Massage therapists use bamboo as a unique source of soothing pressure. Study up, then relax with Groupon's look at bamboo massage.
A massage therapist's hands are strong and capable by necessity, but for deep, consistent pressure all over the body, bamboo can lend a little extra help. By kneading, tapping, sliding, and rolling smooth bamboo sticks?often heated?across muscles, practitioners can induce a state of deep relaxation in their clients. Because it's so versatile, bamboo can achieve effects similar to shiatsu, lymphatic-drainage, and thai massage while enabling more intense and prolonged pressure, since the rods relieve some of the hands' burden. Oil or lotion often accompanies the strokes, which can range from focused kneading with the end of the stick to rolls that travel the length of the body. Massage therapists are likely to use several rods for different parts of the body?thicker ones across the upper legs and shoulders, and thinner ones elsewhere to avoid squishing the tentacles. Wherever they roll, the sticks help promote circulation and release muscle knots.
Though bamboo massage is the new rising star on spa menus across North America, the tradition is rooted in ancient Chinese medicine. Since bamboo was part of daily life?used for everything from paper and musical instruments to simple farm tools and wireless routers?it was only natural that it found its way into the culture's healing practices. The plant even took on spiritual significance, becoming an enduring symbol for youth, prosperity, strength, and peace.
The sounds of snipping shears and lively chatter fill the interior of Utopia Salon & Day Spa, a full-service beauty emporium where professional stylists twirl around salon chairs as they cut and color hair to match the unique personalities of their clients. Among these stylists is Ali, whose wealth of experience finds a worthy outlet in her comprehensive repertoire of treatments. Ali’s highlights and coloring treatments infuse hair with the most common shades of summer, from the rippling yellows of a sunset to the vivid pinks of a sunburn. When she isn’t cutting and coloring hair, she adds texture and shine to strands with frizz-busting keratin smoothing treatments.
After Jessica spent a few years traveling to her customers’ homes, she decided it was time to settle down in one location and formally open her own business. Today, customers visit her calming suite for facials, waxing, lash tinting, and massages. As a way to personalize the session and further encourage relaxation during bodywork treatments, she encourages her clients to bring their own music or a recording of their boss lavishing them with praise.
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Even at a young age, Sharon L. Henry felt that she possessed a profound gift for helping others. Though her intuitive ability to sense pain was first confined to animals, in her teens she became aware of her capacity to help humans through massage and meditative work. Now a licensed massage therapist and the senior staff member at Harmony LMT, Sharon continues to use her gift to craft custom bodywork treatments. She is joined by the studio's other therapists, who ease ailing backs with warm oils and Swedish or deep-tissue strokes. When they aren’t beating back tension and ravenous pandas with warm bamboo sticks, Sharon and her team draw on ancient Chinese knowledge to combat cellulite with cupping treatments. Beyond the realm of human healing, Sharon also offers canine therapy for animals battling ailments such as hip dysplasia.