CSP facts and figures

Find out more about physiotherapy and the CSP, including our demographic profile of 65,000 members

The CSP acts as the professional, educational and trade union body for 65,000 chartered physiotherapists, physio students and physiotherapy support workers.

Founded by four nurses in 1894, the CSP was awarded its Royal Charter in 1920 and has become the profession's leading membership organisation in the UK. 

CSP members as 100 people



If our current membership was represented as 100 people:

  • 80 would be female
  • 20 would be male

Of those:

  • 70 would work in the NHS
  • 11 would work in private practice
  • 10 would be students
  • 4 would be physiotherapy support workers
  • 6 would be overseas trained
  • 6 would be non-practicing
  • 3 would be retired
  • and less than 2 would work overseas

What is physiotherapy?

The term physiotherapy encompasses a range of interventions, services and advice aimed at maintaining, restoring and improving people's function and movement and thereby maximising the quality of their lives. 

See our what is physiotherapy page for more information on conditions that physiotherapists treat. We have also produced several public information leaflets on a range of conditions.

Access to treatment

Physiotherapy may form part of treatment during or following a stay in hospital. You may also be referred for physiotherapy by your GP. In some areas, you may be able to obtain physiotherapy services without a referral from your doctor. If this is possible in your area, details will be available at your GP surgery, or via your local NHS physiotherapy department.

You can also seek the services of a private physiotherapist without a referral: please see our physio2u directory listing for details of local private physiotherapists. You may also wish to see further information on access options to physiotherapy treatment.


Inevitably, pay is an important issue for our members: see the pay and conditions section within Union Support for more on this.

Physiotherapy careers

For information on requirements for becoming a physiotherapist, and further details on careers and learning, see our career opportunities page.

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