How to Become a Kinesiotherapist

How to Become a Kinesiotherapist

1. Earn a Bachelor's Degree (4 Years)

A kinesiotherapist is required to master the art and science used in exercise therapy, be able to apply practical first aid skills and command a working knowledge of the various conditions that can impair movement.

They study the mechanics of human movement in order to develop and monitor custom exercise programs designed to promote rehabilitation and help the patient regain function.

The Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) confers a four-year bachelor’s degree in exercise science, human performance, kinesiology or another approved major from an accredited training program.

Not only is classroom study required, kinesiotherapy students must perform 1,000 hours of clinical work under the direction of a registered kinesiotherapist (RKT).

Students learn to design and monitor exercise programs that are appropriate to providing the following services:

  • Neurologic care
  • Cardiac rehabilitation
  • Orthopedic care
  • Geriatric care
  • Pediatric care
  • Psychiatric care
  • Fitness and wellness programs
  • Post-rehabilitation programs

The preparation timeline below provides an example kinesiotherapy curriculum:

Grade Level Example Courses
  • General Chemistry I & Lab
  • General Chemistry II & Lab
  • College Algebra & Statistics
  • Introduction to Kinesiology
  • Humanities Requirements
  • Electives
  • Statistics
  • Human Anatomy & Physiology I
  • Human Anatomy & Physiology II
  • Emergency Medical Response
  • Applied Kinesiology
  • Athletic Care & Prevention
  • Humanities Requirements
  • Electives
  • Nutrition for Atheletes
  • Exercise Physiology
  • Lower Body Injury Evaluation
  • Athletic Training Clinical I & II
  • Exercise Testing
  • Upper Body Injury Evaluation
  • Humanities Requirements
  • Electives
  • Health in the US
  • Health Education & Planning
  • Healthcare Management
  • Health Policy
  • Capstone
  • Remaining Requirements & Electives

Find an Accredited Kinesiotherapy Program

2. Become a Registered Kinesiotherapist (RKT)

A kinesiotherapist’s knowledge and skills are validated by passing the Kinesiotherapy Registration Examination for certification.

While it is not required to be eligible for hire, candidates who are registered are typically offered higher salaries and more opportunities.

Exam eligibility requirements include:

  • Must be a graduate of a CAAHEP accredited kinseiotherapy program
  • Must have satisfied core course requirements
  • Must have maintained a minimum GPA balance of 2.5 for core courses
  • Must provide a letter of sponsorship from a registered kinesiotherapist, documenting 1000 hours of clinical experience, minimum The exam is offered bi-annually in January and July, there is a $60 application fee, and a $200 fee for the exam once the applicant is approved.

Learn More About Becoming a Registered Kinesiotherapist