Trevor Kwolek Sports Physiotherapist is doing manual therapy on a Welland Jackfish baseball player beside the dugout

In the dynamic world of sports, injuries are an inevitable part of the game. Athletes, from amateurs to professionals, rely on a specialized branch of healthcare professionals to keep them in top form: sports physiotherapists. In Canada, these practitioners are held to the highest standards, requiring rigorous training and certification to ensure athletes receive the best possible care.

Sports physiotherapists earn recognition through completing the Diploma in Sports Physiotherapy offered by Sport Physiotherapy Canada (SPC), a division of the Canadian Physiotherapy Association. In Canada, a considerable number of physiotherapists, exceeding 350, have attained the Certificate level in Sports Physiotherapy, while over 250 have completed the Diploma. This credential serves as a hallmark of excellence, signifying extensive education and expertise tailored to the unique needs of athletes across all levels of competition.

Diploma holders, such as Great North Physiotherapy's Sports Physiotherapist, Trevor Kwolek, are also eligible to roster as a Registered International Sports Physical Therapist (RISPT) approved by the International Federation of Sports Physical Therapists (IFSPT). While RISPT status does not license a therapist in other countries, it does notify that the individual has achieved the highest level of qualification in their country; as of February 2024, there are only 125 therapists recognized by the IFSPT in Canada (including Kwolek).

The journey to becoming a certified sports physiotherapist is no easy feat. It involves a comprehensive curriculum covering essential areas such as athletic taping, emergency care, concussion management, protective equipment utilization, and personalized exercise prescription strategies. This specialized education equips physiotherapists with the tools and knowledge necessary to address the multifaceted challenges of sports-related injuries.

Once certified, sports physiotherapists can work with athletes in various capacities, including daily training sessions, competitive events such as world championships and the Olympic Games, and other high-performance settings. Their expertise extends beyond injury treatment to injury prevention, rehabilitation, and performance optimization, making them indispensable sports medicine team members.

Sports physiotherapy in Canada represents a pinnacle of excellence in healthcare for athletes. Through rigorous certification processes and specialized training, certified sports physiotherapists stand ready to support athletes in achieving their full potential and staying at the top of their game.

How do you confirm if your therapist is an SPC Credential holder? Click here for more details.

Looking for a Registered International Sports Physical Therapist (RISPT)? Click here for more information.

Interested in learning more? Contact Great North Physiotherapy to book an appointment with Trevor Kwolek. Book online at or call 905-467-1440 to speak with a team member.


1. Registered International Sports Physical therapist. (n.d.). Sport Physiotherapy Canada.
2. Registered International Sports Physical Therapists – IFSPT. (n.d.).
3. For the Public - Canadian Physiotherapy Association. (2024, January 26). Canadian Physiotherapy Association.

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