Effective communication skills educator and speaker for health professionals

  • Onsite Training & Workshops 100%
  • Seminar & Conference Presentations 96%
  • Providing Language Tools To Improve The Interview Process 98%
  • Motivational tools to eliminate clinician frustration 97%

Hi, I’m Annette Tonkin. I am the co-director of Mind and Body Consultancy

Where we help clinicians transform the way they work with their more challenging patients so that outcomes are dramatically improved for all concerned.

I am a budding blogger and a passionate educator. I often co-present with my colleague Kay Lindley to ensure that course participants gain the most out of our trainings.

I am expanding into authorship and have published my first Kindle eBook: The Change Begins With You.

My Content

For years I have had people tell me that I should write about my experiences and broad knowledge. On ceasing my work as a clinician, I finally decided to bite the bullet, own the role and to be intentional about it.

My passion is to help clinicians expand their knowledge and become expert communicators to supplement their clinical skills. To regain that sense of fun and wanting to make a difference that can be lost when treating unmotivated patients.

To that end, I write on building rapport, how to inspire patients to be accountable, dealing with strong emotions and how to use the mind to achieve better treatment outcomes. On occasion, I write about stuff that doesn’t fit neatly into one of these categories. You can find out more on my Start Here page

My goal is to create insightful, relevant content that you can put to work in your professional life. If you consider yourself a progressive clinician then this blog is for you.

I typically blog 1-2 times per week. To make sure you don’t miss my newest posts, you can subscribe via e-mail. It quick, easy and you can unsubscribe at any time.

My Biography

I have over 30 years experience in private practice specialising in sports physiotherapy. I started my career as a junior physiotherapist in one of the first Sports Medicine Clinics in Australia. I went on to become a partner in that practice before deciding to go out on my own. I went onto start up 3 more clinics whilst being heavily involved providing physiotherapy for sports teams at state and international level.

I worked with the Australian Women’s Cricket Team 1986 – 1989 and the Australian Women’s Basketball Team 2001- 2004. I was fortunate to work at two World Championships in different sports and the 2004 Athens Olympic Games.

After finishing working with sports teams in 2004, I started a physiotherapy practice in the Adelaide Hills where I incorporated fitness training with the usual clinical skills. By doing this I was able to interact with the patients on an emotional level to help them overcome fears and self defeating habits that often prevented them from achieving the recovery outcomes that were possible.

During my time as a clinician I came to the realisation that, as physiotherapists we are really well trained in how the body responds to injury and disease and how the brain controls the body but we are not well trained in how the mind influences the brain.

I believe that it is the mind/brain connection that often determines why 2 people with essentially the same injury can have vastly different outcomes.

Since finishing work as a clinician due to arthritis in my thumbs, I have spent the last 5 years studying Neuro Linguistic Programming, Neuroplasticity and the mind/brain connection. I have developed a special interest in how our communication, both verbal and non verbal has an significant effect on how our patients respond to us and the advice we give them.

As physiotherapists we spend a lot of time with our patients, often more than any other health professional. I believe it is our responsibility to be fully aware of the affect our communication has on our patients and also the affect it can have on their recovery.

My Family

I have been in a relationship with my partner for the last 13 years. My extended family is spread over the country but we still manage to catch up and we both enjoy the strong bonds that family provides. We have three cats and one dog that continue to entertain us on a regular basis.

We currently live in Perth, Australia but that changes every 2-3 years as we move with my partner’s work. I enjoy the challenge and stimulation of exploring new cities and meeting new people.

In my free time I enjoy reading, keeping fit, photography and cooking for friends and relatives.

Skills and Attributes

I am a fun, easy going results driven trainer and educator. Practiced in connecting with the needs of my audience as I’ve been where you are for over 30 years. Sometimes work is great and at other times it can be really hard.

I am excellent at rapport building, group facilitation and presentations. Able to foster genuine relationships with sound ability to communicate across all levels including various health related professionals.

I have advanced coaching, mentoring skills and training skills which complement my years as a physiotherapist.

