Postgraduate Course

MSc Sports Therapy

MSc Sports Therapy


The details
Sports Therapy
October 2024
1 year
Colchester Campus

There is a growing demand for sports therapists in the UK. Our MSc Sports Therapy builds on your sports-related first degree (eg BSc Sport and Exercise Science, BSc Sports Performance and Coaching, or similar). With our state-of-the-art facilities and science-based approach, you will gain the knowledge and skills to become a sports therapist who can practice in various professional settings.

You will develop an exceptional understanding of the science and research that underpins the practice of sports therapy and cultivate the technical skills to deliver high-quality sports therapy support. Through learning environments with an applied focus, you will have a platform to hone your practical skills, participate in small group discussions and share expertise and knowledge with your peers.

Alongside your timetabled classes, you will complete between 200 and 250 hours of placement as part of the course. Some of these hours will be in our Sports Therapy Clinic, where you will consult with performance scholars, students, staff, and members of the public, under the guidance and supervision of our experienced sports therapy staff. You'll also be given the opportunity to work with a variety of sports clubs and teams, ranging from recreational to elite levels.

This course is also available to study on a part-time basis.

Professional accreditation

Accredited by the Society of Sports Therapists.

Why we're great.
  • Gain the practical skill set and theoretical knowledge to become a Graduate Sports Therapist.
  • Work in our purpose-built and well-equipped Sports Therapy Clinic under the supervision of a Practice Educator, as well as with a variety of sports clubs and teams.
  • We are 23rd in the UK for research power in sport and exercise sciences Times Higher Education research power measure, Research Excellence Framework 2021).

Our expert staff

This course offers research-led study and high-quality teaching from lecturers with experience working in elite sport and across a diverse range of athletes and the general population. We are 23rd in the UK for research power in sport and exercise sciences (Times Higher Education research power measure, Research Excellence Framework 2021). As part of our vibrant sports science community, you will learn from and work alongside internationally recognised academic researchers with industry links to professional organisations such as AFC Wimbledon, Saracens Rugby, Ipswich Town FC, and Southend United FC.

Key academic staff for this course includes:

  • Dr Sally Waterworth – a Graduate Sports Therapist with over 20 years' experience of working with recreational to professional athletes from a variety of sports. Sally's research focuses on the impact of interactions between training and nutrition on performance and health.
  • Tracy Lewis – a physiotherapist with 25 years' experience working in the public and private sector and specialising in elite sport. Tracy worked for The Football Association for 12 years where she was Head of Physiotherapy for Women for 9 years, working with English International players from youth to senior level. Tracy's research interests include injury surveillance in female sport with a particular interest in football.
  • Dr Louis Howe - a UKSCA-accredited strength and conditioning coach with over a decade of experience working with international athletes from a variety of sports. Louis' research focuses on resistance training and its impact on health and performance.

Specialist facilities

Our specialist facilities include our on-campus Sports Therapy Clinic, Sport Arena, strength and conditioning facility, specialist sport and physiology laboratories, and dedicated sports therapy laboratories.

You will also:

  • Have access to a wide range of specialist sports therapy equipment for training and testing purposes within our state-of-the-art Human Movement Laboratory.
  • Have opportunities to gain valuable experience working with elite athletes in our Human Performance Unit and with performance scholars, students and staff in our Sports Therapy Clinic.
  • Be able to use our dedicated research facilities, from an isokinetic dynamometer to 12-camera 3D motion analysis system, to gas and blood analysis systems.
  • Have the chance to conduct your dissertation research alongside academics and PhD students in dedicated research facilities.

Your future

Upon graduation, you'll be well equipped for a career as a sports therapist and to be able to work with athletes at any level and across a variety of sports. Typical career destinations include sports therapy or multidisciplinary clinics, professional sport, youth sport academies, the health and fitness industry, teaching, and academic research.

We have great industry links and work closely with the University's Careers Services to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

Sport scholarships

Our Performance Sport Scholarship programme has been created for talented athletes playing at regional, national or international level, and offers a range of benefits. We want students competing in our focus sports (basketball, volleyball, tennis and football), as well as other team sports and individual athletes, to contribute to our performance sport programme. Our scholarships can include fee discounts of up to 100%, offered to athletes who demonstrate sporting excellence. Athletes who are awarded the scholarship may also receive a host of other benefits, including free kit, access to state-of-the-art facilities, performance coaching, the option to live in our Athlete Village (accommodation fees may vary) and a support package valued up to £1,500. These benefits are designed to help athletes focus on their training, and development, and to enable them to reach their full potential alongside their studies.

