The Sharp Reality Of Life As A New Grad Physio

Posted By: Andy Barker

The transition from University into the world of work is a tough one.

You no longer have that ‘protected’ student title.

You’re a fully qualified therapist and that changes the level of expectation, workload and pressure to get patient results.

So many New Grad’s I speak to tell me about their big ‘A HA’ moment.

That moment when they realise, they have so much more to learn if they really want to get consistent
positive patient results and THRIVE as a New Grad Physio.

Usually they will refer to a particular experience…

A patient assessment that just didn’t make sense and they couldn’t work out what was going on.

A patient that was not improving, and hand-on treatment techniques were not working.

A patient that they weren’t sure how to progress and what rehab exercise to give them next.

You might have an example of your own.

I certainly had many examples just like these, as a New Grad Physio.

New Grad Physio’s just like you are frustrated with their inability to get the results they want and help their patients in a way they feel they deserve.

You got into this profession to help people and when you are unable to do that to the level you want, it’s tough.

This blog will discuss some important concepts that will help you understand the challenges facing you as a New Grad so you can attack them head on and enjoy a successful start to life as a New Grad Physio.

Nobody Told Us About This…

Having worked with hundreds of New Grad Physio, Sports Therapists and Sports Rehabilitators over the years one of the BIGGEST frustrations that always surfaces is…

Why Did Nobody Tell Us About This???

What you were told life as a New Grad Physio would be like and what is ACTUALLY like seem a million miles part.

It’s nobody’s fault.

You must cram so much knowledge and work into your 3 years of study, alongside your assessments, exams and placements, its an almost impossible task to graduate and be fully prepared for the challenges you will be faced with as a New Grad Physio.

I honestly believe that a therapy degree; physiotherapy, sports therapy or sports rehabilitation could and maybe should be 5 years long.

There is so much you are asked to learn and then try to apply in practice (placements), you and the staff that taught you at University have a thankless task to prepare you for when you do qualify and enter the Real World.

That is why so much importance is placed on your continued learning and development when you do qualify to ensure you continue to make the progress in your learning and career that you really want.

However, that sometimes is hard…

Support? What Support?

Depending what environment you work in post-graduation the level of learning support you receive will vary greatly.

Some environments have protected time set aside for your learning, access to help and mentorship from a senior colleague and the opportunity to ask questions and get the support you need to continue to progress.

Some environments offer very little if anything at all.

Most environments are somewhere in the middle.

The problem?

If you are not getting a HIGH Level Of Support as a New Grad you will NOT progress at the rate you want.

In addition, if you don’t get the RIGHT Support you will NOT progress at the rate you want.

As a New Grad Physio you are at such an important stage of your career.

The first few years can be the making or breaking of your therapy career.
You can really make massive learning steps and career progression towards your ‘dream role.’

But you can also easily waste 3-5 years at the start of your career because you lack clarity about where your career is heading and the specific skill sets you need to learn as a New Grad Physio.

And all because you did NOT get the right level and specific support you needed during those early years.

The BIG New Grad Problem

The biggest problem New Grad’s often have is that they lack focus about the actual problems they need to overcome.

Problems that are specific to the reality of what is happening to you right now and the challenges that are individual to you and the life of a New Grad.

This is why New Grad’s become demotivated and lose the enthusiasm to continue to learn.

With all the best intentions, that textbook, journal article, blog or podcast is NOT specific to the actual problems and challenges you are facing as a New Grad Physio.

So, it doesn’t give you the answers to the problems you have.

That is the primary reason I set up the New Grad Physio Membership.

I myself was frustrated that so many New Grad Physio’s were struggling and there wasn’t anything out there to help them out.

Having been through those very same New Grad challenges myself and knowing exactly what it takes to enjoy a super successful start to life as a New Grad Physio I can deliver content and mentorship that specifically addresses the challenges you face when you transition out of University and into the Real World.

Don’t Waste Your Time & Effort

I know you are motivated to learn, enthusiastic to attain more skills and are willing to put the time and effort in to do that.

How do I know this?

Because you are still reading this blog.

A LOT of New Grad Physio’s will make the right noises, will say that they are passionate about what they do and how much they value their learning and development.


Only a small number will actually do what it takes to fast-track their journey as a New Grad Physio.

Most will NOT be prepared to invest the time and effort into their learning.

It is these therapists that are still ‘stuck’ 5 years after graduating in the same roles, on the same pay, having not really progressed as a therapist and are having the same problems in their day-day practice they were when they first graduated.

On the flip side…

Other New Grad’s make a conscious decision to prioritise their learning and development.

They are willing to invest some of their time and efforts to becoming a better therapist.

They are motivated to learn.

They seek the right help and support.

It is these therapists that make big strides in their learning and career progress as a New Grad Physio.

It is these therapists that THRIVE and not just SURVIVE in life as a New Grad Physio.

Thanks for reading and here’s to your own successful New Grad journey
PS. If you want to learn more about how I can help you fast-track your own New Grad journey, teach you the specific skill sets you need to know to accelerate your learning and career then you need to check out