PHYSIOTHERAPY TEAM

heleneHelene Simpson (Owner)

Helene graduated in 1984 from the University of the Free State. She worked at Conradie Spinal Unit for three years, followed by a year of lecturing in spinal injuries at the University of Pretoria.

She returned to Cape Town in 1989 to pursue her passion for sports related injuries. She completed her honours in Sports Science at UCT in 1990. During this year, she volunteered at the UCT Sports Injuries Clinic. She was employed by UCT in 1992 and set about expanding the practice, by extending the services to all students, UCT staff and alumni. She introduced on-field services at the UCT Rugby (club games and internal league). She also got involved with providing physiotherapy services at the Cape Town Cycle Tour in 1993.

In 1997, the practice became privatised with Helene as the owner physiotherapist. The practice was then opened to the general public as well.

Helene has been determined to extend the knowledge in the rehabilitation of sports related injuries to physiotherapists in working general practice. She has been involved in running SPT1 (established for this purpose) since its inception.

Helene’s main interest in sports related injuries is the treatment and rehabilitation of ankle injuries. She is currently lecturing on ankle injuries to the SPT1 attendees, MPhil students at UCT and MSc Physiotherapy students at the University of Stellenbosch. She is also doing evening lectures and weekend workshops to her colleagues on injuries of the ankle-foot complex.

Having completed her OMT1 in 2010, she focused on ankle injuries and wanted to consolidate her interest and completed her MSc Physiotherapy at University of Stellenbosch (Cum laude) in 2013. She received a Golden Key membership. Her thesis, Physiotherapists Physiotherapeutic Management of Acute Ankle Sprains: A survey of clinical practice in the Western Cape and comparison thereof to evidence-based guidelines, was awarded “best research” by a physiotherapist in 2013. She also published a research article based on her thesis in SAJP: (Volume 70, no 2 2014): Physiotherapy for acute ankle sprains: How do we compare to evidence-based clinical guidelines?

Helene was invited to present her case study (submitted as part of her OMT1 course) at the 5th International Ankle Symposium in Lexington Kentucky in 2012. She was asked by the Ankle Consortium to be a contributing author for the book: Quick questions in Ankle Sprains. Expert Advice in Sports Medicine; What is Cuboid Syndrome? 2015 (Amazon).

Helene enjoys attending orthopedic congresses on the foot and ankle complex to understand the surgical approach in management of ankle and foot complaints. She has recently attended the 6th International Ankle Symposium in Dublin (2015), the International Congress of Arthroscopy of the Ankle (Kwa Maritane, 2015) and COMOC in Cape Town 2016.

She has been a co-presenter at several colloquiums during 2015 and 2016 hosted by Ossur on “How I manage ankle sprains – the physiotherapist’s perspective” in Worcester, Stellenbosch, Cape Town, Nelspruit, KZN, and Eastern Cape.

Helene enjoys staying active: gymming and walking to stay fit for her physically demanding work. She also loves her family (and many pets) and her garden.


michael van rheedeMichael van Rheede (Senior Physiotherapist)

Michael graduated in 2006 from UCT as a physiotherapist. He is our most senior physiotherapist, having joined the team in 2008, after the completion of his community service at the Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital in Soweto.

Apart from a brief stint in Ireland, Michael has been a stalwart physiotherapist at the practice. He is the head physiotherapist for the UCT Varsity Cup team and league side. During his stint with the Varsity Cup, UCT has been fortunate to win two varsity cup titles and a Super League A title, and in 2015 they won the inaugural World Universities World Cup in Oxford.

Michael has been responsible for the implementation of injury prevention screening and intervention protocols for the UCT rugby football club, and he is currently collecting his data to be used for a masters in injury prevention. Based on a clinical perspective, this intervention has great potential.

He successfully completed his SPT1 in 2010 and is now lecturing part-time on the course as well. He is responsible for teaching the on-field skills for physiotherapists as well as how to travel with a team.

Michael assists in clinical education of UCT physiotherapy students: on-field skills, taping techniques as well as the treatment of various lower limb injuries.

