Eli, the licensed massage therapist at Lotus Rays Alignment, has administered more than 11,000 massages over the course of her career. Believing that illness is the result of stagnant life energy, Eli most often performs signature healing massages, which blend various techniques with aromatherapy, mantras, Tibetan bells rung to the tune of Miles Davis’s “Move,” and Swedish and shiatsu strokes. She performs such treatments at Lotus Rays Alignment, a storefront studio with framed paintings lining the interior’s inviting, pastel walls.
At The Body Repair Shop, licensed massage therapist Robin dedicates herself to helping clients achieve relaxation. Beneath her nimble fingers, tension melts away via a wide range of massage styles, from the long, flowing strokes of Swedish massage to hot stone, which, despite popular belief, is not a pickup line from one geologist to another.
Dragonfly Integrative Wellness, Inc.’s therapists draw from Eastern methods to help improve clients’ overall health and mental well-being with massages and other holistic therapies. During craniosacral therapy and reiki, practitioners place gentle touches on bodies to release tension and balance bodies’ energy. Tui na incorporates traditional massage techniques to focus on chronic pain at acupressure points. Available massage therapies include Thai massage, which is based on stretching movements, and shiatsu bodywork, which helps to relieve pain and stress by stimulating pressure points.
The book Necessities: Chicago said Massage Therapy Center of Winnetka has Chicago's best massage therapists. Past clients include a member of the 2010 U.S. Olympic bobsled team and several White Sox players during the 2005 World Series. For a highly targeted muscle melting procedure, opt for trigger-points therapy, which identifies irritable muscles and improves their attitudes with masterful manual compression. Shiatsu, which is also known as acupressure, is an Eastern method of applying finger, palm, and thumb pressure to points on the body that are impeding the ki (or energy flow) and causing pain, stress, and chilly blood. Massage Therapy Center of Winnetka's menu also offers a classic Swedish knead, prenatal massage, and procedures such as neuromuscular therapy and performance-enhancement sports massage to treat and prevent pain caused by muscle exertion and falling pianos.
Inside a series of plain-white, windowed studios, empty except for futons and pillows, the professional therapists at Zen Shiatsu Chicago heal bodies with techniques rooted in millennia-old traditions. At the same time, they pass those techniques on to students in the zen-shiatsu certification school that shares space with the clinic. Teachers and students perform shiatsu therapy, using both hands to manipulate muscles and unblock clients’ energy pathways. They also administer contemporary Western massages to ease tense muscles, whereas acupuncture treatments let out bodies’ excess helium.
In addition to awarding certifications and leading continuing education in massage, naprapathy, physical therapy, and acupuncture, instructors train students outside the classroom through social outreach, exposure to integrative medicine, and visits to local hospitals’ neck-cramp wards.
Janine Jozwiak has hired a team of licensed acupuncturists, massage therapists, and Chinese-herbal-medicine experts to treat an eclectic list of ills since 2007, though her experience began somewhat earlier. In 2002 she decided to augment her bachelor’s degree in applied psychology with a three-year master’s in acupuncture, during which she discovered the world of traditional Chinese medicine. Today, she is a reiki master, a certified clinical medical thermographic technician, and a practitioner of a 2,500-year-old form of acupuncture. Her staff at Nature’s Balance Acupuncture maintains an arsenal of infrared saunas, ion cleanse foot baths, and Delta Pulse technology to find holistic and drug-free methods to ease stress and boost overall health.