Sport Science

Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation - BSc (Hons)

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Overview

Sports therapists work to diagnose, treat and prevent injuries by implementing rehabilitation programmes to restore full fitness in the field of sports, exercise and health. You can work in a range of environments, from treating elite athletes to teaching specialist exercise groups and setting up your own business as an independent Graduate Sports Therapist and Rehabilitator.

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

Your first year 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, 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.

Study resources

Our laboratories are based in the Chipperfield Building in the Canterbury campus. They include the latest equipment, such as our:

  • anti-gravity treadmill, originally developed to help NASA astronauts to exercise in space
  • cycling and rowing ergometers to measure anaerobic capacity
  • 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
  • rehabilitation gymnasium.

Our environmental chamber, which can recreate the atmosphere in the Brazilian jungle or at the top of Everest, is based on the Medway campus.

Extra activities

There is a thriving sports scene for students at the Canterbury campus. Team Kent, funded by the Students' Union, run more than 60 different clubs including; athletics, badminton, basketball, boxing, cricket, football, cheerleading, lacrosse, caving, taekwondo, rowing, hockey, football, rugby, equestrian, korfball, table tennis, judo and volleyball, plus ultimate frisbee. 

Professional network

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.

Sports scholarships

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).

Entry requirements

Home/EU students

The University will consider applications from students offering a wide range of qualifications. Typical requirements are listed below. Students offering alternative qualifications should contact us for further advice. 

Please note that meeting this typical offer/minimum requirement does not guarantee an offer being made. Please also see our general entry requirements.

New GCSE grades

If you’ve taken exams under the new GCSE grading system, please see our conversion table to convert your GCSE grades.

  • Certificate

    A level

    BCC including B in an appropriate subject (eg Biology, Chemistry, Sport, Physical Education, Physics, Statistics, Mathematics, Applied Science)

  • Certificate

    GCSE

    Mathematics grade C

  • Certificate

    Access to HE Diploma

    The University will not necessarily make conditional offers to all Access candidates but will continue to assess them on an individual basis. 

    If we make you an offer, you will need to obtain/pass the overall Access to Higher Education Diploma and may also be required to obtain a proportion of the total level 3 credits and/or credits in particular subjects at merit grade or above.

  • Certificate

    BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma (formerly BTEC National Diploma)

    Distinction, Merit, Merit in a sport or science subject

  • Certificate

    International Baccalaureate

    34 points overall or 15 at HL including Biology/Chemistry/Physics/Mathematics, Sports, Exercise and Health Science 5 at HL or 6 at SL and Mathematics 4 at HL or SL.

International students

The University welcomes applications from international students. Our international recruitment team can guide you on entry requirements. See our International Student website for further information about entry requirements for your country. 

However, please note that international fee-paying students cannot undertake a part-time programme due to visa restrictions.

If you need to increase your level of qualification ready for undergraduate study, we offer a number of International Foundation Programmes.

Meet our staff in your country

For more advice about applying to Kent, you can meet our staff at a range of international events.

English Language Requirements

Please see our English language entry requirements web page.

Please note that if you are required to meet an English language condition, we offer a number of 'pre-sessional' courses in English for Academic Purposes. You attend these courses before starting your degree programme. 

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Course structure

Duration: 3 years full-time, 6 years part-time

The following modules are indicative of those offered on this programme. This listing is based on the current curriculum and may change year to year in response to new curriculum developments and innovation.

Stage 1

Compulsory modules currently include

Students will cover the biomechanics of movement, movement patterns of the lower limb, upper limb and trunk; bones and surface markings of the lower limb, upper limb and spine; joints of the lower limb, upper limb and spine; muscles (origin, insertion and actions) of the lower limb, upper limb and trunk; soft tissue structures of the lower limb, upper limb and trunk; and nerves of the lower limb, upper limb and trunk.

Find out more about SS345

The main aims of this module are to explore and gain knowledge of human physiology. Students will study the major systems of the human body including the musculoskeletal system, the cardiovascular system and the nervous system. Students will gain an understanding of their structure and function.

