Like a potato, if the human body is not properly mashed and moisturized it will never be used for anything more than a science- project battery. Make sure your body is properly fluffed and buttered with today's soothing Groupon: for $45, you get a one-hour massage at Prolong Symmetry LLC in the Four Seasons Shopping Center in Chesterfield (up to an $85 value). This Groupon also entitles holders to free enrollment in Prolong Symmetry LLC's one-year membership program (a $50 value), which allows clients to book one massage per month at the discounted rate of $45 (for a total value of up to $135).
Prolong Symmetry's skilled therapists dip into a stock of massage techniques to drain the deepest tension reservoirs within the body. The owners of weary life vessels can soothe body and mind with 13 massage techniques: ashiatsu, Hawaiian lomi-lomi, reiki, reflexology, hot- or cold-stone massage, myofascial release, Swedish, Thai yoga, ashi-Thai, deep tissue, sports, or pregnancy. In ashiatsu Oriental-bar therapy massage, a therapist balances above the patient from two parallel bars placed above the massage table and massages the patient using only his or her feet. The flesh-ground melts below the stress slayer, causing tremendous potholes and the occasional landslide as bodies' blissfully relaxed skin-soil lets go of aches and stiffness.
Clients who prefer hands-on massages can book a lomi-lomi massage, which takes its name from the Hawaiian for "loving hands" and uses long, gentle strokes to set both body and soul at peace. The treatment is based on the idea that our bodies—not our minds or our mahogany trunks—store our memories and behavioral patterns. The massage encourages the body to let go of the old, relieving stress and tension. Prolong Symmetry coaxes tension from skeleton husks seven days a week by appointment only. Clients should arrive 5–10 minutes early to remove the outside world's shackles before each tranquility-flecked treatment.
In 2004, Rhonda Larkins underwent a lumbar laminectomy to fix a herniated disc, an injury she obtained while working as a package handler. Even after the surgery, she was left with pain and a lingering numbness in her left leg. Though physical therapy helped, she noticed that she felt particularly good after getting a massage. This observation led her to study Ashiatsu Oriental Bar Therapy—a type of massage in which the practitioner uses bare feet to deliver flowing, effleurage strokes—under the practice’s founder, Ruthie Piper Hardee. Rhonda is currently on the mastery level of this modality.
At Prolong Symmetry, Rhonda and her team of licensed massage therapists specialize in more than 10 types of massage. Services range from more traditional Swedish and deep-tissue massages to Hawaiian lomi-lomi, an ancient healing practice during which therapists stimulate the body’s pressure points with their thumbs, elbows, and thoughts on early Dada filmmaking.