Entry requirements

UK entry requirements

A relevant first degree OR a relevant professional experience or qualifications that demonstrate the ability to study at Level 7, as well as 3-5 years postgraduate experience in the field of Hand Therapy. Applicants should be experienced clinicians, who are already working clinically in their area of practice at level 7, and should hold current registration with the relevant UK or equivalent professional body (HCPC or equivalent).

Applicants will require a minimum of 1 year post-registration experience and relevant musculoskeletal experience, and must be currently registered with the relevant UK or equivalent professional body.

International & EU entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications from applicants studying in the EU and other countries. Get in touch with any questions you may have about the qualifications we accept. Remember to tell us about the qualifications you have already completed or are currently taking.

Sorry, the entry requirements for the country that you have selected are not available here. Please contact our Graduate Admissions team at to request the entry requirements for this country.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, we require IELTS 6.5 overall with a minimum component score of 5.5 If you do not meet our IELTS requirements then you may be able to complete a pre-sessional English pathway that enables you to start your course without retaking IELTS.


Components and modules explained


Components are the blocks of study that make up your course. A component may have a set module which you must study, or a number of modules from which you can choose.

Each component has a status and carries a certain number of credits towards your qualification.

Status What this means
You must take the set module for this component and you must pass. No failure can be permitted.
Core with Options
You can choose which module to study from the available options for this component but you must pass. No failure can be permitted.
You must take the set module for this component. There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the qualification if you fail.
Compulsory with Options
You can choose which module to study from the available options for this component. There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the qualification if you fail.
You can choose which module to study from the available options for this component. There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the qualification if you fail.

The modules that are available for you to choose for each component will depend on several factors, including which modules you have chosen for other components, which modules you have completed in previous years of your course, and which term the module is taught in.


Modules are the individual units of study for your course. Each module has its own set of learning outcomes and assessment criteria and also carries a certain number of credits.

In most cases you will study one module per component, but in some cases you may need to study more than one module. For example, a 30-credit component may comprise of either one 30-credit module, or two 15-credit modules, depending on the options available.

Modules may be taught at different times of the year and by a different department or school to the one your course is primarily based in. You can find this information from the module code. For example, the module code HR100-4-FY means:

HR 100  4  FY

The department or school the module will be taught by.

In this example, the module would be taught by the Department of History.

The module number. 

The UK academic level of the module.

A standard undergraduate course will comprise of level 4, 5 and 6 modules - increasing as you progress through the course.

A standard postgraduate taught course will comprise of level 7 modules.

A postgraduate research degree is a level 8 qualification.

The term the module will be taught in.

  • AU: Autumn term
  • SP: Spring term
  • SU: Summer term
  • FY: Full year 
  • AP: Autumn and Spring terms
  • PS: Spring and Summer terms
  • AS: Autumn and Summer terms


Sports Therapy Treatments

Sports Therapists use a variety of treatment techniques. These are applied to joints/soft tissue with the aim of reducing pain, minimising inflammation, optimising healing, and restoring mobility/function in acute and chronic injuries/conditions. Evidence-informed and appropriate use of Sports Therapy treatment must be underpinned by contemporary understanding of their effects and consideration of any biological, psychological, and sociological factors which are important when managing pain, dysfunction, and tissue healing.

View Sports Therapy Treatments on our Module Directory


Injury Assessment and Clinical Reasoning

Sports Therapists will work as independent practitioners. This module will cover common joint and regional injuries and provide the skills required to undertake a clinical assessment of a peripheral and spinal joints. This assessment process will be supported by evidence-based research to help students understand the assessment process and make clinically reasoned choices surrounding this process.

View Injury Assessment and Clinical Reasoning on our Module Directory


Sports Therapy Placement

Work-based learning is a key aspect of your development into an autonomous practitioner. You will undertake 200 hours (not exceeding 250 hours) of supervised clinical placement in a sport and/or exercise related environment as a PSRB requirement. At least 50 of these hours will take place in the University's clinic. Additionally, you will complete a two-day Sports Trauma course. You will be supported in obtaining and undertaking further supervised placement activities outside of the University. On completion of this module you will be able to demonstrate achievement of the Society of Sports Therapists Standards of Proficiency drawing on your learning from the experience undertaking this module and other modules within the course.

View Sports Therapy Placement on our Module Directory


Research Project

This module will provide you with the experience of how to apply your skills and knowledge in an empirical investigation of a topic they find interesting. It will allow you to plan the organisation and timing of their work with a high degree of independence and self-motivation.

