Needleless acupuncture sounds like a contradiction, but Shelly Wade does it everyday—with lasers. Of course, she's well versed in traditional acupuncture as well. Licensed through the College of Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioners and Acupuncturists of British Columbia, Shelly found her way to acupuncture after a car accident interrupted her competitive dancing career. Impressed by its impact on her recovery, she began studying acupuncture along with other natural therapies, such as biofeedback and reflexology, to pay forward the benefits these therapies afforded her.
Today, as owner of Island Integrative Health Clinic, Shelly does just that by combining those multiple approaches to healing. She also specializes in anti-aging treatments such as facial-rejuvenation acupuncture, giving clients an alternative to Botox and never smiling again by applying a low-level current that combats wrinkles and other signs of aging. Further services her centre offers range from massage therapy to BloodScan, a live-blood analysis that aims to identify pre-symptomatic indicators of degenerative disease. No matter the treatment, she approaches each case with a gentle, welcoming approach, believing that acupuncturists must help their patients feel comfortable so that they remain open to the healing process.
Acacia's team of expert health-care professionals treats clients to individualized, naturopathic, and alternative health care in a relaxed setting. One-hour acupuncture sessions place patients in the expert hands of Victoria Spaurel, a registered acupuncturist and Chinese-medical-theory enthusiast. Practitioners insert needles into specific pressure points and frayed stitching on clients' bodies, working to balance overall energy levels. Acupuncture therapy aims to treat a wide array of health concerns, including chronic pain, insomnia, multiple sclerosis, bipolar disorder, irritable bowel syndrome, and being filled with helium. Although it improves stress levels and cell-phone reception for many clients, therapy is not recommended for candidates with bleeding disorders or needle phobias. Patients currently taking blood thinners such as warfarin may bruise more easily during their sessions, and clients taking any kind of medication are instructed to inform their practitioners.
Essential Health Centre specializes in individualized acupuncture treatments that promote health and help alleviate aggravating aches. Corrine Warburton, a registered acupuncturist, boosts bodily morale with pin-pricking procedures that target a variety of corporeal concerns, including sports injuries, back pain, fertility, headaches, and neck pain. Treatment begins with a 15-minute health consultation and commences with the pristine placement of hair-thin, sterile needles into specific points on the body, unblocking energy and clearing out internal traffic jams. Each acupuncture session is customized to individual needs, and the resulting calm after treatment will keep bodies levitating without the use of hot-wired magic carpets.
Ting-Hsia—or Tina, as her clients know her—may have been destined to practice traditional Chinese medicine. Both her mother and her father were practitioners, and they used TCM to treat Tina’s frequent illnesses when she was growing up. A weak immune system typically kept her down, but over the years, traditional Chinese medicine such as acupuncture, tui na massage, and herbal therapy gradually restored her health. This increased overall wellness may be due to traditional Chinese medicine’s ability to stimulate the body’s own self-healing properties, something she feels Western medicine currently can’t achieve.
Now a certified practitioner herself, Tina aims to escort bodies down their own paths of healing through a cadre of the same non-invasive, holistic techniques to which she was privy as a child. In order to tailor each treatment session to individual clients, each visitation starts with a consultation. After discussing the issue and answering questions such as “Will this hurt?” and “Can you make it hurt?”, she devises a treatment plan that integrates acupuncture, massage, and Chinese herbs she mixes on the premises.
At Dancing Hands Massage and Healing, therapist Melissa Brown has found a way to combine two of her great passions: bodywork and world cultures. These passions have a way of informing and enriching one another, as was the case when Melissa's expertise in bodywork allowed her to travel to Africa to practice therapeutic massage.
Today, Melissa can most often be found at her own relaxing studio in Victoria. Regardless of where she is physically, she can always be counted on to think outside the box. Aside from traditional modalities such as deep-tissue and Swedish massage, Melissa practices a technique of structural integration known as Hellerwork. Invented by Joseph Heller, this dynamic technique incorporates penetrating bodywork with movement education and dialogue designed to help clients better connect with their bodies.
The Chinese character bao refers to protection, therapy, and health care. Channelling these concepts, the staff at King Bao Wellness Center improves clients’ health and well-being with traditional Chinese techniques. During Chinese massages, hands, essential oils, or an ancient tools called Bian stones soothe muscles to help to increase circulation.
Acupuncture and reflexology treatments stimulate meridian points—the body’s energy channels—with either thin needles or manual pressure to relax and rejuvenate clients. Herbalists examine each client’s tongue and pulse to determine which herbs or patented Chinese medicines to prescribe or to reverse-engineer how many licks it took to get to the center of a tootsie pop.