Happy + Healthy Feet

When I was practicing in orthopedics I deemed one summer “The Summer of the Foot.”  I was working outpatient physical therapy and seeing roughly 2-3 patients per hour.  An astounding 75 percent of those were people with foot ailments!  Plantar fasciitis, post-bunion surgery, Morton’s neuroma, Achilles tendonitis, etc., etc., all came (somewhat) walking into my office at an alarming rate.

What is it about summer?  We are footloose and fancy free wearing our cute flimsy flip flops, unsupportive sandals, wacky wedges, and harrowing heels.  But our feet are the foundation of our skeletal structure, so we all need to take better care of them.  If our feet are not working well for us because of lack of support, poor mechanics or other joint injuries, life and daily activities can become very challenging and uncomfortable. Understanding your feet and learning simple solutions to reduce pain and discomfort will start you off on the right foot (insert laugh track) to a more enjoyable day to day life.

Our therapeutic yoga guru, Marianne Meyers, can help you on this path. Join her October 9 for Happy & Healthy Feet. In this workshop (Happy & Healthy Feet 10/8 – Marianne Meyers), Marianne will address:

  1. How the foot is designed to support us in movement: how the bones are designed in our structure defines where our weight is supposed to be.  In looking at the bones in the foot, this becomes clear very quickly.  Many of us may not be using that design efficiently and can be causing structural issues that could be avoided.  This misuse becomes very evident and challenging as we age, so addressing this earlier means a better quality of life for general movement.
  2. How various common and uncommon foot issues can affect us over a lifetime:  what we wear on our feet may be exacerbating discomfort.  In understanding the foot’s design, it becomes easier to understand and work with these issues in a healthy and proactive way.
  3. Exercises to help foot mobility and grounding:  a main component of Marianne’s Body Balance Yoga Therapy training and certification is spent on the study of feet and ways to address foot mobility.  If your feet don’t have mobility, other joints in the body will compensate for the foot’s lack of movement.  Learning how to release the feet with various props is very effective and will lead to an improved and fulfilling yoga practice.
  4. How to apply these techniques to various yoga asanas to enhance your practice and daily life:  Marianne has been studying Iyengar yoga since 1993.  The Iyengar system is devoted to prop usage to help find the movement that supports the structure.  From the first moments in a beginning level I class, focus is on the feet and looking at how your own feet work in basic standing is part of the class plan.

If your feet feel good, you feel good!  It is that simple!  Life’s too short to “suffer through.”  Many of Marianne’s students report improved quality of life because of the focus on footwork. This workshop is not for beginners, it is for students who have yoga experience and want to enhance their practice.

Marianne Meyers (RYT500, E-RYT200, YACEP) is a certified Yoga Therapist (C-IAYT) with the International Association of Yoga Therapists, a certified Body Balance Yoga Therapy instructor, and a certified Lakshmi Voelker Chair Yoga teacher.  (Happy & Healthy Feet 10/8 – Marianne Meyers)


  • The latest from Megan
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.


2214 Mount Vernon Avenue
Alexandria, VA 22301


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