His love for the world of sports encouraged Immanuel Maulang to focus on his scientific career as a specialist Sports Physiotherapist. This activity led him to become the Head of Physiotherapist in the Indonesian Football National Team.
Immanuel Maulang, usually called Nuel, is a senior physiotherapist who graduated from the Physiotherapy Study Program of Universitas Hasanuddin in 2007. Previously, he went to the Makassar Physiotherapy Academy and graduated in 2005.
In 2008, Nuel also completed his professional education in Physiotherapy at Hasanuddin University. He then took a master’s program in Biomedical/Physiology at the Unhas Postgraduate Program and graduated in 2012.
In the same year, after taking professional education, Nuel put his knowledge into practice by establishing a Makassar Physiocenter Clinic (Physiotherapy and Sports Injury Clinic). His clinic provides Physiotherapy/Sport Physiotherapy services (part of the Official Clinic of PSM Makassar).
Through an interview on Thursday (8/7), Nuel told his professional journey in sports physiotherapy. He started as PSM Makassar Physiotherapist Coordinator in 2013. In 2015, Nuel met the head coach of PSM Makassar, Alfred Riedl, and Nuel was given the opportunity to make an Injury Prevention Exercise Program for the players ahead of every match.
“At that time, many PSM players were injured. I discussed with Alfred Riedl, and he directed me to make the training program so that the players can prepare themselves, “explained Nuel.
Alfred Riedl was apparently interested in Nuel’s skill and competence. In 2016, when Riedl became the coach of the National Team, he invited Nuel to join as the Head of the Physiotherapist Team.
Based on his knowledge and experience for ten years of serving as a Sports physiotherapist, in 2018, Nuel received the Physiotherapy Expertise Award by the Indonesian Physiotherapy Association (IFI) as a Sports Physiotherapy Specialist (Sp.F.OR).
“This award was given for my master’s degree in Biomedical/Physiology as well as my experience dealing with patients and being a speaker at various international seminars. It is an honour for me because only two experts have received this award in Indonesia, in Makassar and Jakarta,” said Nuel.
Nuel’s name is now added with a new title with the predicate, which becomes Immanuel Maulang, S.Ft., Physio, M.Kes., Sp.F.OR.
Furthermore, Nuel explained that the role of Physiotherapists in the world of football is essential. According to professional team procedures, the medical team must be in the ranks of the football team. Physiotherapists are responsible for dealing with player injuries by developing a training program for the recovery process.
“For a professional athlete, time is valuable. The health condition of players is very influential on team management and coach strategy. Therefore, immediate treatment is needed to be able to determine whether players can play or not, “continued Nuel.
Managing players’ conditions is a challenge for Physiotherapists like Nuel. Ensuring recovery time from treatment given to players can affect the coach’s strategy. It takes cooperation from every player to restore initial performance supported by diet and sleep quality so that it can help to speed up the player’s recovery process.
As a figure who has a significant role on the field, Nuel’s task in the second match of the 2016 AFF Finals is quite challenging. However, his team won the runner-up of the 2016 AFF Cup, and it was Nuel’s first year joining. Then, the struggle of the Indonesian national team in the 2019 AFF U-22 Cup again sweetly ended by winning the championship title.
Currently, Nuel is still working as the Head of the Indonesian Football National Team Physiotherapist, as he has been contributing to the national team for five years.
It is not easy for Nuel to manage his time with all the tight schedules. Moreover, he also works for Unhas as a Lecturer in the S1 Physiotherapy Study Program, Faculty of Nursing. The national team agenda is part of community service, so Nuel can still manage his time with the national team.
“I really enjoy my busy life, because this is part of my hobby. I can manage my time as a lecturer and a Physiotherapist in the Indonesian National Team. Moreover, I can even look after my Clinic in Makassar and two branch offices in Sorowako and Wawondula in collaboration with PT Vale,” explained Nuel.
At the end of the interview, Nuel said that working with interests and abilities was fun. So, we can enjoy and be a blessing for work.
Nuel hopes that Physiotherapy in Indonesia can be further developed with a Doctoral (S3) program and several Physiotherapy specialist programs proved. So that scientific progress in Physiotherapy can be better known and appreciated in Indonesia and be equivalent to the quality of services abroad.
Kumara Tungga Dewa, S.S.
Editor: Ishaq Rahman, AMIPR