“I was told I wasn't smart enough, but there are avenues into becoming a therapist”

Shane Mooney on what he needed to become an orthopedic therapist —  an interest and a willingness to learn
“I was told I wasn't smart enough, but there are avenues into becoming a therapist”

INCOT graduate Shane Mooney and Dr. Neil Sheehan at the International College of Orthopaedic Therapy, Exchange House, Main Street, Ballincollig, Co Cork. Picture Dan Linehan

Through playing sports, physiotherapist Shane Mooney acquired many injuries. His time spent with those helping him heal sparked an interest in him that he thought he would never be able to achieve.

 “Most people in school would have said that I wouldn’t have gotten the points, but when I went to my local physiotherapist he told me about the International College of Orthopaedic Therapy (INCOT).” 

 INCOT graduate Shane Mooney at the International College of Orthopaedic Therapy, Exchange House, Main Street, Ballincollig, Co Cork. Pictures: Dan Linehan
INCOT graduate Shane Mooney at the International College of Orthopaedic Therapy, Exchange House, Main Street, Ballincollig, Co Cork. Pictures: Dan Linehan

After years of working as a barman, Shane took the plunge and spent four years pursuing his dream, studying orthopaedic therapy.

 “I had only done junior cert Biology, but INCOT takes it from scratch. There’s no need to be afraid of not being an expert in anatomy, all you need is an interest and a willingness to learn.” 

 The International College of Orthopaedic Therapy, Exchange House, Main Street, Ballincollig, Co Cork. 
The International College of Orthopaedic Therapy, Exchange House, Main Street, Ballincollig, Co Cork. 

But the course gave Shane more than just credentials to get a job, it gave him the opportunity to apply for registration with CORU. He now owns and runs two clinics, named Back on Track. “It has changed my life,” Shane said.

As well as being his own boss, Shane was also hired by INCOT to return to teach current orthopaedic therapy students.

Shane’s experience in INCOT has been a positive one: “I was told I wouldn’t be able to do it in school, they tell you're just not smart enough but there are avenues to it. My experience of it is don’t listen to anyone if you want to do something you can do it.”

Benefits of attending INCOT

You don’t need an 'A' in history to be accepted into INCOT. 

“We have looked at the Irish education system and there are flaws in it. We want people who are motivated and genuinely interested to give them the opportunity to fulfil their dream and vocation of becoming a therapist,” said Dr Neil Sheehan, chartered physiotherapist and INCOT lecturer. 

 Dr  Neil Sheehan at the International College of Orthopaedic Therapy, Exchange House, Main Street, Ballincollig, Co Cork.
Dr  Neil Sheehan at the International College of Orthopaedic Therapy, Exchange House, Main Street, Ballincollig, Co Cork.

But that’s not all, INCOT tutors are practising therapists and each is qualified to teach. The fees and entry requirement are accessible. Along with this INCOT pride itself on being ahead of the game and taking a blended learning approach to allow for those who are working to progress themselves, without having to leave their jobs, there are also lots of courses to choose from. 

“We need to adapt to be able to provide people with the training that will suit them,” said Dr Sheehan.  

INCOT also have courses accredited by NUMSS, ITEC and FHT. BSc and HDip graduates can apply for membership of the Register of Orthopaedic and Soft Tissue Therapists of Ireland (ROSTI), Irelands only independent, voluntary and self-regulating representative body for Orthopaedic Therapists. ROSTI members are approved by VHI Healthcare, Laya Healthcare and Aviva Healthcare. 

“Our therapists are looked upon very favourably by the public,” said Dr Sheehan. “A lot of therapists from other colleges have to go through an application process whereas ours are automatically approved by ROSTI,” he added.

Furthermore, qualifications from INCOT are internationally recognised. The most up-to-date techniques are taught, and practical clinical experience is included. 

The practical work involving examination and the treatment of an injury is still done practically,  but in a pod situation to adhere to HSE guidelines. 

 “From the very start, students will be learning to work as a therapist in a safe manner with the public.” 

 The International College of Orthopaedic Therapy, Exchange House, Main Street, Ballincollig, Co Cork. 
The International College of Orthopaedic Therapy, Exchange House, Main Street, Ballincollig, Co Cork. 

Jobs

The pandemic brought with it much hardship but it also spurred people on to exercise and it shifted people’s focus to fitness.

 “Naturally something is going to be overtaxed. Orthopaedic therapy deals with anything like that. Any person who is involved in sport or activity, it’s inevitable that at some stage someone will need therapy.”

With exercise as well as people sitting all day working from home, it’s a recipe for therapists.

 “If they go to a doctor with a joint problem or having pulled a muscle, who better to treat it. Therapists are getting busier and are going back to work,” said Dr Sheehan. 

That growing interest in physical therapy, alongside its correlation with wellbeing and reducing stress and anxiety, means that the work won’t run out.

If you aspire to empower, promote independence and improve the quality of life for people of all ages and abilities, INCOT could be the place for you.

For more information 

  • Visit www.incot.ie
  • Email: incotcork@gmail.com 
  • Call: 021 2417762 Mobile 086 661 3997

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