For information on past and future speaking engagements CLICK HERE

A Podcast Interview With Bev Roberts

Recently a passionate wellbeing coach, Bev Roberts interviewed me as her guest on her podcast show Living Fabulously with Bev.  The episode is aptly called Be accountable for the life you choose to live.

My earlier life was challenged by deep depression and lack of self belief. There is nothing like experience to help you understand how powerful the brain and mind is. It was this experience that motivates me to do what I’m doing now.

This interview took me back to life in my twenties when I only just survived and although I would not like to repeat that time in my life I’m now grateful for all it taught me. This interview is an insight to my early professional life.

We spoke about:

  • A dual life of internal mess and external success
  • The impact of trying to prove I was good enough
  • Power of the mind body connection
  • Role of unconscious conditioning in the beliefs we acquire
  • Changing your beliefs by changing the wiring of your brain
  • Personal strategies for dealing with overwhelm, anxiety and dark thoughts
  • Managing frustration and anger
  • Awareness and impact of self-talk, blaming and complaining
  • Being aware of what you are putting into your brain

Listen HERE ! (I don’t know how long it will be available for) No Optin.

If you would like to be notified directly from Bev each fortnight when she has interviewed new experts or has new inspirational wellbeing insights you can Optin HERE

[Other info and your closing]


My ebook on Amazon Kindle

Take your communication style self- assessment

Customers Testimonials

Annette Tonkin is one of Australia’s leading health professionals. Having worked with her on the rehabilitation of Olympic athletes I can honestly say her knowledge of how to keep someone motivated when all else was crumbling down was inspiring. I whole heartedly recommend her services and ability.

Simon Moore


Annette Tonkin is one of Australia’s leading health professionals. Having worked with her on the rehabilitation of Olympic athletes I can honestly say her knowledge of how to keep someone motivated when all else was crumbling down was inspiring. I whole heartedly recommend her services and ability.

Bailey Keatley

Podiatrist, Posture Podiatry

Having been in the physiotherapy profession for many years, it never ceases to amaze me how the path to becoming great therapists is a never ending learning process. Continuing education has evolved to be so much more than courses on clinical conditions and treatment techniques. While we know the client will benefit from our applied knowledge, experience shows us we are often unsuccessful in gaining the long term results for which we strive. We need to have a much broader awareness of cognitive behaviour, personalities and understanding of the individual. Annette Tonkin provided our team with valuable information enhancing our awareness of the influence language and consulting styles can enhance or diminish our results. Her excellent presentation gave our staff both knowledge and tools to immediately apply in the clinical setting. All therapists need to develop and continue to improve their relationship skills and I thoroughly recommend Annette’s input to all health professionals striving to improve. Director Back In Motion Brighton

Max Kavanagh

Annette has extensive professional knowledge and expertise that extends beyond sports physiotherapy. Her passion has always been to apply a broad range of initiatives and also maintain a level of comprehension on the most up to date research in the area of rehabilitation. She applies and retains a caring approach best described as superior to any other allied health care professional I have ever known.

Jan Stirling

Coach Women’s Basketball 2004 & 2008, Dual Olympic

Thank you for a great course (Engage, Educate, Motivate)- it definitely had me thinking differently during my appointments the last week – I know I will continue to refer back to your resources time and time again!

Sophie Proud

Podiatrist Posture Podiatry, Adelaide Engage, Educate, Motivate course 25th and 26th March 2017

Health Business Advisory Group The inservice training provided by Annette last November was outstanding. The training content was completely relevant to surviving in clinical practice. We learnt about how to improve communication with our staff and with our clients. How building rapport creates better relationships with staff and clients. Better relationships improve staff retention as well as patient compliance with treatment. These factors make a significant difference in the success or failure of physiotherapy practices. We would highly recommend inservice training with Annette. In fact we have employed her services yet again in 2014.

Justin Steer, Antony Hirst and Lisa Wilson

Health Business Advisory

There is a significant correlation between the clinician’s non verbal skills and patient satisfaction. Patient satisfaction influences the viability of your business.

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