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UofGH alumnus Malik Carby-Corbett finds his footing in his field

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Malik Carby-Corbett was an athletic youngster with a talent for hockey and baseball, but when he would watch sports growing up, it was not always the athletes he idolized.

Particularly after he suffered his first injury as an adolescent, Carby-Corbett became interested in the science of health and recovery.

“I remember I was about 13 when I went to physiotherapy for the first time. They did their whole magic – what I thought was magic – and they fixed me up, made me better. I thought it was so cool,” Carby-Corbett recalled.

“Watching sports as well, when athletes got hurt, I was watching the guy run on the field and make them better, work their magic. I wanted to be that guy who ran on the field.”

That led Carby-Corbett to the Kinesiology program at the University of Guelph-Humber. Here, Carby-Corbett’s passion for the field of kinesiology only blossomed as he earned an Honours Bachelor of Applied Science in Kinesiology and a diploma in Fitness and Health Promotion.

As he worked toward those credentials, Carby-Corbett found that he loved the way his program blended theory with application. Kinesiology students learn about everything from managing mental or physical issues, to preventing lifestyle-related diseases, to working with high-performance athletes. Carby-Corbett found it enriching to then have the opportunity to apply those ideas in real-world settings.

“You’re getting 240 hours of placement in the program. You get to work in a cadaver lab, so it takes you from the theoretical to actually working with a body,” he explained.

Carby-Corbett also cherished his field placement opportunities. In his first such role, Carby-Corbett worked at Competitive Edge Physiotherapy, a rehabilitation and sports conditioning clinic that gave Carby-Corbett a taste of exactly the kind of work he had wanted to pursue.

Later, he met the owner of SportSide Medical Services at an event hosted by the University of Guelph-Humber. Carby-Corbett subsequently began a field placement at the clinic, which delivers world-class sportside training and care to patients and athletes.

It was such a perfect fit that Carby-Corbett got a job at the clinic after his placement had run its course. Now, Carby-Corbett, a Registered Kinesiologist, works at the clinic as strength and performance coach.

He’s also landed a position handling athletic care for Rugby Ontario. That means that Carby-Corbett is the first one on the field to help assess or treat players’ injuries, concussions or other concerns. In other words, it’s his childhood dream come to life.

“I love being close to the action,” he said. “It’s a lot of fun. Being sideline is definitely the best view. I get to go out there and do my part to help the team win. It’s nice to take somebody who’s injured and worried about what’s going on with their health and get them back to feeling better.

“Pretty much from Grade 8, I knew that I wanted to do Kinesiology – be that guy who runs on the field,” the alumnus added. “The University of Guelph-Humber played a huge part in me getting to where I am right now.”