osteopath vs physiotherapist

What is the difference between physiotherapy & osteopathy? How can i choose between a physiotherapist and an osteopath?

Physiotherapy and osteopathy present a lot of similarities at first sight, as they aim to improve mobility, strength, range of movements and relieve from pain (acute or chronic). But osteopaths and physios do have different approaches.

What is Physiotherapy?

Physiotherapist generally uses a large range of diverse techniques depending on the condition to treat (e.g. mobilisation, stretching, massage). 60% of physiotherapy treatments will involve hands on therapy, the rest being a combination of tailored exercises taught to the patient after assessment, for them to be able to improve their condition between sessions. The approach of physiotherapy will also take into consideration your general health and wellbeing and retrain your muscle and joints in order to relieve any painful area.

The different fields of physiotherapy and the pathologies it can treat

Women’s Health Physiotherapy

What is Women’s Health Physiotherapy?

Women’s health physiotherapy focuses on the rehabilitation of conditions related to women, pregnancy and postnatal. It helps with issues such as pelvic pain or back pain during pregnancy, incontinence or prolapse after delivery as well as abdominal separation (or diastasis recti).

It also treats various sexual dysfunction such as painful intercourse, vaginismus or dyspareunia, and later in life can help women who go through menopause and suffer from a weakened pelvic floor (which can result in a vast number of intimate issues like urinary urgencies, lack of sexual sensation or once again prolapse).

Women’s health physiotherapy and pelvic floor rehabilitation are the key to treating and preventing many women’s health issues with non-invasive and pain free methods. 

Paediatric Physiotherapy

What is Paediatric Physiotherapy?

Paediatric physiotherapy can treat babies and children who experience musculoskeletal issues at birth or appearing later like torticollis, flat head or feet deformation, birth traumas and injuries like hip dysplasia or brachial plexus injury, respiratory infections or other conditions that can affect babies such as digestive problems (colic, reflux, constipation).

A paediatric physiotherapist will also work with babies and children suffering from developmental delays like late walking or late crawling, as well as neurological disorders such as cerebral palsy, and will help them reach their full potential with various techniques of mobilisation and exercises to improve their independence and quality of life.

Musculoskeletal MSK Physiotherapy

What is MSK Physiotherapy?

 MSK and orthopaedic physiotherapy  treats issues and injuries related to the musculoskeletal system which includes everything that helps you move: the muscles, nerves, tendons, bones, joints and ligaments. It specialises in the treatment of acute and chronic pain in the back, neck, shoulder, knee, hip (and so on), in the rehabilitation after surgery like hip replacement, knee replacement, shoulder replacement, ACL reconstruction, spinal surgery. At last, MSK physiotherapist in London, can also help with injuries, including lower and upper limb fractures, spinal fracture, leg fracture hand many other conditions.

Neurological Physiotherapy

What is Neuro Physiotherapy?

Neurological physiotherapist helps regain and keep a certain level of autonomy by working on the mobility, range of movement and confidence of patients suffering from neurological conditions. Neurological physiotherapist treats conditions such as multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, stroke, neuromotor issues, muscular dystrophy or palsy.

Sports Physiotherapy

What is Sports Physiotherapy?

Sports physiotherapist treats and prevents injuries specific to sports people and athletes, and addresses both acute and chronic issues such as foot or leg injury, wrist or elbow tendonitis (also known as tennis elbow), shoulder injuries, back injuries, knee injuries and more. Sports physiotherapists not only helps recover from injuries with exercises, stretching and mobilisation techniques but also advises and educates on how to avoid them in the future.

What is Osteopathy?

Osteopathy is more of a hands-on type of therapy, more holistic as well. Osteopathy treatments include 90% of hands-on manipulation such as palpation, massaging and mobilisation. Osteopaths work on the integral structure of the body, seeing it as a whole. they will focus on searching and fixing the underlying causes of your condition instead of only treating the symptoms.

The different fields of Osteopathy

Cranial Osteopathy

What is Cranial Osteopathy?

Cranial osteopathy is a gentle and non-invasive technique that helps trigger the body’s self-healing mechanism to release pain, tension and stress and relieve traumas. It works with gentle massages on different spots of the body, rebalancing it and therefore relieving symptoms.

Cranial osteopathy is proven very efficient in different fields of osteopathy and is widely known for their paediatric treatments for digestive problems, sleeping issues, agitation, birth traumas, respiratory infections, orthopaedic issues, but is also effective on children and adults with injuries, stress, pain and visceral problems.

Women’s Health Osteopathy

What is Women’s Health Osteopathy?

Women’s health osteopathy uses various methods of cranial osteopathy, craniosacral osteopathy, myofascial release, soft tissue manipulation or visceral techniques to treat many conditions in women, related to pregnancy or not: back pain or pelvic pain, coccyx pain, general tension, posture issues, carpal tunnel syndrome, digestive issues, migraines, period pain and irregularities, tiredness and more.

Women’s health Osteopaths have also great result for pregnancy and postnatal care, whether it is to treat specific conditions, prepare for delivery, relieving from the discomfort of pregnancy or help rebalancing after childbirth.

Paediatric Osteopathy

What is Paediatric Osteopathy?

Paediatric osteopathy is highly recommended for newborns, whether they have specific issues or to release the pressure and tension provoked by childbirth. We recommend at least one session of osteopathy after birth, to help rebalance baby’s body and mind, treat mobility restriction and relieve any stress they might be feeling.

Paediatric Osteopathy help with many paediatric issues such as agitation and sleeping disorder, orthopaedic issues (torticollis, flat head, stiff neck), digestive issues (reflux, colic, constipation, breastfeeding difficulties) or respiratory problems (chest infections, repetitive bronchitis or bronchiolitis)

Digestive Osteopathy

What is Digestive Osteopathy?

Digestive osteopathy babies has great impact to improve with digestive issues. By working on the underlying issues and related pain that can manifest elsewhere, as well as combining with adjustments in baby lifestyle and diet.

Digestive Osteopathy is mainly efficient for newborns and babies with digestive issues such as colic, baby reflux, constipation, diarrhoea, or even breastfeeding difficulties.

Combining physiotherapy and osteopathy

Ideally – and that’s the way we work in our practice, combining those two approaches has many benefits and gives our patients the most complete rehabilitation plan, speeding up their recovery process.


We offer all the above types of physiotherapy and osteopath done by our team of specialised physiotherapists and Cranial osteopaths.

For more information about our home visits, and treatment at our clinics in Monument, Clapham and Belgravia call 0207 125 0262