Support physiotherapy research:

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The Physiotherapy Research Foundation (PRF) supports the physiotherapy profession by promoting, encouraging and supporting research that advances physiotherapy knowledge and practice.

The PRF aims to:

Boost the careers of new researchers through our seeding grants

Support research in key areas through our tagged grants

Encourage academic excellence through our university prizes

Why support physiotherapy research?


From management of lower back pain to stroke rehabilitation, advances in the treatment of physical conditions are largely informed by research. Clinical trials produce a scientific evidence base which enables practicing physiotherapists to adopt the latest, safest and most effective techniques when providing care and treatment. In order for continual progress and improvement in physiotherapy practice, it’s crucial that physiotherapy research receives ongoing funding and support.

Evidence for the efficacy of physiotherapy also plays a large role when advocating and lobbying for the profession to governments, industry and the general public.

Physiotherapists have been increasingly successful in obtaining grants from National Competitive Grant schemes such as the National Health and Medical Research Council and the Australian Research Council , however there are few grant schemes available specifically for physiotherapy research. As the field of physiotherapy research is established in academia, the PRF is providing much needed support for early career researchers, helping them to make on ongoing contribution to physiotherapy knowledge throughout their careers.            

Our impact

Since its inception in 1998, the PRF has granted over $1 million to physiotherapy researchers. A 2012 review found that 72 per cent of recipients have received further research funding and 74 per cent have gone on to become independent researchers.

“Receipt of PRF funds was critical for the establishment of my research career. It not only enabled me to complete my early research projects, but also provided evidence of success in gaining external funding which was critical for my later applications for research salary support. Many of my subsequent PhD students have received the same benefits.”
PRF Grant recipient survey response in 2012 Physiotherapy Research Review

Let’s fund more research! Contribute to the PRF when renewing your APA membership

APA member donations are the backbone of the PRF. Since 2005, around half of our funding has come from member contributions, making us the only organisation in Australia facilitating physiotherapy research funded by physiotherapists.

The PRF runs two grant programs. Tagged grants fund research in specific areas of physiotherapy at the request of donating organisations or individuals. Our seeding grant program supports early career researchers and is funded almost entirely by APA member contributions.


In 2013, we received over $35,000 in member donations which has helped three early career researchers commence valuable physiotherapy research projects in 2014. Read more about these projects here.

We receive many strong applications for innovative and valuable research projects every year. This year we received 36 seeding grant applications but could fund just three. You can help us fund more research in 2015 by contributing to the PRF when renewing your membership. Simply select the box on the membership form and choose how much you’d like to give.

This is your chance to give back to your profession – it’s the generosity of members like you that makes it possible for the PRF to keep supporting the research that informs physiotherapy practice.