What is the real difference between “Krankengymnastik”
They are simply different terms for
the same thing.
In other countries the job description “Physiotherapist”
has been common for years. It was only in Germany
that the job description of a “Krankengymnast”
was determined by the law. This changed in 1994, when the
“law about the physiotherapy profession” was
“Krankengymnasten” are now called
“Physiotherapists” so what they do is called
This should not be confused with the term
“Physical Therapy” (N.B. In the USA a Physical
Therapist is a Krankengymnast) which is a passive therapy,
such as the application of ice, heat or electronic therapy.
Physiotherapy includes the examination, analysis
of findings, determination of treatment aims and priorities,
and the choice of the treatment plan.
The aim is to maintain, recover or enhance physical (and
psychological) functions or the training of alternative
functions in case of irreparable damage.
Thus in Germany we have the
(=”Krankengymnast”) who practices Physiotherapy
that includes giving massages and applying physical therapy.
The Masseuse who gives massages,
applies physical therapy or kinetotherapy.
To be a qualified Physiotherapist you must
undertake three years of training and education at either
a private or national school and then pass a final examen.
In these three years one acquires only the basic skills,
which means that it is essential to specialize after schooling.
The treatment of a patient
with high quality and efficiency requires a great wealth
and continuous advanced training.
What is Physiotherapy?
“Physiotherapy is a health care profession
concerned with human function and movement
and maximising potential:
It uses physical approaches to promote, maintain and restore
physical, psychological and social well-beeing, taking account
of variations in health status.
I t is science-based, committed to extending, applying,
evaluating and reviewing the evidence that underpins and
informs it practice and delivery the exercise of clinical
judgement and information is at its core”
(definition taken from the Chartered Society of
The primary objective
of Physiotherapy is: