Top Contributor Oct 2023 | Paola Marturano

We are thrilled to announce that Paola Marturano is our Top Contributor for the month of October, and it’s easy to see why! Her dedication, kindness, and ever-present smile make working with her an absolute pleasure.  Paola is part of the Translation Team with Plus and has translated over 240 courses to Italian so far.  These 240 courses support 899 learning activities logged by Italian speakers, which is impressive! Paola is also part of the team reviewing courses and assigning them to other translators.  This workflow has had an important impact on the team’s results. Congratulations, Paola! You are a shining example of what it means to be a Top Contributor, and we are fortunate to have you on our team.

Your name: Paola Marturano

Time active with Physiopedia: One year and four months.

Current role with Physiopedia: Italian translator with the Plus Translation Team.

Where did you go to university/college? BSc in Physiotherapy at the University of Rome, MSc in Sports Physiotherapy at the University of Pisa, MSc in Strength and Conditioning at the University of East London. 

Where do you work? I used to live and work in Italy and in the United Kingdom as a clinical and sports physiotherapist. Now I’ve been living in Cuba, and I’ve been working remotely for 3 years on a personal project and with Physiopedia, but I’m going to relocate back to Europe in 3 months.

Describe your role: I’m a clinical physiotherapist, specialising in musculoskeletal (MSK) conditions and sports injuries and a certified NSCA Strength and Conditioning Specialist. I’m also a certified PN Nutrition Coach.  I like to consider myself a “Health Coach” since I love educating and coaching patients and people holistically. I try to have a positive impact on people’s lives by improving their quality of life, making them change unhealthy lifestyle habits into something more sustainable and giving them advice for the long term, in order for them to have a balanced and happy life.     

What is the most rewarding part of being a physiotherapist? As a physiotherapist, the most rewarding part of my job is the impact that we can potentially have in people’s lives, not only from the standpoint of a resolution of pain and, therefore an improvement in their quality of life, but also the education that we can provide to them and therefore the power we have to make them and the world a little happier.  As a translator with Physiopedia, the most rewarding aspects of this job include the fact that I’m learning as I work and that we are allowing Italian speakers to access courses developed by internationally renowned instructors. We are helping to update and enhance the physiotherapist profession in Italian-speaking countries, which in turn could have a positive impact on patient care. Last but not least, working with this incredible international team is amazing and exciting!

What are some of the more challenging aspects of being a physiotherapist?  As a physiotherapist, I believe that the hardest part is getting the patient’s buy-in and compliance, especially when there is a need for lifestyle changes and long-term programmes, and also having to break common myths and beliefs inherent in society daily, such as that a massage or a manipulation can solve a person’s pain or injury or that our judgement is less valuable than the one from a doctor. Besides that, I think that keeping up with the ever-changing and evolving research is another big challenge for any medical profession, but for physiotherapists (and many other professions), there is Physiopedia! As a translator, the most challenging times are when I bump into an English word which doesn’t have its equivalent in Italian and have to make the decision whether to leave the word in English or find the right word or description in Italian. 

What are some of your professional passions? I love sports and everything related to it. I’m passionate about and, at the same time, scared of biomechanics and its complexity. I’m fascinated by the human body and the way it works. I’d like to know everything and to be able to explain everything, but I also think that the beauty of the human body is also that we don’t, and we’ll never know or be able to explain everything.

What are a few of your personal passions? As I said before, I love sports, especially outdoor and water sports, but I also love working out in the gym by myself while listening to music. I love listening to and dancing Latin music, especially reggaeton. I love cooking and baking. I love travelling the world and getting to know different cultures with my backpack on, which I hope to resume doing when my 1-year-old little girl is just a little bit older. I love being in nature and spending quality time with my family, friends and dogs.

What would be your advice to a newly graduating physiotherapist? You’ll always feel like you don’t know enough or can’t do enough, and that’s okay. Know the basics and the fundamentals, but think outside the box and beyond the books.  Most of the time, people, their lives, and their stories are complicated, as are their injuries.  Take a holistic approach to the whole person, not just considering the injury or the problem they are coming to see you with or reporting you, but look at the whole picture.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years? Honestly, I’ve stopped making long-term plans or reflections since I realised that life is unpredictable and everything can change at any moment! Instead, how I hope to see myself in 5 years: happy, healthy, fulfilled and surrounded by happy, healthy and fulfilled family and friends wherever I’ll be and whatever I’ll be doing!

What are the best things about being a Physiopedia volunteer? Learning something new daily, working with people from all over the world and being part of an organization with a profound and meaningful purpose and mission.

How has being a Physiopedia volunteer helped your professional development/career progression? I can say for sure that I’ve been learning a lot more about things I already knew something, or a lot about, and gained new knowledge about topics or fields I didn’t know much about. Which ultimately, is helping me in my professional and personal experiences.

What are your hopes and aspirations for Physiopedia? I hope it will continue to do what it is already doing, really! And that it will continue to grow both in terms of the number of renowned instructors taking courses and in terms of accreditations worldwide. In particular, I hope it will get accreditation in Italy, but the Italian bureaucracy, you know, takes its time 🙂

What is your favourite Plus course?  This is a tough one! I loved many courses, but I think Pam Versfeld’s Paediatrics courses and Ibukun Afolabi’s Women’s Pelvic Health courses have a special place in my heart, firstly because they are great instructors who developed awesome courses on topics I didn’t know much about before, and secondly because I’ve just had my little girl less than a year ago so these courses arrived just at the right time for me personally!

Anything else you would like to share? I’m very grateful for being part of this team and participating in this amazing project and mission!