Cathal Brady dreamt of being a professional soccer player during his early years. He got pretty close to achieving his dreams too, spending 11 years as a semi-professional player in the League of Ireland.
Understanding that his career wasn’t going to belong fully on the pitch, Cathal found a way to stay involved in sports by becoming a sports therapist.
He has drawn on his experience of playing soccer at a high level throughout his career working as a lecturer, opening his own private clinic and working for elite professional teams.
“I wanted to be involved in sport as much as I could and an occupation that allowed me to be involved with sport as a career. I knew that from a very early age that was what I wanted to do, you’re talking 13/14 that I knew my career was going to be in sport in some shape or form.
I played League of Ireland for 11 seasons…it was high level in a semi-professional capacity…I looked at myself as a semi-pro because I always worked while I was playing.
Playing at the level of sport, in soccer, it not only opened some avenues and that sort of stuff in the soccer side of things, it also opened in GAA and that because people knew I played at a high level…that helped with me having the ability to relate with clients a little bit more. I was in their position, I knew what they were going through, I knew what they wanted to do.”
Cathal could relate to sports people very easily. He also relates to Portobello Institute students very easily, as he was one before he became a lecturer in Sports Therapy.
“I love it, really like it. To be honest I didn’t think I’d like it as much as I do. I find it really good. I like having the interaction with the students. I like the whole setup I have to say I really enjoy it.”
Having worked with so many sports teams and having set up the Dunboyne Sports Injury Clinic, Cathal is in prime position to help all of Portobello’s students no matter what type of career they are pursuing in therapy.
Working in smaller classes has allowed him to engage with his students as individuals, generating a level of pride as they work their way towards graduation and enhance their skill sets in sports therapy.
“With small classes and lots of practical interaction time, we get to know each student well over three years. So when a student gets to where they want to be, their perfect job or postgraduate position, I am delighted for them. I’m proud to be part of the team that helped them get there.”