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Aeronautical Engineer to Osteopath to Rising Star

Barney Polden graduated from The College of Osteopaths in 2017 with a first-class degree and was nominated by the College for the Institute of Osteopathy’s (iO) Rising Star Award.  Barney was absolutely representative of the fact that hard work, organisation and determination can get you through.  Our students on our part-time degree often have to work full-time all the way to year 5.  Read on and find out a bit more about one of our latest graduates and his achievements.


From Extreme Sports to Osteopathic Health

Whilst completing his degree at the College, Barney continued to serve with the Royal Air Force, working as a professionally Chartered Aircraft Systems Engineer (CEng), having previously gained a Master’s Degree in Aeronautical Engineering.  Barney has a passion and interest in health and fitness with a background in Military Fitness, competitive and extreme sports (water-polo, snowboarding, windsurfing, kitesurfing) and loves taking part in endurance events for charity. Taking part in such events is not without risk and his knowledge, appreciation and interest in the musculo-skeletal system and manual therapy have grown due to many of his own significant injuries over the years.

In 2012 Barney decided to study at the College of Osteopaths. The part-time structure which continues for the entire length of the five-year course allows students to continue to work fulltime if necessary. This was a key factor in Barney’s decision to study at the College of Osteopaths as he wished to continue his Service with the RAF.  The course is listed with ELCAS which enabled Barney to access some funding towards the fees.


Juggling Act

Life does not stand still when one embarks on such a journey and in 2013, Barney’s daughter was born. Having a supportive and caring wife helped to keep Barney focussed on both work and study. Juggling all these elements of life can be challenging but ultimately very rewarding.

In Barney’s words “… I am so proud to have gained a first-class degree in Osteopathy and honoured to have received the Rising Star award from the Institute of Osteopathy. I am so appreciative of all the support and tuition that I have received from all the tutors, clinicians and staff. I have met so many lovely and interesting people at the College, which I believe reflects the good nature of everyone who decides to get involved with osteopathy. The Rising Star Award has renewed my commitment and passion for continuing to learn and develop my skills to be the best osteopath I can be…”.


The Future

Barney still has four years of Service until he retires from the Royal Air Force but, after meeting the Principal and Immediate Past President of the Institute of Osteopathy, Robin Lansman, at the iO Convention 2017, he has found an opportunity to start working part-time at the Body Back-Up (http://www.bodybackup.co.uk/) clinic in Maidenhead.

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