Smile ?. It’s what you can’t help doing when you talk about the clients and teachers at Mind the Mat. Although it’s difficult to describe the feeling you get when you enter MtM, everyone seems to talk about the unique essence of this tribe. Woven throughout the skilled instruction (our teachers rock!) and wonderful clients, are two themes or archetypes: jester ? and lover ?.
Essentially, it’s 1 part party and 2 parts peace.
I asked Kevin, a brilliant yoga teacher who dabbles in creative short film production, to capture that “party” feeling on a Saturday morning. After filming that day, here’s what Kevin had to say:
“Mind the Mat has become so much more than just a studio where I practice and teach yoga. It’s a place where I can just be myself, putting aside any expectations of who or what I’m supposed to be, a place where I make time for me, a place where I can settle and let go — a place I call home. What I love most about Mind the Mat is how encouraging they are to just be yourself and, through this, they’ve cultivated a community of people who bring out the best in each other. I’ve always wanted to capture how amazing the community here truly is—how we work hard, sweat, and challenge ourselves, but more than that, being there for each other, cheering each other on, and having fun together. The community at Mind the Mat that makes me smile every time I talk about it. I’m even smiling right now. Thank you so much to everyone for making this place special!”
See Kevin’s work and how he captured the party side at Mind the Mat!
Kevin teaches Hot Yoga at 7:45 pm on Thursdays in Del Ray.
Megan Brown, physical therapist, Pilates instructor, mother and co-founder of Mind the Mat Pilates & Yoga in Alexandria, VA, likes to goof around. Yet her commitment to her students and her skill set in the field is no joke. After graduating from University of Virginia with a degree in Sports Medicine, Megan went on to receive her Masters in Physical Therapy and eventually her Doctorate in the profession. Although Pilates was never part of the plan, the method changed the way she treated patients, positively re-directed her career path and enhanced her own active lifestyle. Customized Pilates instruction is her specialty–she designs classes based on clients needs: athletes, new moms, rehabilitation or just for fun (why be serious all the time?). Pilates + Yoga is the best of both worlds, hence the creation of Mind the Mat studios providing classes for all—in every walk of life.
Mind the Mat Pilates & Yoga was founded in 2008 by Megan Brown, Doctor of Physical Therapy and Polestar Certified Practitioner of Pilates for Rehabilitation and Sara VanderGoot, Nationally Certified Massage Therapist and Registered Yoga Teacher (e-RYT 200, RYT 500). In their private practices as physical therapist and massage therapist respectively Megan and Sara observed that many of their clients were coming in with similar needs: relief for neck and shoulder tension and low back pain as well as a desire for more flexibility in hips and legs, stability in joints, and core strength.
Together Megan and Sara carefully crafted a curriculum of Pilates and yoga classes to address needs for clients who are pregnant, postpartum, have injuries or limitations, who are new to Pilates and yoga, and for those who are advanced students and are looking for an extra challenge.