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Focus Areas Master of Physiotherapy

2022 2023 2024 2025
Development of the Profession
Muskuloskeletal with OMT-Title as 2022 as 2023

Focus Areas

Focus Area Musculoskeletal

Advanced clinical knowledge and practical skills for assessments of and interventions on the spine and extremities are covered in the focus area Musculoskeletal. Special topics of musculoskeletal physiotherapy (for example: headache, dizziness, chronic pain) and manipulation of the spine and extremities are taught during the studies. Additionally, an overview of the diagnostics of related fields and broad information on biomechanics and motion analysis is given. The IFOMPT (International Federation of Orthopaedic Manipulative Physical Therapists) recognized title of «Manual Therapist OMT svomp®» is acquired with the focus area musculoskeletal.

«Can there be anything more exciting than focussing on physiotherapy skills and science?! The part-time masters course specialising in musculoskeletal physiotherapy challenges me in both areas and helps me to become a reflective physiotherapist with a background in research.»

Jelka Tirez, MSc student in physiotherapy with the focus on musculoskeletal

Focus Area Paediatrics

Paediatrics focusses on advanced clinical knowledge and practical skills in the diagnosis and therapy of children from neonatal age to adolescence. It deals with motoric learning in children, developmental psychology, pedagogy and didactics, along with the international classification of functional ability, disability and health of children and adolescents (ICF-CY).

The focus of the assessments and interventions in paediatrics is on pathologies from the regions of the musculoskeletal system, internal organs, neuromotor and sensory functions. The course also deals with further special topics (for example: cystic fibrosis, tumours, plexus paresis and burns), paediatric rehabilitation and provision of aids, as well as child abuse and child protection. These competences are supplemented with broad professional information in the fields of biomechanics and motion analysis.

«Specialising in paediatrics on the masters course, I can transfer evidence-based knowledge and research questions directly into my everyday clinical practice while in turn bringing questions from everyday clinical practice into research. The advanced knowledge opens up new options that can be integrated for children and their environment.» 

Lisa Brown, MSc student in physiotherapy with the focus on paediatrics

Focus Area Sport

In the focus area Sport, advanced clinical knowledge and practical skills are taught for the care of sportspeople during training and competition, for treatment after an injury and for injury prevention. The course also provides the extended skills necessary for sports rehabilitation, the care and treatment of top athletes and first aid for injuries at both general and top athletic sporting events. These competencies are supplemented with broad professional information on the areas of training theory and performance diagnostics, sports medicine and nutrition, sports psychology, biomechanics and motion analysis.

The practice-orientated classes take place in Winterthur at our cooperation partner, WIN4. The centre offers comprehensive facilities in the fields of sport, health, training and events. As well as a seminar room, state-of-the-art training equipment is available for rehabilitation and training in the dimensions of strength, speed, endurance and coordination.

The curriculum of the Sport focus area accords with the guidelines of the International Federation of Sports Physical Therapy (IFSPT). The MSc title with sports focus enables registration with the IFSPT.

«What I really like about the masters course in physiotherapy is that if offers me a range of development options. On the one hand I am acquiring in-depth knowledge about treating sports physiotherapy patients, on the other hand I am gaining first experience in clinical research, potentially a future career field.» 

Jan Anderegg, MSc student in physiotherapy with the focus on sport

Focus Area Development of the Profession

The focus area Development of the Profession teaches advanced knowledge and skills that qualify students for activities in research and teaching, as well as for the new and advanced clinical activities resulting from the challenges in the health care system. The focus here is on the implementation of research results in practice, chronic care management, communications and patient education. The role and application of new technologies in physiotherapy are also a focal point of this area. In addition, selected physiotherapeutic treatment approaches will be examined and discussed regarding their current evidence and relevance to practice in the regions of the musculoskeletal system, inner organs and vessels, neurology and geriatrics. The focus area also includes broad professional information on the fields of biometrics and motion analysis.

«I decided to come to Switzerland to further my professional education as it is still early days for the physiotherapy masters programmes in Germany. The course at ZHAW imparts the knowledge to initiate demand-driven care and how to implement it. It also offers me the option of a PhD or a role in a governing body of the healthcare sector.»

Marco Stahn, MSc student in physiotherapy with the focus on professional development