Senior Physio Programme

About the Programme

Senior Physio Programme

It’s my intention that we develop our physio team into being the best physio team out there. Surrey Physio is already recognised throughout South England and London as being a leading physiotherapy clinic (group), and we do have an excellent reputation amongst GPs, consultants, and the public.

But it's not enough.

We will make our physios the best out there.
Surrey Physio has never been in a stronger position. We have stable premises, a great team and a great admin team, so we are only going to move onwards and upwards.

The Plan:
  • To increase staff training.
  • To encourage more shadowing and learning from each other.
  • To promote some of our physios to senior physios and then lead physios.
  • Improve team cohesiveness.

The Senior Physio Programme

We have instigated a Senior Physio Award programme for our physiotherapists. To qualify for the Senior Physio award, they will need to have:

  • At least two years' post-qualification experience.
  • AACP qualified acupuncture.
  • Sports Massage/Osteopathic techniques/Pilates training.
  • Demonstrated leadership skills.
  • Demonstrated a higher level of clinical skills.
  • Demonstrate a willingness to promote the clinic and their own success within Surrey Physio.

Once a physio expresses an interest in becoming a Senior/Lead physio, we work out a specific development plan with them. There are four key competencies they should aim to complete:

    Reflective Practitioner

They will need to do a practice development plan and SWOT analysis to highlight which areas they need to work on. One of the key roles of being a Senior physiotherapist is that they must be a reflective practitioner, capable of taking feedback, and looking at their own development to work out ways to improve their own ability.
In addition, they should record a significant event that has occurred in their practice, and also complete a reflective case study. As physios we spend a lot of time on our own with patients. So senior physios must be capable of looking at what has gone right, and what has gone wrong, and learning from those experiences.

    Advanced Clinical Experience

They will need to demonstrate that they have some good clinical skills. Are they confident treating all ranges of conditions and patients? Can they cope with chronic patients? Can they treat complicated spinal problems? Unless they have good clinical experience, they won't be able to train others in their skills and knowledge.

They should do:

  • At least one day’s workshop in osteopathic technique.
  • Be AACP acupuncture qualified.
  • Have a qualification in either sports taping, sports massage, or Pilates.

The company will help out towards the cost of some or all of the courses on a case-per-case basis.

In addition, they should:

  • Demonstrate shadowing of a Lead Physio/Senior Physio.
  • Have the opportunity to be observed in clinic by a Lead Physio/Senior Physio.

Team Player and Communicator

Are they a team player? How can they demonstrate that? Perhaps they have helped organise some CPD, or done some training with the junior members of the team? Perhaps they have arranged a social event, or spent some time providing assistance to a new member of the team.
Can they demonstrate that they work well with the admin team, keeping in regular contact and working towards common goals?
Also, can they show that they can work with an Inter-disciplinary team, for example demonstrating referral to consultants, MRI scans and colleagues?
Also, are they able to show that they have done some supporting/training for newer members of the team?


A good physio is a popular physio, capable of giving such a great service that patients want to come back to see them. As physios, we work out a treatment plan for our patients, and we see them through a course of treatment. When they have finished treatment, they are so pleased with their programme that they recommend our services or provide testimonials.


At some point during the programme, physios will need to sit a written and/or clinical exam.
They will be given a mock exam so they know what to expect and also some reading material. But most of the questions will be “things they should know” as an advanced practitioner. They might include anatomy, technique demonstration, or clinical management. The questions will all cover the four competencies. It is envisaged the exam will last one hour and be done under the supervision of the practice manager.

Checklist to becoming a Senior Physio




    1. Reflective Practitioner

SWOT Analysis




Significant Event Analysis


Reflective Case Study

    2. Advanced Clinical Experience

Osteopathic technique course


Sports Massage/Pilates/Sports Taping


AACP acupuncture


Evidence of treating chronic patients


Evidence of treating acute patients


Shadowing a Senior Physio


Being shadowed by a Lead/Senior Physio

    3. Team Player

Organising some CPD?


Supporting Juniors


Demonstrate referral to other colleagues


In regular communication with admin team

    4. Promoter

What have they done to help develop the clinic?


Demonstrate they can offer a great service to patients.



Complete a written/clinical exam.


Tim Allardyce