Shawn Flot: Understanding the body

Shawn M. Flot is a manual physical therapist, an ancient profession of reducing pain and inducing relaxation without the use of machines or devices other than hands.

For 19 years, Flot says he has provided skilled touch to feel and understand the body and its integrative physical-energetic systems.

He also is a teacher. He earned a master's in physical therapy from Northern Arizona University. His thesis was on the effect of padded hosiery in reducing forefoot plantar pressures.

As a registered yoga teacher, he has held classes on the foundations in Hatha yoga for three years, currently at Om Sweet Om Yoga Studio in Talent on Tuesday evenings. On Wednesday mornings, he teaches a men's yoga class as well as the foundations class.

For the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, he will lead a six-week class on vitality and movement this fall.

He will speak today at a free OLLI lecture on the foot and the spine as they relate to functional movement, balance and sustainability while aging gracefully.

He moved to Talent five years ago from his home state of Colorado.

Favorite aspects about the Rogue Valley: I love the Rogue Valley for its abundance in nature, local organic and sustainable food sources and the arts.

What facts about your subject gets your audience's attention? That we are not victims of the aging process. Rather, there are simple activities we can do to promote vitality and well-being. I like to bring hope to people that there is potential for healing at any age and that movement promotes this.

How do you introduce yourself to your audience? With gratitude. Without an audience, whom do you talk to? My hope is there is as much joy and appreciation for receiving as there is giving. That anything is possible.

Can you give us a few more career highlights? Other highlights are the development of a clinical practice and merging the wisdom of the healing arts of manual therapy and yoga through service, respect and recognition of the wisdom of the body. My offerings strive to facilitate deeper states of health through optimizing vital and functional movement.

What do you like to do during your time off? Hike and walk in nature with my sweetheart, Laurie, and our four-legged companion, Txuri, and practice yoga. I also like to read nonfiction and poetry and write poetry and insightful pieces. I draw a little and play native flute.

What do you still have on your bucket list? Continue journeys to Europe, South Pacific, Alaska and maybe Africa. Raft the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon — a big one. Trek in the Himalayas. Experience yoga in the origin countries of India and Tibet. Attempt to surf small waves. Be in and experience love every day.

How can we learn more about you? I write topics related to health and yoga and post on my website I am working on a book, which I hope to have published in the next two years.

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