Ian Dowling Brings Pro-Sport Standards to Physiotherapy Limerick ClientsLast Updated: August 1, 2020
Ian Dowling is a name regarded with reverence in top level rugby circles. And at Ian Dowling Physiotherapy Limerick, the former pro rugby star aims to provide clients with the same standards of treatment he received during his playing days.
Ian Dowling, owner of Ian Dowling Physiotherapy Limerick, knows everything about the wisdom of Teddy Roosevelt’s famous Man In The Arena quote, having been a professional rugby-playing star of the Munster Rugby and Ireland squads.
Now retired from professional rugby, Ian Dowling works with athletes of all ability levels, striving to provide them with services that are equivalent to the standard of medical care and support that he received as a professional rugby player.
Ian Dowling’s playing career was cut short by a playing injury, and Ian uses the experiences that he learnt during his recovery and recuperation to help his patients recover from sports and other physical injuries.
“The same attributes that helped me succeed as a professional rugby player are also helping me in physiotherapy,” Ian Dowling says about his physiotherapy practice.
12 Questions for Ian Dowling of Ian Dowling Physiotherapy Limerick
Ian Dowling took some time out to speak to us about his physiotherapy practice, making the transition from full-time professional sportsman to entrepreneur and physiotherapist, his favourites social media platforms and daily routines, and the key lessons he has learned from his careers in sports and physiotherapy.
1. Tell us about Ian Dowling Physiotherapy and your business goals.
I’m a chartered physiotherapist, and my goals are clear-cut. Having been a professional rugby player and benefited from the support of medical staff who were looking after me, what I want to do is to take the same expectations and standards, and deliver those to local people here in communities throughout Limerick
2. What gives you the greatest satisfaction in business?
Helping people with injuries get back to health, and helping them to achieve goals, whether it’s playing in a Schools Cup, or an elite athlete competing in an important event. I also work with people who are less active and want to become more active. Helping them to have a greater understanding of exercise and activity and watching them benefit from that is a source of great satisfaction.
3. Did you come from a business family, or was it all sports?
It was always sport. My parents were an electrician and a nurse, and were like taxi drivers, bringing me everywhere, whether to Kilkenny Rugby Club, or to O’Loughlin Gaels for hurling. When I came to Limerick I was studying Sport Science, playing professional rugby, and then to university to study physiotherapy, so there was no business background..
4. Describe the challenge of transitioning from professional rugby to physiotherapy?
With physiotherapy, there are so many different facets to it, you are constantly learning. And it’s the same with business. I’m always learning, always working. And there is still the connection, being able to stay involved with sports. When you’re active and constantly learning, you forget about things that you think you might be missing out on. Physiotherapy is something that I have a real passion for, and this has helped to make the transition easier.
5. What has been your biggest challenge in business so far?
The hardest thing is finding a routine. In sport, you know where to go, what to do, what to eat, and so on. So, a big challenge for me was developing a routine that enables me to do the work, supported by the right people, that’ll develop the business. Essentially, the same attributes that helped me succeed as a professional rugby player will also help me make me as successful in physiotherapy.
6. Who is the person you most admire in business or life?
I’ve always been surrounded by great people and they all have characteristics I admire and respect. Every team I’ve played with, from under-14s, up through under-16s, seniors, Kilkenny, Shannon, Munster, Ireland, I’ve admired them all. They’re all full of different characters with different personalities, and it’s those people, my friends and my family, who are my role models.
7. Which App or social media platform do you use for business?
I use Twitter, and I find LinkedIn really good for business.
8. What item do you never leave the house without?
My laptop. Everything’s on it, so I wouldn’t be able to survive without it!
9. What screen saver picture is currently on your phone?
A picture of my wife and my two dogs.
10. How much do you sleep at night?
I get seven hours, but what’s most important is the consistency and routine. I’m an early riser, so I get to bed no later than 11pm to be up before 6.30am.
11. What is the first thing you do in the morning?
First I let the dogs out and feed them before I go to the gym. Then I have breakfast. After that, I’m ready for the day.
12. What one piece of advice would you give to your younger self starting out in business today?
I’ve always thought that it’s important to be true to yourself, and work really hard. Apart from that, there’s something that a friend said, which I never forgot. My buddy got sent off in a match. Afterwards, his older brother was slagging him off, and my buddy came back with that famous thing Teddy Roosevelt said, about how the critic didn’t matter, but the Man in The Arena did. When I heard it, I though, ah, that’s brilliant. I looked it up later — “It’s not the critic who counts… The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena… who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” — and I think it’s something that anyone starting out in business or any young person should read and understand. Sometimes. it’s easy to get caught up in criticism, and allow yourself to be overly affected by things outside your control. All you can do is focus on the things that you can control—that’s all that really matters.