When trying to decide on a potential career, the time it takes to train can be a key deciding factor. After all, some careers (particularly those in healthcare) can take years of study, followed by a lifetime of ongoing professional development. To help make the decision a little easier, we discuss how long it takes to train as a Podiatrist via the different study routes, entry requirements, further training, and potential salaries.
So, how long does it take to train as a Podiatrist? It takes between 2 - 4.5 years to train as a Podiatrist in the UK. The minimum training required to become a Podiatrist is a bachelor’s in Podiatry, which takes at least 3 years. Alternatively, 2-year master’s degrees can be taken, as well as 4+year part-time courses.
Read on to learn more about how to become a Podiatrist in the UK.
How Long Does it Take to Become a Podiatrist in the UK?
It typically takes between 2-3 years of full time study, or 4.5 years of part time study to become a Podiatrist in the UK. This is either via an approved 3-year (full time) bachelor's degree, or via a 2-year (full time) master’s degree in Podiatry (this would equal a minimum of 5 years of degree study when factoring in a previous bachelor’s degree).
Alternatively, individuals can study a degree apprenticeship, which can take between 2 - 4.5 years, depending on the specific course, and whether full or part time study is chosen.
Once an individual has completed an approved course of study, they would then need to register with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) before they can start practising.
What Training Does a Podiatrist Have?
Podiatrists are trained to a minimum level of a bachelor’s degree, but many are educated to master’s degree level due to their chosen route into the industry. Many courses are split between formal learning (either with tutors or as individual study time), and practical learning on placement.
Podiatry students typically learn a wide range of Podiatry topics, from Clinical Podiatry, Medicine, Anatomy and Physiology, to specific Podiatric theory, contraindications and high-risk scenarios, and Principles of Contemporary Practice.
Are Podiatrists Doctors?
Podiatrists are not Doctors in the classic sense; they do not have an MD. However, Podiatrists graduate with the title DPM - Doctor of Podiatric Medicine. Just because they are not Medical Doctors does not mean that they are not qualified to treat patients. In fact, they will have more specialist knowledge, skills, and experience in Podiatry than a Medical Doctor.
How to Become a Podiatrist in the UK
To become a Podiatrist in the UK, individuals must achieve a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in Podiatry. Entry requirements for such courses typically include:
- 5 GCSEs at A-C including English, Maths and Science (or equivalent)
- 3 A Levels including Biological Science (or equivalent)
- A science-based access course
- A previous degree, or a full practising qualification in a related subject
- DBS check
Alternatively, a master’s degree in Podiatry can be taken. Entry requirements may include:
- A bachelor’s degree in Podiatry or other relevant subject
- Registration with the HCPC or equivalent authority in another country
- DBS and occupational health clearances
- Minimum level of English if it not a candidate's first language
For degree apprenticeships, entry requirements may include:
- GCSEs in Maths, English, and a Science subject at C or above (or equivalent)
- 3 A Levels (or equivalent)
- Enhanced DBS check
Once qualified, individuals will then need to register with the HCPC before being able to legally practise, and must complete regular CPD in order to maintain their registration.
If you're not yet sure what healthcare profession you want to enter, we have a number of blogs talking about how to get into different professions; take a look at What Qualifications Do You Need to Become a Chiropractor in the UK?, What Qualifications Do You Need to Become a Physiotherapist?, Can You Become a Nurse Without Going to University?, and How to Train as an Acupuncturist to learn more.
Further Training for Podiatrists in the UK
Once qualified, individuals can choose to work in the NHS, community health trusts, or in the private sector. They can also choose to specialise in musculoskeletal care, orthotics, diabetes and high risk patients, or Podiatric surgery. This can be achieved via formal educational courses, such as master’s degrees or other qualifications, or via CPD.
Examples of potential further training for Podiatrists include:
- MSc in Podiatry (if not already completed)
- Podiatric surgery qualifications
- Long-term conditions
- Injection therapy for the foot and ankle
- Clinical investigations and diagnostics
Alternative to the formal educational courses suggested above, Podiatrists can further their development via CPD. This may also include some degree of education in a formal setting, but can also include practical and work-based training, webinars and seminars, group discussions, individual study (e.g. reading relevant journals), and research, among other activities.
How Much Do Podiatrists Earn in the UK?
After multiple years of study, Podiatrists can expect to earn between £25,655 and around £110,000 within the NHS, depending on their career level:
- Band 5 (entry-level) - £25,000-31,534
- Band 6 (specialist-level) - £32,306-£39,027
- Band 7 (team-leaders and advanced-level) - £40,057-£45,839
- Band 8 (consultant-level or specialist registrars) - £47,126 to £90,387
- Band 9 (consultant Podiatric Surgeons) - up to £108,075
A private practice Podiatry salary can be significantly more, with entry-level Podiatrists typically earning between £20,000 and £50,000, although this can significantly increase if individuals rent a chair in a successful practice (£50,000-£250,000). Experienced owners of successful private practices can go on to earn anything from £150,000 to £1,000,000.
CPD Courses for Podiatrists at Breeze Academy
At Breeze Academy we offer a number of CPD courses for healthcare professionals, including Acupuncture and Dry Needling, Sports Massage Training, and Clinical Yoga Teacher Training. Our courses provide students with everything they need to develop new skills and safely integrate them into their practice.
Take a look at our courses online today, or get in touch with us for more information.