He is married and has one son. He enjoys surfing when he gets a chance in his hectic schedule.


Debbie YatesDebbie Yates (Senior Physiotherapist)

Born and educated in Zimbabwe, Debbie graduated with an honours degree in Physiotherapy in London in 1987, where she worked for two years at the Royal London Teaching Hospital before returning to South Africa.

Over the years Debbie owned her own practices in Johannesburg and Simon’s Town. She worked in Saudi Arabia and France for two years before joining the SIC team in 2013. She can still speak fairly reasonable French!

Debbie’s main interest is the spine and low back pain was the focus of her masters thesis, which she completed at UCT. She has a diploma in Orthopaedic Manual Therapy (OMT1) and has done courses in acupuncture/dry needling.

She has also done some work as a Clinical Educator at UCT and thoroughly enjoyed working with the students. Debbie enjoys continual learning. In her spare time she goes on courses, reads and exercises.

Debbie was a competitive swimmer and played water polo as a physiotherapy student. While living in Gauging, she received her provincial colours in fencing.

She recently spent 18 months researching the impact of ageing on physical function and is currently working on different modules of pain management and medical communication skills.


Marisa Marisa Breytenbach (Senior Physiotherapist)

Marisa graduated as a physiotherapist from the University of Stellenbosch in 2008.

After completing her community service at Standerton Hospital, Mpumalanga, she obtained valuable experience in sports related injuries while working in a sports orthopedic practice at Menlopark High School in Pretoria.

Her love of travelling took her to Belgium for two years, where she completed a postgraduate diploma in advanced musculoskeletal rehabilitation and sport physiotherapy at the Katholieke Univeristeit Leven in 2013.

She joined the team at SIC in 2014. More recently, Marisa enrolled to become a registered Pilates teacher. Marisa is now in the final phase of completing her Body Control Pilates qualification.

Marisa enjoys outdoor activities and a variety of sports including running, cycling and triathlons.


perryPerry Cadiz (Senior Physiotherapist)

Perry graduated from Stellenbosch in 1998 and completed the SPT course in 2000. She qualified with the CALA certificate for hydrotherapy in 2000. She has also completed  post graduate courses in dry needling.

Perry worked in a big hydrotherapy and general out-patient practice before realising that her passion lies in sports-specific injuries. She has spent the past 13 years working with various athletes, from social runners to competitive and national sportsmen and women.

She joined the team at SIC in 2013 on a part-time basis so that she can spend more time with her three children. Perry has a special interest in the treatment and rehabilitation of upper limb injuries.

She is a competitive Masters swimmer so she can usually be seen with wet hair and goggle eyes at work.


Anna Prinsloo

Anna Prinsloo graduated suma cum laude from UCT in 2002.

After completing her community service at Eben Donges Hospital in Worcester she began her physiotherapy career at the Sports Science Institute of South Africa.

Since then she has continued to gain experience in the field of sport and orthopedic manual physiotherapy in various Cape Town-based private practices.

Anna completed SPT1 in 2015 graduating top in her class.

She is currently enrolled in the OMT post graduate diploma for 2016. We are delighted to have had Anna join the SIC team in March 2016.

Her activity interests are hiking, dancing and motocross, although she has recently hung up her ‘motocross boots’ (albeit somewhat reluctantly).


Andrew Coppin

Andrew is the newest and youngest member of the team. He graduated from the University of Cape Town in 2012.

Since completing his community service in 2013, he was the physiotherapist and conditioning consultant at Queens College High School. He was involved with both the rugby and hockey programmes.

He moved back to Cape Town in 2015 after a brief stint in Johannesburg where he started and managed his own practice. But ultimately his love for Cape Town and the outdoors brought him back “home”. His keen interest in exercise and performance conditioning of athletes inspired him to take over the reins of the on-field physiotherapy services of the internal league rugby at UCT.

Andrew is currently the official Western Province Cricket (Cobras) amateur team physiotherapist.
He is also currently enrolled in the OMT1 post graduate diploma, 2016.