Published: 21-10-2019 11:26 | Updated: 21-10-2019 15:35

In Memoriam: Annette Heijne (1964-2019)

Our beloved friend and colleague Annette Heijne passed away on October 4, following a long period of illness.

Portrait of Annette Heijne
Annette Heijne. Photo: Private

Annette will be remembered as an extremely warm and wise person, with tremendous empathy to connect with a wide variation of people, in her professional as well as her private life.

As a registered physiotherapist specializing in sports medicine, Annette started her career at KI as a lecturer in 2001, while also working clinically. In 2007, she earned her PhD defending her thesis which focused on rehabilitation following cruciate ligament surgery. This research had great impact on rehabilitation in this field, and particularly in relation to the patient perspective. Annette was appointed associate professor (docent) in 2015.

During 2008-2013 Annette served as head of the Division of Physiotherapy, and thereafter deputy head until 2018. Her leadership was based on commitment, kindness and sincerity, as well as professional competence and great strategic ability. Annette was a person who always gave sound advice and was able to see the potential in all of us.

Annette was a respected and established researcher in the field of sports medicine, focusing mainly on mapping the extent of, as well as the causation of sport injuries among young elite athletes. Her research is published in renowned journals and has been often highlighted by the Swedish media. Annette has on several occasions been interviewed by SVT and major newspapers. She was also a valued teacher and dedicated supervisor to a number of PhD students as well as master’s students. Her knowledge and expertise was also sought after outside of KI, for example as a board member for different organizations or book editor.

As a highly appreciated teacher, Annette had great impact on education at the Division of Physiotherapy, specifically within sports medicine, rehabilitation after sports injury, strength training and yoga training. Part of her leadership at the division included responsibility for educational issues, such as ensuring pedagogical competence for teachers, ensuring excellence in course quality, and forming a curriculum based on a strong foundation in research. In 2010, the students at the Physiotherapy Program awarded Annette the prize for “Best teacher”.

Annette’s final achievement as a teacher and researcher was initiating a podcast “Fysion säger…” (“The Physio Says…”). Her vision was to use an alternative format to that best known within academia, as a means to spread research, pedagogical and clinical knowledge of colleagues at the division. She completed a few episodes before passing away, and her work will be carried on by other members of the staff. The division of Physiotherapy is proud to dedicate the podcast “Fysion säger…” in memory of Annette.

We are incredibly thankful for having known and worked with Annette and are fortunate to have shared her life experience and professionalism. Annette was a truly unique and inspiring person, with a smile on her face until the very end. She will be deeply missed.

Colleagues at the Division of Physiotherapy