What to expect from your first physiotherapy appointment

What to expect from your first physiotherapy appointment

If you’re new to physiotherapy, you might be wondering what to expect from your first appointment. The first session is typically the most important one, as it provides the opportunity for your physiotherapist to evaluate your condition and determine a course of treatment. Here’s a brief overview of what to expect during your first physiotherapy appointment.

Subjective Assessment 

At the beginning of your appointment, your physiotherapist will ask you about your medical history, including any previous injuries, surgeries, or medical conditions. They will also ask you about your current symptoms, such as pain or discomfort, and how long you have been experiencing them. It’s important to be as honest and thorough as possible, as this information will help your physiotherapist to better understand your condition and develop an appropriate treatment plan.

Physical Examination

After the subjective assessment, your physiotherapist will perform a physical examination to assess your range of motion, strength, and flexibility. This may involve asking you to perform certain movements or exercises, such as bending or lifting, to evaluate your condition. They may also use special tools, such as a goniometer, to measure your joint angles and range of motion. You may be asked to undress to give the physiotherapist all the information needed.

Diagnosis and Treatment Plan

Based on the results of your subjective assessment and physical examination, your physiotherapist will provide a diagnosis and develop a treatment plan. This may involve a combination of exercises, manual therapy, and other techniques to help alleviate your symptoms and improve your overall function. They will also discuss your goals for treatment, such as reducing pain, improving mobility, or returning to your usual activities.


During your appointment, your physiotherapist will also educate you about your condition and provide advice on how to manage your symptoms. This may include advice on exercises you can do at home, modifications to your daily activities, or information on how to prevent future injuries. It’s important to follow your physiotherapist’s advice and stay committed to your treatment plan, as this will help you to achieve the best possible outcomes.

In summary, your first physiotherapy appointment will involve a thorough assessment of your condition, including a subjective history taking and physical examination. Your physiotherapist will use this information to develop a personalized treatment plan and provide advice on how to manage your symptoms. By working closely with your physiotherapist and following their advice, you can make significant progress towards improving your physical function and overall wellbeing.