Find out more about SS346

This module looks at the systematic processes involved in testing fitness. Consideration is given to the evaluation of fitness in both the field and in the laboratory. A range of fitness tests for a variety of parameters of fitness are covered. Students are taught to consider the reliability and validity of the tests as well as the specificity of the test to the population they are working with.

A synopsis of topics included in this module are:

- Health screening

- Fitness assessment & evaluation

- Principles of sport & exercise training

Find out more about SS348

This module will cover topics including, but not limited to: Introduction to referencing and plagiarism, Introduction to academic writing style, Introduction to history of science, Introduction to critical thinking, Introduction to research methods, Introduction to statistical concept and research ethics.

Find out more about SS349

This module will enable students to interpret the pathophysiology of a range of sports injuries by mechanism of injury, anatomical region and tissue type. The module develops the students' ability to relate the mechanism of injury to the pathology of sports injuries. Students will also be required to understand the risk factors associated with sports injuries.

Find out more about SS351

This module will introduce skills in problem solving and clinical reasoning including subjective and objective assessment and the relation to presenting signs and symptoms. The module develops your ability to examine and clinically assess your client, focusing on the upper and lower limbs. You will learn how to assess range of movement, muscle length and strength, ligamentous stability as well as how and when to apply a number of special tests.

Find out more about SS352

This module will enable students to acquire an understanding of sports massage, in order to practically demonstrate a range of sports massage skills effectively and safely. The module also develops the students' ability to record and review their own sports massage sessions with clients.

Content will include all skills required in order to carry out a full body sports massage. Basic sports massage strokes such as effleurage, petrissage, tapotement and frictions will be included. These strokes will be applied on the back, shoulders, gluteals, legs, feet, arms, hands, chest, neck and abdomen.

Underpinning knowledge will include record keeping, professional ethics and code of practice, as well as health and safety regulations.

Find out more about SS353

Stage 2

Compulsory modules currently include

This module will provide students with a grounding in training theory and application, specifically looking at programme design and implementation in health and athletic performance.

Indicative content includes:

- Principles of sport & exercise training

- Training methodology

- Programme design & organisation

- Adaptations to training

Find out more about SS570

This module will take students through the research study design process. In collaboration with a member of staff (supervisor), students will design and produce a research and ethics proposal that will be carried out at Stage 3 as their Dissertation Project. Sufficient detail and rigor in this module should allow dissertation projects to be undertaken at the start of Stage 3.

Find out more about SS573

A synopsis of the curriculum

Introduction and knowledge check

Independent and paired t-tests

Regression analysis

Further regression analysis

Qualitative research

Independent ANOVA

Factorial ANOVA

Repeated measures ANOVA

Non-parametric data

Find out more about SS575

Principles of Rehabilitation will enable you to recognise and describe the different stages and components of rehabilitation. Youwill learn how to progress athletes from one stage to the next and also recognise when an athlete needs to regress their rehabilitation programme. You will learn how to adapt exercises according to your clients' needs. The different stages of healing and recovery of a range of sports injuries will be taken into account

Find out more about SS580

This module is an introduction to a variety of treatment modalities including manual therapy techniques, electrophysical modalities, bracing and taping techniques and analysis tools that can be used e.g. for gait assessment. Therapeutic modalities for rehabilitators will enable you, to pursue inquiry into interventions in the treatment of common peripheral and vertebral dysfunction and the theory that underlies practice.This module develops your ability to select and use therapeutic modalities that are commonly used in rehabilitation. You will be required to analyse current issues in the use of therapeutic modalities within a rehabilitation environment. You will learn a range of interventions and skills in the treatment of common joint dysfunctions.

In this module, you will be required to complete hours at a supervised work placement in addition to the lectures and practical seminars.

Find out more about SS581

Applied Rehabilitation will enable you to apply the principles of rehabilitation to different tissues and injuries within the body.You will formulate sports specific rehabilitation programmes for their athletes and clients individually and as part of group based rehabilitation. In this module, you will be required to complete hours at a supervised work placement in addition to the lectures and practical seminars.

Find out more about SS582

What does psychology have to do with sport, exercise, and rehabilitation? In this module, you will learn how these are closely related. You will also learn about psychological and emotional responses to sports injuries and chronic conditions.

