The Thembakazi Trust Research and Outreach Centre

The Thembakazi Trust combines the Research and outreach arms of the Sports Science Orthopaedic Clinic. The objectives of the trust is (i) to provide required surgery and rehabiliation to individuals, predominantly under-privileged and talented sportsmen/woman, which require orthopaedic knee surgery, and (ii) to supports and promotes research in orthopaedic and sports medicine related fields, which may assist future injury prevention and improve surgical outcomes.

The Thembakazi Trust works in close collaboration with the University of Cape Town’s Research Unit for Exercise Science and Sports Medicine and the University of Cape Town’s Orthopaedic department to produce world leading research in the field of orthopaedic and sport medicine related fields. The Thembakazi Trust also works in together with the Sports Science Institute and the Sports Science Physiotheraphy Clinic to provide medical care and management to young talented sportsmen and woman.


The Sports Sport Science Orthopaedic Clinic has a strong research collaboration with the UCT/MRC Research Unit for Exercise Science and Sports Medicine. The inter-disciplinary team consists of Orthopaedic Surgeons, Scientist and Engineers. Our research team’s primary objective is to optimise, prevention, treatment and rehabilitation of various Orthopaedic conditions .

Orthopaedic conditions / pathology, which results from physical activity, activities in the workplace, or daily living are very common and have a huge burden on populations across all ages. Physically active populations commonly suffer acute orthopaedic injuries such as anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) ruptures, whereas older populations are often affected by debilitating chronic degenerative osteoarthritis. Our research group has specific interest in treatment and rehabilitation of knee orthopaedic pathologies; ACL ruptures and chronic degenerative osteoarthritis. The most common treatment modality for these mentioned pathologies include ACL reconstruction and total knee arthoplasty (TKA; replacement), respectively. Our specific research interests involve optimal treatment and surgical intervention and rehabilitation.

The current objectives of our research are:

  1. Identification of optimal rehabilitation techniques after TKA
  2. Identification of optimal rehabilitation techniques after ACL reconstruction
  3. Identification of kinetic and kinematic deficits after ACL rupture
  4. Identification of kinetic and kinematic deficits after TKA
  5. Identification of optimal technique of TKA and ACL surgery

Research Team

M Posthumus, W van der Merwe, H Hobbs, M Collins, A Bothma, D Karpul, Y Albertus