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.