About Physiotherapy Research Society (PRS)


“Empowering physiotherapists to promote and facilitate research”  

The Physiotherapy Research Society was formed to promote research in physiotherapy. 


We encourage high quality research relevant to physiotherapy practice and education and we foster critical awareness throughout the profession. 


Aims of the PRS

The Society promotes research in physiotherapy, so that a firm scientific knowledge base is developed, from which more effective physiotherapy practice may be delivered and patient services enhanced. We encourage high quality research relevant to physiotherapy practice and education and help foster critical awareness throughout the profession.

The Society aims to disseminate the results of research both within the profession and beyond.


Our Missions Statement

The Physiotherapy Research Society promotes an understanding and implementation of research and best evidence, with an aim to develop physiotherapy practice and promote high-quality patient care.


Our Five Year Strategy

We have recently produced our five year strategy, please see the below document for further information.





What we offer

There are a number of other organisations that exist to support research in physiotherapy and related fields - for example, the Allied Health Professions Research Network. However, we are the only CSP affiliated research group that hosts a research conference and has dissemination of research as a prime aim. By providing a platform for novice researchers across a wide range of topics, we enable support networks to be built and valuable national and inter-national links to be established.


Our PRS Annual Conference

Our Annual Spring conference is the main vehicle through which we promote and support research activity.   See our separate conference page for more details.


Why is research important?

Evidence shows that healthcare organisations who are research active have enhanced levels of patient experience (Boaz et al. 2015; Jonker et al. 2020), lower risk-adjusted mortality rates (Ozdemir et al. 2015), and boast better staff recruitment and retention (Rees and Bracewell, 2019) in comparison to organisations who are less actively engaged with research. In addition to the patient and staff related benefits described, positive effects of a strong research culture have been observed at organisational level through improvements in efficiency (Harding et al. 2015).

There is an increased drive at national level through NHS England via the Allied Health Professions’ Research and Innovation Strategy for England (2022) for allied health professionals to be supported in becoming more research active, and the importance of research as one of the four pillars of clinical practice is further highlighted within the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) (2023) standards of proficiency for physiotherapists.

In the PRS, we aim to support our profession as a whole in becoming more research active, through our annual conference, webinars, online resources and engagement with key national and international stakeholders to represent our profession and promote culture and capacity for research.


Allied Health Professions’ Research and Innovation Strategy for England, HEE, 2022. Allied Health Professions’ Research and Innovation Strategy for England | Health Education England (hee.nhs.uk)

Boaz A, Hanney S, Jones T, Soper B. Does the engagement of clinicians and organisations in research improve healthcare performance: A three-stage review. BMJ Open 2015;5.

Harding, K., Lynch, L., Porter, J., & Taylor, N. F. (2016). Organisational benefits of a strong research culture in a health service: a systematic review. Australian Health Review41(1), 45-53.

Health and Care Professions Council (2023) The standards of proficiency for physiotherapists. https://www.hcpc-uk.org/standards/standards-of-proficiency/physiotherapists/

Jonker L, Fisher SJ, Dagnan D. Patients admitted to more research-active hospitals have more confidence in staff and are better informed about their condition and medication: Results from a retrospective cross-sectional study. J Eval Clin Pract 2020;26:203–8.

Ozdemir BA, Karthikesalingam A, Sinha S, Poloniecki JD, Hinchliffe RJ, Thompson MM, et al. Research activity and the association with mortality. PLoS One 2015;10:1–15.

Rees MR, Bracewell M. Academic factors in medical recruitment: Evidence to support improvements in medical recruitment and retention by improving the academic content in medical posts. Postgrad Med J 2019;95:323–7


Our History

We are extremely proud of our history and of the physiotherapists that have worked hard to establish research as a core aspect of physiotherapy practice.

The Physiotherapy Research Society was founded in 1992 by a group of forward-thinking physiotherapists who formed a steering committee led by Dr Cecily J Partridge. Cecily already had a strong involvement in research, having been awarded fellowship by the CSP in 1978, and established the first UK MSc degree in Research Methods for therapists in 1980. Cecily founded two widely respected peer-reviewed journals 'Physiotherapy Practice' in 1983, and 'Physiotherapy Research International' in 1994, and was awarded her PhD in 1985.

The inaugural meeting of the Physiotherapy Research Society (PRS) was held on the 23rd April 1992 at Kings College London, and Dr Cecily Partridge was the first Chair of the organisation. This first meeting of the PRS was attended by 170 physiotherapists from Europe (with the majority based in the UK), who were passionate about engaging in research and promoting research activity amongst the physiotherapy profession. Following the success of this first meeting, the PRS committee to meet on an annual basis to continue to share and promote research.

The PRS is now over 30 years young and still as passionate as ever to promote research amongst the profession, and provide a platform for both new and experienced researchers to share their work, connect, and inspire others. To find out more about our past conferences, please click here.


Keep in touch!

Find Out More