Physiotherapists combine their knowledge, skills and approach to improve a broad range of physical problems associated with different ‘systems’ of the body.

Physical therapy is concerned with identifying and maximising quality of life and movement potential within the spheres of promotion, prevention, treatment/intervention, habilitation and rehabilitation.

Physiotherapy Techniques

By using a number of different approaches and techniques, a physiotherapist can help a person to overcome injury or short-term health problems, or manage long-term disability.

The techniques and approaches that physiotherapists use are wide-ranging and include:

  • Massage and manipulation – using the hands to relieve muscle pain and stiffness and encourage blood flow to an injured part of the body to help recovery;
  • The use of heat, cold, electric current, light and water;
  • Remedial exercise – exercise that takes into account a person’s current level of health and any specific requirements they may have, and
  • Providing support – to help patients manage chronic conditions.

Physiotherapy techniques and approaches can improve a person’s ability to use parts of their body that are affected by a health condition or injury.

For example, arthritis is a chronic condition that causes painful, stiff joints and is often associated with ageing. Physiotherapists can help to keep the joints mobile and strengthen the surrounding muscles.

What to expect

  • The Physiotherapy Department is located at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, Colney Lane, Norwich, NR4 7UY.
  • There are regular bus services to the hospital and buses stop outside the Outpatient Departments.
  • If you come by car, park in one of the Outpatient car parks.
  • Enter the hospital at Outpatients East. You will enter the hospital on Level 2.
  • Wheelchairs  are available just outside Outpatients East and West if you require these, for a returnable deposit of £1
  • On entering the hospital, turn left and take the corridor a short distance to the Therapy department.

Please report to the reception desk on arrival.

We run an ordered appointment system and you should expect to be seen at or very shortly after your appointment time.

If you are kept waiting more than 15 minutes for your appointment, please let one of the reception staff know.

Assessment and Treatment

When you attend the department you will receive a full and comprehensive assessment by a member of our highly skilled team. Questions will be asked by the physiotherapist to allow them to understand your condition, along with general medical questions (Please bring a list of all medication you are on to help us with our assessment).

A thorough physical examination will follow this where a series of tests will be carried out to find the cause of your condition. We do need to be able to see the area that is causing you a problem, so you will probably be asked to undress down to your underwear, (you may bring shorts to wear if you prefer.)

The findings of both the subjective and physical examinations will then be discussed with you and a treatment plan decided.

First appointment

Your first appointment will be an assessment and will last between 40 to 60 minutes.

Any follow up appointments will usually be up to 30 minutes.

Under 15 years

People aged 15 or under will need to be accompanied by an adult. Please note only the next of kin can consent to treatment for a child/young person.

Unable to attend

Please let us know as soon as possible if you are unable to attend your appointment. Appointments are in great demand and we may be able to offer the time to another person.

Missed appointments

If you fail to attend your appointment and do not contact us you will be discharged back to the care of your GP.

If you cancel or fail to attend 2 consecutive appointments you will be discharged.

Pacemaker or spinal stimulator

If you have a pacemaker, spinal stimulator or similar device, please make the staff aware before entering the department. The nature of the machines used in the department may affect the working of your device.


If you require someone to interpret  for you please let us know in advance of your first appointment.

Mobile Phones

The use of mobile phones is not permitted in any part of the hospital. Please switch off your phone before entering the building.


We are continually trying to improve the physiotherapy service and we welcome your comments. You will find a questionnaire in the department and we would be grateful if you will fill one in to let us know how we are doing.