It’s a fascinating field of study and if you are interested in the connection between the body’s structure and the way it functions, then studying to be an osteopath is an option you could consider.
What is Osteopathy?Osteopathy is a holistic discipline that focuses on how the skeleton, joints, muscles, nerves, circulation, connective tissue and internal organs function as a whole. Osteopaths are trained to evaluate, diagnose and administer a wide range of hands-on techniques, and can identify dysfunction in your body.
Osteopaths may use techniques such as stretching and massage for general treatment along with mobilisation of specific joints and soft tissues. They will occasionally use gentle manipulation if it’s appropriate and safe. They may also use muscle energy techniques, where contracted muscles are released by alternately being stretched and made to work against resistance.
Options for Studying OsteopathyOsteopaths are university trained, government registered health professionals. Osteopaths are primary healthcare practitioners and are trained to recognise conditions that require medical referral. They are also trained to perform standard medical examinations of the musculoskeletal, cardiovascular, respiratory and nervous systems.
Osteopathy is a five-year university degree course, and as such will have prerequisites for getting into the course. There is also a postgraduate program, but of course this will require previous education and training as prerequisites. Check with the education provider for what you may need.
During the degree course, you will study anatomy, physiology, pathology, general medical diagnosis and osteopathic techniques. There is usually a clinical component to courses as well, where you will have to complete a considerable number of hours observing treatments and then treating under supervision.
It’s important to consider whether you have the aptitude for such an intensive science-based degree, and to think about the timeframes involved, but if it’s for you, you can be assured of a satisfying and fulfilling journey towards your future career.