Topics covered in this module include: adherence to rehabilitation programmes, the importance of motivation, dangerous behaviours in sport, and applied psychological interventions for the injured athlete.

Find out more about SS583

Stage 3

Compulsory modules currently include

This module will enable students to apply the principles of rehabilitation to different tissues and injuries within the body using specialised equipment and techniques and build on their knowledge from previous modules. Students will be able to apply their prior knowledge to different rehabilitation equipment, pre and post operation and specialist areas and formulate sports specific rehabilitation sessions and programmes for their athletes and clients. Students will learn how to screen athletes and how to formulate group based exercise sessions and programmes. Students will study how rehabilitation progresses and how outcomes are measured and assessed.

Find out more about SS584

This module will allow students to develop knowledge in epidemiological analysis of common injuries in different sports and exercise activities and risk factors for injury in specific populations. Students will develop an understanding of an athletes needs analysis and profiles of specific sports and athletic populations. Students will apply this knowledge to design and implement screening and prevention programmes. Students will evaluate injury prevention and return to play programmes by using outcome measures. Students will learn about return to sport criteria for different components of fitness and rehabilitation. These will include strength, proprioception, speed, agility, Range of Movement (ROM), flexibility, cardiovascular. A range of both clinical/lab and field based tests will be covered during the module. Specialised issues relating to specific sports and body regions will also be covered.

Find out more about SS585

- Exercise prescription for the asymptomatic older adult

- Physical activity & cardiovascular diseases

- Physical activity & metabolic diseases

- Physical activity & neurological impairment

- Physical activity & orthopaedic diseases

- Physical activity & pulmonary diseases

- Exercise in cardiac rehabilitation

- Exercise psychology

Find out more about SS523

Soft Tissue Techniques will enable students to pursue inquiry into the treatment of selected soft tissue injuries, using a variety of soft tissue techniques. This module develops the students’ ability to use critical analysis and clinical reasoning skills in the application of soft tissue techniques.

Students will be required to analyse current issues in the use of soft tissue techniques within the field of Sport and Exercise Therapy.

A synopsis of topics included in this module are:

- Deep Tissue Massage

- Soft Tissue Release

- Reciprocal Inhibition

- Trigger Points

- Positional Release

- Taping techniques

Find out more about SS558

The course takes the form of an individual research study. There are 4 taught lectures covering the management of a research project. The research projects are then conducted with the supervision of a department tutor who will advise the student on issues such as methodology, analysis and presentation. It is the student’s responsibility to organise, conduct, analyse and present the research as required.

Find out more about SS566

Fees

The 2021/22 annual tuition fees for UK undergraduate courses have not yet been set by the UK Government. As a guide only full-time tuition fees for Home undergraduates for 2020/21 entry are £9,250:

  • Home full-time £9250
  • International full-time £20500
  • Home part-time £4625
  • International part-time £10250

For details of when and how to pay fees and charges, please see our Student Finance Guide.

Full-time tuition fees for Home undergraduates in 2020 were £9,250.

For students continuing on this programme, fees will increase year on year by no more than RPI + 3% in each academic year of study except where regulated.* 

EU students

Kent is supporting its EU students as the UK leaves the EU with a special EU fee offered for students joining in 2021 for the duration of their programmes. EU, other EEA and Swiss nationals will no longer be eligible for home fee status, undergraduate, postgraduate and advanced learner financial support from Student Finance England for courses starting in academic year 2021/22. It will not affect students starting courses in academic year 2020/21, nor those EU, other EEA and Swiss nationals benefitting from Citizens’ Rights under the EU Withdrawal Agreement, EEA EFTA Separation Agreement or Swiss Citizens’ Rights Agreement respectively. It will also not apply to Irish nationals living in the UK and Ireland whose right to study and to access benefits and services will be preserved on a reciprocal basis for UK and Irish nationals under the Common Travel Area arrangement.

Your fee status

The University will assess your fee status as part of the application process. If you are uncertain about your fee status you may wish to seek advice from UKCISA before applying.

