Inspirational Story

Emelie Anekwu

Who am I? Emelie Anekwu

What do I do?  Senior Physiotherapist – Pelvic Health

What did I study at University? 

I studied Physiotherapy at the University of Nigeria and qualified in 2007.

Later I went for a Masters in Orthopaedic Rehabilitation in Nigeria, and completed additional continuous professional development and some mentorship programmes that enabled me to work in the specialist role of pelvic health physiotherapy.


What prompted you to study Physiotherapy?

I was always interested in helping people and I wanted a career that involved close contact and interaction with service users.


What have you learnt since studying to be a Physiotherapist?

I have learnt that movement is an essence of life without which we wither faster. Physiotherapy has given me the opportunity to improve first on myself and then on the life of everyone that come across me.

I have learnt that the area of Pelvic Health needs to be explored more and there are lots to be achieved with that.

Good communication skills and emotional intelligence are important.

In my role it is important to make sure the patient is relaxed and comfortable so good psychosocial interactions are a big part of my role.

I was always interested in helping people and I wanted a career that involved close contact and interaction with service users

How have you got to the position you are in now?

I became interested in pelvic health, especially as it relates to women, following my rotation in the labour ward and assisting midwives during delivery (Physiotherapy education in Nigeria requires that you must complete a rotation (posting) in pelvic/women’s health).

I got in contact with service users who had some MSK challenges following childbirth i.e Pubic symphysis diastasis, obstetric palsy; this led to my choice of seminar topic on the prevalence of pubic symphysis diastasis postpartum.

Post qualification as a physiotherapist, I worked in some other popular areas of physiotherapy such as MSK and Orthopaedics which I found very interesting.

I was still interested in the area of Pelvic Physiotherapy (although there was an evident lack of personnel in the area) and my hunger to carve a niche for myself saw me going back to the specialism of Pelvic Health Physiotherapy. This gave me the opportunity to help humanity as it has always been my passion and also in addition to helping women with conditions following delivery and other causes including incontinence, pelvic pain and so on.


What made you want to work in the UK?

I am currently working in the UK because I wanted a new challenge in a completely different environment and setting.

The principles of physiotherapy practice are evidently the same but cultural differences, health literacy, access to healthcare and so many other factors can change the delivery. Therefore, I will say the practice is different and requires some form of exposure and enhancement to fit in properly; this requires some training and updates.

I find my job very fulfilling and I look forward to everyday at work.


Want to learn more about the role of a physiotherapist? Where they work? The different specialties? How you might train to be one too?

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