Episode 76 - Kathy Hoyt, part 1: Sorting It Out

Kathy Hoyt, PT Dip MDT 


Kathy Hoyt graduated from Douglass College, Rutgers University with a degree in Mathematics and then continued to Columbia University in New York to earn  a certificate in Physical Therapy in 1974.  She completed the Kaiser Hayward Orthopedic Manual Therapy Residency in 1980.  She began studying with McKenzie in 1977 and was instrumental in founding the McKenzie Institute, and served as Chairwomen for the first seven years.  She was one of the first to earn the Diploma in MDT in 1991 after training in New Zealand.  She served as senior faculty member for the McKenzie Institute for 10 years.  She is now involved with online educational training for the Institute, the MDT APTA Recognized Fellowship, faculty development and clinical examinations.  She is a member of the MDT International Education Committee.  She has worked in various clinical practice settings and currently is a Senior therapist in a community outpatient orthopedic department in Long Beach California.


Show Notes


Personal Background

Originally from New Jersey, Kathy now lives in Long Beach, California.  She’s been married 35 years and has 3 sons and 2 grandchildren.


Professional Background

Originally earned a degree in Mathematics from Douglas College and a certificate of Physical Therapy from Columbia University in New York.  Kathy’s first job was at Ranchos Los Amigos hospital, a well known rehab facility.  Early on there she was assigned to work with Dr. Vert Mooney.  She and a colleague, Barbara Stone, worked on an orthopedic study group not long after she began working in orthopedics.  

She first observed Robin McKenzie teach a four day course with no book or slides or materials - just observations of Robin seeing patients.  This was a major contrast to most continuing education. She committed to the Kaiser Orthopedic Residency for one year which exposed her to a wide range of experts from many different approaches. She’s worked closely with Robin and other international instructors.  

She currently is in private practice and serves on the McKenzie Institute International Education Committee. 

Kathy elaborates on what it is about this McKenzie Method of MDT that allows it to be relevant and beneficial irrespective of time.  She also elaborates on how it has evolved over time.  Through the orthopedic residency she completed, she was able to see merit in many approaches and she observed some similarities between approaches including history-taking and application based on the context of each individual patient.



“Educate Me”
       Vert Mooney

She learned to allow new ideas and new approaches, no matter if they first appear ridiculous, to be explained before dismissing it.


“Sort it Out.”
      Robin McKenzie

Kathy learned to use those critical thinking skills, taking what she was taught and apply it to the situation.


Patient Story

Kathy reflects on a patient she observed Robin McKenzie treat where he prescribed flexion which surprised Kathy and revealed to her that she fell into bad habits.  Another patient with thoracic pain, that Kathy treated while Robin observed her, showed some evidence of needing a lateral approach for resolution and what she chose for reduction was effective but she learned a great lesson from Robin that day.