2021 Rising Star Award: Mr Stephen O'Rourke
Class of 2014, School of Physiotherapy
- Country of residence: Ireland
- Professional title: Senior Spinal & Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist, The Poynton SpineCare Institute, Dublin
Mr Stephen O'Rourke trained as an actor as The Samuel Beckett Centre, Trinity College and worked as a professional actor and performer before entering the world of physiotherapy.
Stephen graduated from the School of Physiotherapy at RCSI in 2014. He went on to work as a rotational Staff Grade in Beaumont Hospital and in both vestibular and musculoskeletal private practice. During this time, he pioneered Ireland's first Healthier Dancer Program and Injury Screening Program supported by Dance Ireland. He also undertook research examining injury incidence and physical fitness in aerial dance performers with the support of RCSI and the Irish Aerial Creation Centre. He has presented this research at both the International Association of Dance Medicine and Science and the American Circus Educators international conferences.
In 2016, Stephen became Company Physiotherapist for Riverdance and toured China visiting 18 different cities. He went on to become Senior Physiotherapist at Franco Dragone's The House of Dancing Water Show in Macau in 2017, looking after over 100 professional international performers, from ex-Olympic gymnasts and Red Bull cliff divers to dancers and elite-level motocross riders.
This award was generously sponsored by Physiologix.