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Many people are searching for a Physiotherapist. Far fewer search for a Kinesiologist. Are you wondering: what is the difference between a Kinesiologist and a Physiotherapist? This is for you. 

What is the difference between a Kinesiologist and a Physiotherapist?

Physiotherapy is a holistic approach to healthcare lead by highly skilled practitioners dedicated to working with people to maximize their ability to move and function throughout their life. Read more at

Kinesiology addresses physiological, mechanical, and psychological mechanisms. Applications of kinesiology to human health include: biomechanics and orthopedics, strength and conditioning, sport psychology, rehabilitation (such as physical and occupational therapy) and sport and exercise/fitness. Read more at

shoulder retraction shown by kinesiologist Ryan Murphy

What is different?

  1. A physiotherapist does 2 years more schooling (6 years compared to 4) and has advanced training in assessment and treatment of musculoskeletal injuries.
  2. A physiotherapist is trained in more passive techniques (needle work, electrical stimulation, etc)
  3. A Kinesiologist usually spends more time with people (6o minute sessions compared to 30 minutes or less with a Physiotherapist)
  4. While a Kinesiologist may be trained in passive techniques (massage, stretching, etc) most focus on active exercise rehabilitation or fitness programming.
  5. Working with a Kinesiologist usually costs less but is unlikely to be covered under insurance.

What is similar?

  1. Both are trained in therapeutic exercises. Either a Kinesiologist or a Physiotherapist will be able to set you up on an exercise program with a rehabilitative focus.
  2. There is a lot of overlap in the education that both practitioners have.

core strength plank with Kinesiologist and personal trainer alyssa

Kinesiologists and Physiotherapists in North Burnaby

Here in North Burnaby we specialize in Kinesiology. We work closely with INSYNC Physiotherapy. I would highly recommend them if you are looking for a physiotherapist.


What is a Kinesiologist

What is the difference between Kinesiology and Human Kinetics

Active Rehabilitation with a Kinesiologistactive-rehab-vs-personal-training

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