View Research Project on our Module Directory


Functional Anatomy and Pathophysiology

Sports Therapists deal primarily with musculoskeletal complaints, therefore require a thorough knowledge anatomy, pathophysiology and function. One of the primary tasks of a Sports Therapy is to optimise movement, whether in relation to reducing the risk of injury or injury rehabilitation. This module introduces you to anatomy, pathophysiology and the scientific basis underpinning movement.

View Functional Anatomy and Pathophysiology on our Module Directory


Exercise Rehabilitation

This module focuses on functional rehabilitation within the practice of a Sports Therapist. You will develop clinical reasoning skills that support exercise prescription, with an emphasis on evidence-based practice adopted by healthcare professionals for a variety of injuries. You will acquire fundamental skills that enable you to plan a progressive programme for any injury and assess an athlete's readiness to progress. You will also be introduced to the underpinning practical skills required for the delivery an of exercise programmes designed to support the rehabilitation process.

View Exercise Rehabilitation on our Module Directory


Return to Sport

This module focuses on the final stages of the rehabilitation process and returning the injured athlete back to the sports arena. You will develop clinical reasoning skills that support exercise prescription for sports participation, with an emphasis on evidence-based practice adopted by healthcare professionals for a variety of injuries. You will acquire fundamental skills that enable you to plan a progressive programme for any injury and assess an athlete’s readiness to return to sports training. You will also be introduced to the underpinning practical skills required for the delivery of a return to sport exercise programme.

View Return to Sport on our Module Directory


Critical Enquiry and Evidence-Based Practice

This module will give students the opportunity to gain a comprehensive understanding of the complexities in critically evaluating study design, analysis and interpretation of research studies. The module will cover the practical usage and critical analysis of different research methodologies in traditional research setting and within an applied environment.

View Critical Enquiry and Evidence-Based Practice on our Module Directory


Our MSc Sports Therapy is an innovative and wide-ranging course, with a strong vocational focus to develop industry-specific knowledge and skills. You will gain a strong understanding of scientific principles and concepts that underpin a practitioner's decision-making process in injury assessment, treatment, and rehabilitation. You will also develop the professional skills required for enhancing employability opportunities.

Through a combination of lectures, practicals, and seminars, this course offers you the opportunity to graduate with a Masters degree and eligibility to apply for full membership of the Society of Sports Therapists.

Postgraduate Taught students in the School of Sport, Rehabilitation and Exercise Sciences typically attend two-hour workshops, or a one-hour lecture and one-hour seminar for each module each week.


Assessment strategies emphasise a variety of learning styles and approaches.

These include:

  • Practical assessments
  • Oral presentations
  • Written assessments such as literature reviews
  • Client reports and case studies
  • Final research project

Fees and funding

Home/UK fee


International fee


What's next

Open Days

We hold Open Days for all our applicants throughout the year. Our Colchester Campus events are a great way to find out more about studying at Essex, and give you the chance to:

  • tour our campus and accommodation
  • find out answers to your questions about our courses, student finance, graduate employability, student support and more
  • meet our students and staff

If the dates of our organised events aren’t suitable for you, feel free to get in touch by emailing and we’ll arrange an individual campus tour for you.

2024 Open Days (Colchester Campus)

  • Saturday 21 September 2024 - September Open Day
  • Saturday 26 October 2024 - October Open Day


You can apply for this postgraduate course online. Before you apply, please check our information about necessary documents that we'll ask you to provide as part of your application.

We aim to respond to applications within two weeks. If we are able to offer you a place, you will be contacted via email.

For information on our deadline to apply for this course, please see our ‘how to apply' information.

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Find out more

The University makes every effort to ensure that this information on its programme specification is accurate and up-to-date. Exceptionally it can be necessary to make changes, for example to courses, facilities or fees. Examples of such reasons might include, but are not limited to: strikes, other industrial action, staff illness, severe weather, fire, civil commotion, riot, invasion, terrorist attack or threat of terrorist attack (whether declared or not), natural disaster, restrictions imposed by government or public authorities, epidemic or pandemic disease, failure of public utilities or transport systems or the withdrawal/reduction of funding. Changes to courses may for example consist of variations to the content and method of delivery of programmes, courses and other services, to discontinue programmes, courses and other services and to merge or combine programmes or courses. The University will endeavour to keep such changes to a minimum, and will also keep students informed appropriately by updating our programme specifications. The University would inform and engage with you if your course was to be discontinued, and would provide you with options, where appropriate, in line with our Compensation and Refund Policy.

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