Tim is a Clinical Director and owner of Rehab My Patient exercise prescription software.
My father used to have treatment with an osteopath, and my grandparents were treated, so I was always aware of the benefits that osteopaths had on their health.
I found University was tough, but it was a rewarding experience that gave me some incredible life-skills. It’s hard work, but the more you put in the more you get out. Osteopathy is a scientific medical degree programme, and hence its tougher than other courses, but the skills you get are irreplaceable and you’ll never ever forget them.
My career path
I studied osteopathy first, and got into sport in a major way, starting with the local rugby club, then moving on to elite sprinters, and National weightlifters. I applied for a couple of associate osteopathic jobs but didn’t get accepted, so I ended up starting a small clinic from my parent’s house, using an old felt treatment table that the university sold to me for £30.
I went back to university a few times, re-training as a physio, and then as a non-medical prescriber and injection therapist.
There were many bumps in the road, but I managed to get through them with the vision that I wanted to try to change as many people’s lives as possible in a positive way. Now I am the Clinical Director of Surrey Physio which is a group of clinics with osteopaths and physiotherapists. We work in over 90 locations, with a clinical team of about 40 (around 10 osteopaths). I would estimate we do around 80,000 appts per annum.
Who I work with
We mostly work within the NHS now, although we’ve had our fair share of elite sports experience, being proud to look after a number of the UK’s top sports people. Our team have represented in four Olympic Games. Now our work is more focused towards chronic pain and MSK in the NHS, with my focus on changing systems.
I love treating everyday people, especially those who have tried everything else and ended up with us as a ”last case scenario”. We provide around 5-10% of our work as pro-bono or heavily discounted, and the intention will be one day to operate a free clinic where nobody has to pay, but simply based on donations only. I’m not sure if that’s a very good business idea though!
The best thing to being an osteopath is
The freedom. To travel, to chose your own path, to make life what you want to make it.
If I was not an osteopath, I would never have met my amazing wife Kay Allardyce (also an osteopath) who is an inspiration and teaches me how to relax and how to be a human. She is the best part of my life (and now we have two amazing kids, aged 3 and 5).
My advice to those wanting to study osteopathy…
Just do it.