Every culture has their own form of massage, from the fully clothed stretching of Thailand to the nearly naked Iomi Iomi of Hawaii. Each has a different explanatory model, from the meridians of acupressure to the anatomy of myofascial release. The common denominator?
Why do we enjoy touch so much? So much so that we pay people for it?
Social grooming is an essential part of being alive, and you can see it not only across cultures, but across the animal kingdom (and all over youtube!) Your favorite video of that cat massaging a sheep? Social grooming. Those silly primates at the zoo, picking bugs off each other? Social grooming.
The health benefits of social grooming are clear: stress goes down, health goes up, and social bonds get stronger. In a world that is becoming increasingly more physically isolated as we spend more and more time online, prioritizing touch has become even more important.
So hug your friends, cuddle your pets, and make an appointment today to reap the benefits of social grooming, and enjoy the touch we all crave.
Stay tuned for upcoming posts featuring our massage therapists and the modalities they choose to incorporate into their work!
This quote, “Let Plan B be your Plan A”, came across my ears this morning on the radio and it struck me! What an interesting concept. The person on the radio was talking about how often you plan and create your “A” strategy and then how often something happens and throws off Plan A. You are then automatically put on to track B. Well there are two things you can then do with Plan B. You can complain, be upset, and dig your heels in because this was not your original plan, or you can let Plan B be your Plan A.
What a great way to live life…
I started to think to myself how much negative time and energy would be removed if I just let Plan A go and seamlessly allowed Plan B to take over. Being very Type A (pun intended), I can schedule things to a fault. My intention actually for 2017 was to be more adventurous because I realized I had gotten to a point in my life where if things weren’t planned I would break out in metaphorical hives, itching to have a plan and being incredibly frustrated if I didn’t have one. Needless to say, I almost always have a Plan A. The rarity though in which Plan A goes off without a hitch is high. Now with small children it is almost a guarantee that something will put me into Plan B. Children just don’t operate on parents’ schedules, they operate on THEIR schedules. So what does that all boil down to? Well it brings me back to why this quote hit a positive chord with me this morning. I can have my Plan A (which I love), but if I end up with a Plan B I am going to have just as much enthusiasm and passion for it as I would for Plan A.
Lastly, I am going to realize that Plan A and Plan B still might turn in to Plan C-hildren, and that can work for me to.
Dana Neal – Spa Manager, Group Fitness Instructor, Open to Plan A,B or C.
Kneaded Relief resides next to a gorgeous restored prairie. This time of year, the grasses are a burnt orange, the trees a mix of lively yellow and pale green, and a smattering of bright light purple flowers remain. Enjoying nature outside is an excellent way to improve your health, and it’s been shown that bringing nature inside can improve the environment within. This blog discusses some common houseplants, how tend for them, and how they improve the atmosphere in your home, office, or spa.
At Kneaded Relief we always keep a few seasonal floral arrangements around the Spa to add natural touches to the space. We also have several plants that serve as functional decorations in our Wellness Classroom, Nail Suite, and Retreat. My house has more than a few plants in it, and as I was writing this blog, I think I just may get a few more!
The Spa’s largest indoor plant, a rubber tree or Havea brasiliensis, stands over five feet tall and is very easy to maintain. Rubber trees don’t mind dim lighting or cooler temperatures. Our Wellness Classroom where this plant resides is mostly windows, however it doesn’t get full sun this time of year and is often cooler. The plant thrives in this environment and helps us by eliminating toxins and purifying the air.
In the Nail Suite, we have a Christmas Cactus, or Zygocactus. These bright bloomers are named as they are often sold in the fall primed to bloom around Christmas. The leaves have a large surface area, allowing them to exude higher amounts of oxygen and water, while also filtering out dust and chemical particles from the air.
Outside nearly every garden shop, grocery store, or landscaped building chrysanthemums sprout happily from pots, reminding us that fall colors are beautiful, and to embrace the change of season. Surprisingly, the “common mum”, or Chrysanteium morifolium, purifies the air in a very specific way. The blooms remove benzene, a chemical that can be found in paint, plastics, and detergents. Our houses are full of these materials, and inhaling the fumes can’t be good for us. I love the thought of the colorful flowers I bring into my home cleaning the air, making the environment safer for loved ones and myself.
I often hear people say that they don’t have a “green thumb” or they always kill any plant they touch. Speaking from experience, plants don’t have vendettas against certain people. Anybody can keep a plant alive and thriving with a just a bit of effort. My suggestion is to Google the plant you are trying to care for and find detailed instructions for care. If you don’t know the name of it, try entering in characteristics (for example, dark green, round leaves, yellow spots, etc.) and you’ll likely be able to find it. When I was looking up information on our Christmas Cactus one site had 14 steps for care. If that seems like WAY too many, perhaps choose a plant that requires less attention. However, I can assure you that our Christmas Cactus looks excellent and we aren’t giving it that much attention.
Go out and get a plant! They’re fun to have around; they brighten up your home, look great, and improve the quality of the air.
Tara Coberly-Horrall – Guest Service Rep and Houseplant Enthusiast