After finishing my undergraduate degree in 2012 I originally said I would never go back to uni. Flash forward to 2018 and I am currently in the midst of my Clinical Masters of Sports Physiotherapy Degree. I have been working within sporting teams for the past 3 years now (mainly with the AFLW WA state program) and wanted to further my knowledge and continue to develop my clinical skills, and so I have taken the plunge and headed back to university.
I love learning new topics, techniques, having my ideas and thoughts challenged on a regular basis and being in an environment with like-minded peers. It’s not all fun and games though, there is a real challenge in returning to student mode when you’ve been out in the ‘real world’ for an extended period of time. There are definitely some luxuries that have to be put on hold, such being able to come home after a day at work and put your feet up and relax, instead its completing readings for the following day, revising on what was learnt that day and/or getting a head start on assignments (so-long watching ‘My Kitchen Rules’).
One of the biggest challenges I have found however, is going from a lifestyle where I was predominately on my feet at work in quite an active job to now spending most of my time sitting at a desk in front of the computer or nose deep in anatomy text books. I’ve noticed little aches and pains in my neck, shoulders, upper and lower back. Now it’s time for me to take my own advice and start putting it into practice. I ensure that every half hour I get up from the desk and take time to move around and stretch (this is also a good time for me to go get a drink of water – I have found that I definitely don’t drink as much while I’m sitting down). I try to change my position regularly when I sit so that I am not holding the one position for a long period of time and avoid those positions that do tend to bring on my pain. I also make sure that I get out and get active every day, whether it be riding my bike to and from uni, going for a swim or run, or going to the gym. Not only do these activities keep me fit, they also keep me sane. I love being able to switch off from study and do something that makes me feel good and takes my mind off the terrifying amount of work that still needs to be done.
Going back to study has definitely been daunting and challenging but it comes with great rewards and I am looking forward to completing the degree and getting back in the work-force as a more rounded and enriched physiotherapist.
Madi is currently available at our Thornlie Clinic on Fridays. To book an appointment with Madi call (08) 9583 5165 or simply book online.