Additional costs

General additional costs

Find out more about accommodation and living costs, plus general additional costs that you may pay when studying at Kent.

Funding

University funding

Kent offers generous financial support schemes to assist eligible undergraduate students during their studies. See our funding page for more details. 

Government funding

You may be eligible for government finance to help pay for the costs of studying. See the Government's student finance website.

Scholarships

General scholarships

Scholarships are available for excellence in academic performance, sport and music and are awarded on merit. For further information on the range of awards available and to make an application see our scholarships website.

The Kent Scholarship for Academic Excellence

At Kent we recognise, encourage and reward excellence. We have created the Kent Scholarship for Academic Excellence. 

The scholarship will be awarded to any applicant who achieves a minimum of AAA over three A levels, or the equivalent qualifications (including BTEC and IB) as specified on our scholarships pages

The scholarship is also extended to those who achieve AAB at A level (or specified equivalents) where one of the subjects is either mathematics or a modern foreign language. Please review the eligibility criteria.

Teaching and assessment

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.

Contact Hours

For a student studying full time, each academic year of the programme will comprise 1200 learning hours which include both direct contact hours and private study hours.  The precise breakdown of hours will be subject dependent and will vary according to modules.  Please refer to the individual module details under Course Structure.

Methods of assessment will vary according to subject specialism and individual modules.  Please refer to the individual module details under Course Structure.

Programme aims

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.

Learning outcomes

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.

Intellectual skills

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.

Subject-specific skills

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.

Transferable skills

You gain transferable skills in:

  • communication, presentation, numeracy and IT
  • interactive skills and group-work
  • problem-solving
  • the ability to self-appraise and reflect on practice
  • the ability to plan and manage your own learning.

Teaching Excellence Framework

All University of Kent courses are regulated by the Office for Students.

Based on the evidence available, the TEF Panel judged that the University of Kent delivers consistently outstanding teaching, learning and outcomes for its students. It is of the highest quality found in the UK.

Please see the University of Kent's Statement of Findings for more information.

Independent rankings

Sports Science at Kent scored 93% overall in The Complete University Guide 2021.

Over 95% of Sports Science graduates who responded to the most recent national survey of graduate destinations were in work or further study within six months (DLHE, 2017).

Careers

Graduate destinations

Our graduates have gone on to work in:

  • sports injury clinics
  • sports clubs
  • English Institute of Sport, or for professional teams
  • the NHS in physical activity or health promotion
  • health and fitness clubs
  • sports development within local authorities
  • national governing bodies of sport
  • teaching PE or science (after taking a PGCE)
  • lecturing and research (after taking a postgraduate programme).

Help finding a job

The School of Sport and Exercise Sciences has an excellent reputation and many links to professional bodies. This network is very useful to students when looking for employment.

The University also has a friendly Careers and Employability Service which can give you advice on how to:

  • apply for jobs
  • write a good CV
  • perform well in interviews.

Career-enhancing skills

Our Sports Therapy graduates are qualified to start work as professionally accredited sports therapists with an excellent range of skills. To help you to appeal to employers across a range of careers, you also develop transferable skills in:

  • computing and IT
  • analysing data and problem solving
  • writing and communicating well.

You can also enhance your degree studies by signing up for one of our Kent Extra activities, such as learning a language or volunteering.

Professional recognition

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.

Apply for Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation - BSc (Hons)

Full-time applicants

Full-time applicants (including international applicants) should apply through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) system. If you need help or advice on your application, you should speak with your careers adviser or contact UCAS Customer Contact Centre. 

The institution code number for the University of Kent is K24, and the code name is KENT.

Application deadlines

See the UCAS website for an outline of the UCAS process and application deadlines. 

If you are applying for courses based at Medway, you should add the campus code K in Section 3(d).

Apply through UCAS

Apply now for part-time study

Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation - BSc (Hons) - part-time at Canterbury

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United Kingdom/EU enquiries

Enquire online for full-time study

Enquire online for part-time study

T: +44 (0)1227 768896

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International student enquiries

Enquire online

T: +44 (0)1227 823254
E: internationalstudent@kent.ac.uk

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