State-licensed massage therapist (license #004958) A. Malaika Sharp cultivates relaxation and targets each client's unique issues with a focused menu of services. She can shoo everyday stress away through basic relaxation massages, but she’s as focused on function as she is on feeling good. An avid martial artist and cyclist, Sharp consults with all clients to understand the ways they use their bodies for work and recreation. That helps her pick out distinct patterns of motion and coax bad habits or stored tension out of muscles, whether she’s targeting chronic aches through deep-tissue techniques or helping athletes recover from strenuous duck-duck-goose training through sports massage. Or, for those suffering from headaches and migraines, she can incorporate trigger-point therapy. Sharp is also a member of the American Massage Therapy Association and is certified through the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork.
Within Sixsixty Salon, trained massage therapist Kimberly Joy Carey aims to relax clients and encourage holistic wellbeing with massage therapy. To do this, she customizes each session using Swedish techniques, stones cooled or heated in water, and trigger-point modalities. Each technique is designed to increase blood circulation, ease tension, and soothe achy muscles after sleepwalking into a staircase warehouse. Kimberly is also trained in the advanced technique of raindrop therapy, which brings harmony to the body by incorporating essential oil aromatherapy with a combination of Swedish massage and traditional Tibetan and Native American techniques.
Born and raised on a farm in Hadley, massage therapist Heather Barstow uses the same hands that once worked the fields to plow away clumps of tension, pain, and anxiety with massages in various modalities. Skilled in Swedish, deep-tissue, and prenatal techniques, Heather tailors each session to her clients’ individual health issues; simply tell her what ails you during a pre-massage consultation, and she will make sure to focus her attention on areas with the highest concentration of tension or “Kick Me” signs.
Licensed massage therapist Penny J Mitchell blends Eastern and Western massage techniques to address whatever physical or emotional needs her clients may have. At Bodyworks Massage and Wellness, she fine tunes the body and quiets the mind with Reflexology and relaxation Swedish massages. But with training in orthopedics and movement science, she caters to pain and injury as well—she offers comprehensive back therapy and whiplash therapy, and all bodywork can be heightened by applications of moisture wraps, heat therapy, and aromatherapy.
Licensed massage therapist Phutsog Wangamo has spent more than 25 years practicing traditional Tibetan medicine, an art that first appeared millennia ago and later assimilated elements from the Greek, Ayurvedic, and Chinese healing traditions. Along with graduates of the Shang Shung Institute School of Tibetan Medicine, Wangamo founded a healing center where she could share this ancient healing art with others.
Today, Shang Shung Tibetan Healing Center continues to earn new converts with a holistic approach that focuses on balancing the mind and body. The center’s wellness professionals address problems that range from stress and insomnia to the aches of old age. A personalized health consultation benefits first-time patients, recommending dietary and lifestyle changes based on individual factors. The wellness expert might also suggest kunye massage, a Tibetan healing art that incorporates medicinal oils, hot stones, pressure-point therapy, and assisted stretching. For a more general overview of holistic health, sit in on one of the center’s monthly public talks. These informal gatherings center on topics such as pediatrics in Tibetan medicine and how to prevent aging without freezing oneself in carbonite.
Amid the chaos of life, the therapists at Natural Balance Therapeutic Massage step into a bubble of calm at work. Their clients go there to find peace as well, and they gently glides their hands over their dermal canvases during Swedish, deep-tissue, and sports massages. The therapists also help to alleviate pain in the body by concentrating on the feet during reflexology treatments and “This Little Piggy” sessions. Reiki sessions also prove useful in tempering aches and stress by releasing energy blockages.