Before the government regulated massage techniques in the 1980s, spa-goers never knew if their visit would entail soothing kneads by the hands of a professional or intense pressure by the foot of a elephant. Enjoy tried-and-true tension zapping with today’s Groupon: for $35, you get a one-hour Swedish massage with Reeyanana Cha at Ree-Lax 2 Escape, located in Wauwatosa’s Hidden Retreat Salon & Spa (a $70 value).
Licensed massage therapist Reeyanana Cha eases muscle tension and promotes blood circulation during 60-minute Swedish massages. In the comfort of a private room, Reeyanana channels Olympic doggy paddlers to loosen tight muscles with five styles of long, flowing hand strokes. Skilled fingers knead into biceps and beneath shoulder blades to release hard-to-reach knots, and hand vibration techniques cultivate blood flow deep in sensitive muscles. Before Reeyanana sends clients back into the world, cross-fiber friction produces therapeutic warmth in appendages and rhythmic tapping to the tune of the Star-Spangled Banner instills bodies with an invigorating sense of freedom.