The Team

Our team of highly trained physiotherapists are motivated by getting you back to full fitness. We have a huge variety of professional and sporting interests.

Physiotherapy Team

Candace Donovan


BSc.PT (Distinction)
Member Sports Medicine NZ
SPNZ (Sports Physiotherapy New Zealand)
NZ Academy of Sports Carded Provider

Professional interests:

Professional Sports Contract Coordinator ⁄ Contract Manager
Team Physiotherapist for TASMAN MAKOS
Academy of Sports Provider (High–end athletes)
Advanced Physiotherapy consultant & In–service Provider
Sport Specific Injury & Rehabilitation for maximum potential ⁄ performance enhancement
SIJ (Sacroiliac Joint)

Personal interests:

My Family
Multi Sport (Running, Cycling road ⁄ mountain bike, Kayak)
Hiking & Outdoor activities
Basketball, Rugby, Soccer

Simon Robins


Bachelor of Physiotherapy (Otago, NZ)
Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Medicine

Professional interests:

Sports Physiotherapy (Rugby, Cricket, Winter Sports)
Mulligan techniques



Personal interests:


Born and bred in Highlanders country; I’m a passionate rugby fan. I graduated from Otago University in 2005 with a Bachelor of Physiotherapy and moved to the Hawkes Bay to work in a private sports physio practice and with a number of local and representative rugby union teams. I worked in Sydney both in private practice and for the Rabbitohs under 20’s side. I was then privilidged to work with the Samoan team at the 2008 Rugby League World Cup in Australia, before travelling to the UK to do my OE. After a number of rewarding locum positions and some awesome times travelling around Europe, I returned to New Zealand recently to work in Wanaka where I was treating many world–class snowsport athletes.

I started at Sports Therapy in 2011 and enjoy working with the wide variety of athletes in the Nelson region. I have established a great working relationship with Waimea Old Boys and have been delighted to be part of their recent success. I’m enjoying the Nelson lifestyle, doing a bit of spear/kayak fishing and working on my golf handicap!

Susanne Bennell


BSc. Physiotherapy (Cardiff University, UK)
Msc Module “The foot in Diabetes”
AACP Foundation Qualification in Acupuncture

Professional interests:

Sports Physio, Pilates & Sports Massage
Watersports & Wintersports injuries
The ‘glutes’


Personal interests:

Windsurfing, Sailing & Kitesurfing
Mountain Biking, Snowboarding & Multisport

I am originally from North Wales in the UK. I studied a BSc in Physiotherapy in Cardiff University and qualified with honours in 2006. Following this I worked for the UK National Health Service for 5 years in order to gain good experience in a wide range of fields. It was during this period that I found my love for musculoskeletal and sporting injuries.

In February 2011, I decided that it was time to move on to more exciting and stimulating working environments in New Zealand. I initially worked in New Plymouth, then Tauranga, Wanaka and eventually made my way to Nelson. I enjoy the outdoors and the mountain biking on offer from the doorstep is world class. Nelson is such a sporty place and is a great community in which to live and work. It appears New Zealand has captured me well and truly. My partner runs Nelson Watersports down at Nelson Yacht Club, and we’ve just bought a house… So I can’t see myself leaving anytime soon!

Jo Higgins


Bachelor of Physiotherapy (Otago, NZ)

Professional interests:

Musculoskeletal Sports

Personal Interests: 

I am Dunedin trained; qualifying in 1981 with a passion for travel. Physio has served me well enabling me to work in the U.K., South Africa and the Middle East predominately in the musculo-skeletal field.

I returned to New Zealand in 1995 where I ran my own practice for the following 13 years. I have now swapped my passion for skiing with sailing, tramping and very sporadic golf.

I am loving Nelson and all it has to offer. I consider it a privilege to be able to help people on their way to better health, so as to maximise their enjoyment of life in this fantastic environment.

