, including stroke and head injury rehabilitation, and neurological conditions such as multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease.

We also have a specialist Vestibular Physiotherapist, who assesses and treats symptoms relating to dizziness and balance. You can find out more about our team and their specialisms here.

Physiotherapy can also help people who are simply looking to develop a more active lifestyle or would like advice on their current lifestyle. We can provide guidance on fitness, posture and small adjustments to help keep your body healthy and strong.

Whether you have suffered a sports injury, have hurt yourself on the road or would like some tips on posture at work, our physiotherapists at the Manchester Movement Unit can offer treatments to help return you to health and fitness in the shortest time.

What can I expect at my first appointment?

At your first appointment, your physiotherapist will spend time getting to know you and the problem that has brought you to the Manchester Movement Unit. They’ll also examine your body and you may need to undress, so we suggest bringing loose fitting clothing, such a vest and shorts, to help you feel more comfortable.

Physiotherapy takes into account the whole person, and so your physiotherapist will examine your general health, ask around your hobbies, your lifestyle and working patterns. This helps to make sure that they have a full picture of your health and can understand the impact your condition has on your life.

Your physiotherapist will examine your body to assess your posture and range of movement, and to learn more about any pain you may have. At each stage, your physiotherapist will explain what they plan to do and talk through their reasoning behind it.

Depending upon your problem, your physiotherapist may ask you to move in certain ways, test muscles or perform some functional tasks. They may also perform some special tests to identify which specific structures could be causing your problems. During the examination, your physiotherapist will ask questions to find out further information about your problems. They’ll constantly check that you are comfortable, so please say if you feel any discomfort.

Once your physiotherapist has examined you, they’ll explain your problem to you so that you can really understand what is happening. Then, they’ll talk through a treatment plan, letting you know the treatments they feel will have the maximum benefit to you.

Your physiotherapist may do some treatment at your initial appointment but this depends upon the problem. This is because, in some cases, the assessment can irritate the problem and by carrying out treatment in the same session, it may produce pain or worsen irritation. If this is the case, your physiotherapist will discuss this with you.

Your physiotherapist may also recommend exercises, stretches or massage techniques that you can continue doing in your own time to help you manage pain in the long term or reduce your risk of injuring yourself again.

Each physiotherapy appointment at the Manchester Movement Unit lasts up to 45 minutes. You may find some sessions are a little shorter as the therapist has to document their findings within the session.

The number of physiotherapy sessions you’ll require depends upon your condition, how long you’ve had the problem, and how quickly your body responds to treatment.

Your physiotherapist will discuss if, when, and how often they think you’ll need to return to receive the full benefit of treatment.  


Dr Christopher McCarthy

Clinical Fellow

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