History Topics The Gym used for Physiotherapy One of the first pictures of the gym at Stoke Mandeville Hospital in the 1970s. Image ©Dot Tussler Hanna, physiotherapist at the hospital said: This early image of the gym shows a lot of empty spaces and very little equipment. Also the wearing of trousers by female Physiotherapists only began in the 1970s. Much of the change and the growing use of technology has been driven by manual handling legislation: the use of hoists and lifts, weight suspension treadmill. Today individual Physiotherapists assess the risks of ‘therapeutic handling’ but many staff at Stoke Mandeville still do far more manual handling of patients than in other branches of physiotherapy.