Glenn Ward


Bachelor of Physiotherapy (with Credit) (Otago University)

Professional interests:

Sports physiotherapy (football, rugby, cricket, running)
Dry needling
Mulligan and manipulation therapy
Kinesio taping
Gait analysis


Personal Interests:


I graduated from the University of Otago in 2005 with a Bachelor of Physiotherapy and have worked in a sports physiotherapy clinic for the last 11 years, with a 2 ½ year stint working at Wellington Rugby. I’ve also undertaken further training in spinal manipulation, kinesio taping, and have been using trigger point dry needling since 2007 to help athletes recover in optimal time. Over the last decade I’ve worked extensively with rugby- ranging from club to provincial levels up to the Wellington Lions and Sevens teams. Aside from rugby I’ve also worked alongside the Northern Knights cricket team; Wellington touch rugby team; Canterbury United ASB premiership football team; Otago and Canterbury AFL (Aussie Rules) teams; and in recent times lent a hand with my wife’s netball club.
Originally hailing from Wellington I moved to Nelson to be closer to my wife’s family and raise our son in the sunny Tasman region. I am currently the physio for the Nelson Suburbs Mainland football team, and both the men’s and women’s Tasman Sevens teams. Outside of physiotherapy I like to stay active, be it going to the gym or chasing after our young son.

Nicole van Vledder


BSc Physiotherapy and M Physiotherapy (clinical masters in orthopaedic manipulative physiotherapy or OMT)

Special Interests

All Orthopaedic injuries, necks and backs and dry needling




Personal Interests


Trail Running in beautiful places


Family Time


Ingrid Koevoet (Inge)



Bachelor of Physiotherapy with Credit

– University of Otago


Professional Interests:

Sports Physiotherapy

Trigger point dry needling


Personal interests:

Enjoying the great outdoors
Tramping and cycling
Mountain biking and sailing
Soccer, Triathlon and Gymnastics

After University I spent time working at Whakatane Hospital where I gained good all-round physiotherapy experience and the confidence to go abroad. I then moved to Australia and worked in a Sports Injury clinic in Coffs Harbour before once again returning to the public system working at QE11 Jubilee Hospital in Brisbane in the outpatient department. Having worked in both private and public Musculoskeletal settings I have had good experience facing the challenges of both acute and chronic injuries. But, the pull of home and wanting to be closer to my family eventually got the better of me and hence have made the move back to Nelson in December 2016. I am really looking forward to riding the new mountain bike trails around Nelson and enjoying tramping without worrying about spiders and snakes.


  Tneal McKay-Wilson


BHSc Physiotherapy – AUT University
Diploma Sport and Fitness – Aoraki Polytechnic
Professional interests:

Sports and Sideline Physio
Post-operative rehab
Mobility and Functional Training



Personal interests:

Tramping and getting outdoors

 Chris Wahnig



Bachelor of Physiotherapy with credit (Otago University)

Bachelor of Anatomy (Otago University)

Professional Interests:

Sports Physiotherapy

Persistent Lower Back Pain

Dry Needling


Personal Interests:




I graduated in 2012 with my Bachelor in Physio from Otago and sought to travel with my degree. I ended up in Adelaide for 4 years working in private practice and taking the opportunity to physio for a couple of local rugby teams as well as the State U18’s,U20’s and Women’s Rugby Teams. I left to travel Europe and Asia for 4 months before moving back to New Zealand. I am currently reliving my love of trail running and taking some down time to fish the Nelson rivers.


  Carly Smith


Denver School of Massage Therapy
Professional interests:

Carly is a graduate from the Denver School of Massage Therapy and has been practising massage for the past 6 years. In massage school she studied 13 different massage modalities, with continuing education in sports and injury specific massage.



Personal interests:

Carly has recently moved to Nelson from the USA. She and her husband love to walk on Tahuna beach each day and enjoy the outdoor life that Nelson has to offer. Her favourite food is Proper Crisps.



The Front Desk

Jane Martin

Jane websitePractice Manager

Jane is responsible for the overall running of the practice and thoroughly enjoys working alongside staff and patients. She has had previous experience in managing other businesses, finance and administration.

Jane loves spending time with her family as well as mountain biking, running and surf skiing in her spare time.





Karen Bradley


Karen is a long standing member of our reception team. She specialises in the administration and accounting area of the business.

She is a true Nelsonian having spent most of her life appreciating our wonderful region.

Outside of work Karen enjoys gardening, travel, cycling, walking and spending time with her family.





Gaye McKenzie

gaye 003Receptionist

Gaye is our new receptionist who has come to us from a Motel and Farming background. She and her husband have moved to Nelson to be close to her family.

Gaye enjoys golf, bridge and the odd glass of wine.