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New Bucks Sports Therapy Students Making An Impact

Revin Campbell Karn is Senior Lecturer at Bucks New University and sent us this reflection on some of the activities of his students. They are clearly embracing life as Sports Therapy Undergraduates and making a big impact in the university.

'It has been a busy time for Sports Therapy at Buckinghamshire New University and its first ever cohort. Having welcomed the first group into second year, with an increase in students into first year, it is an exciting time. For the second year running, a hugely successful Christmas massage event was held; a gift from Sports Therapy to University staff and students, whilst also allowing students to practise their skills, for two Christmas Carole filled days.

The statistics were impressive. In total 282 massages were completed, resulting in just under 127 hours of practice by 35 first years. There were 171 independent massages while some patients were lucky enough to have two students providing massage simultaneously, which resulted in a further 111 massages. Unknown to the students, lecturing staff were delighted to award the top 3 students with prizes and free massages to the students from staff! As yet none have cashed in…….

The two days ran very smoothly with patients pre-booked via our student union and “runners” advertising the event around campus.  Feedback from the patients was fantastic and was invaluable for the students first ever experience of therapy outside of class practicals. All patients completed a feedback form after the massage which could then be used to build students ePortfolio evidence and self-reflection. This experience helps build the students’ skills in patient management and is their introduction to Manual Therapy skills. As the degree develops and students learn more skills and techniques these will also be applied. We start with massage on the programme as the first introduction to developing ‘hands-on’ experience…from here it only gets better.

Students have had a few busy weekends as taping and Intermediate First Aid for Sport (IFAS) courses have recently taken place. They provide a unique opportunity on the programme at Bucks and help prepare the students on their journey to become autonomous practitioners. The IFAS course was run at Buck by the FA as one of the first universities to run such a course outside of the FA HQ St. George’s Park and therefore highlights how Bucks New University is setting the standards in offering unique opportunities for their students. The tutors Andrew Lindley and Geoff Wareing delivered an excellent two days and we are proud to say that we had a 100% pass rate! These students can now start offering trauma management as part of their Sports Therapy ‘toolbox’ of skills. This will be put into practice very soon as the students will be supporting the varsity day at Roehampton University this March. Last year saw the Sports Therapists offer some pre-event support – and Bucks won the event for the first time!

Placements are the hot topic for students and we are happy to facilitate many great partnerships. In addition to students attending Watford FC, Reading Ladies FC and Wycombe Wanderers FC to name but a few we hold weekly Reading Ladies and Wycombe Wanderers massage clinics at the Bucks Sports & Wellbeing Clinic. The brand new state of the art clinic is proving to be very popular on Wednesdays where students run a clinic for the university population and public. Groups such as the Yoga Society have also made the most of it as they recently contracted the students for 2 weeks of therapy. Students have also had the unique opportunity of being part of a Concussion Study where they baseline tested 200 second level school children who participate in sport.

It’s that time of year where students begin to work on dissertation titles and proposal. Bucks are extremely excited about collaborating with Orthopaedic Consultants Mr. Bhupinder Mann and Mr. Gurdeep Biring on a research project to assist students in their dissertations. Three students are also visiting Mr. Mann in March to watch a day of hip and knee surgery. Students can also be seen in their new bespoke Sports Therapy kit – professionalism has reached new heights at Bucks New University.

The second semester is looking just as busy with lots of new experiences ahead for the students; the sky is the limit!'

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