Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Top 10 Reasons People Seek Massage Therapy

Most of us are aware that therapeutic massage feels amazing; but massage also provides relief to a multitude of specific health concerns. Therapeutic massage has been proven beneficial in reducing muscular pain and tension; relieving lower back pain; lessening depression; giving K.O.'s to sleep disorders, lowering high blood pressure, increasing flexibility, and much more!

Experts believe that 90% of stress accounts for 80-90% of illnesses and disease. As massage is a great stress-reliever, you can see that we can avoid a lot of current, stress-related illnesses via massage therapy.

As mentioned above, there are several reasons why people seek massage. Below are the top ten reasons why most people seek massage:

1. Massage feels great!

Massage can be a wonderful experience for deep relaxation. Post massage leaves your body and mind feeling at amazing ease.

2. Pain Relief

Massage provides significant reduction in back pain, (including lower back pain), migraine headaches, neck aches, shoulder pain, joint pain, overused or sore muscles, arthritis, Fibromyalgia, and muscle injuries. A regular massage loosens all this unnecessary tension!

3. Stress!

That overworked, overwhelmed, spaced-out feeling. Massage provides deep relaxation lessening your muscle tension and lowering your blood pressure (by reducing heart and pulse rates). Massage increases your mental clarity, heightens mental alertness, and revitalizes your mind. Massage also increases academic performance and ability to focus on calculations.

4. Combating age

Massage therapy and bodywork improves immune system functioning while relieving muscle aches and stiffness. Massage also enhances tissue elasticity and joint flexibility; improves blood and lymph circulation; and promotes healthy vibrant skin.

5. Calming Emotions

You'd be surprised at the number of people who receive regular massage treatments as an alternative to 'dealing' with depression. . Massage therapy increases self-esteem, improves your mood, decreases depression, reduces anxiety, and quiets insomnia. Massage also can ease PMS symptoms.

6. Accelerated Healing

Massage therapy speeds healing of muscles, tissues, and skin. Thus sports massage is used and great for post-workouts, post-surgery, and muscle soreness in general.

7. Increased Flexibility/Mobility

Massage therapy is perfect for people who workout, are physically fit, those who are athletes, elderly, and even pre/post surgery. Massage is wonderful for improving motor skills. Massage therapy also maintains posture in the skeletal system.

8. Removing built up toxins

Massage flushes away waste products from your muscles, tissues, and skin more easily. This helps digestive disorders (such as spastic colon, constipation and intestinal gas).

9. Improving and Maintaining Skin Tone

Massage therapy stimulates skin gland production, leaving clear, healthy skin. Massage to the skin also helps to reduce superficial scar tissue, improving skin condition(s).

10. Better overall health investment, maintenance of optimal health

In summary:

Regular massage will make you look and feel years younger! Massage therapy is so much more than a luxurious way to relax. It is a wise investment in your health and being. Massage certainly should be regarded as proof to your dedication towards maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

Take a mini vacation for an hour or two!

John Rasch is a certified licensed massage therapist committed to helping people to establish and maintain health and mental well-being through massage therapy. For more in-depth information about combating stress, please visit:
Also please join his newsletter which provides tips on health, fitness, and well-being at and receive free complimentary e-book on the science of being well.
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Thursday, July 25, 2013

BeautiControl's Regeneration Tight, Firm & Fill Extreme Eye Complex

Watch the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles start to disappear around your eyes in as little as 15 minutes using BeautiControl's Regeneration® Tight, Firm & Fill® Extreme Eye Complex. It features maximum levels of the patent-pending Tri-Peptide complex that work immediately to create an optimal environment for the skin to naturally produce collagen. Tired eyes feel soothed with cucumber and chamomile extracts. Reduce the appearance of dark circles and puffiness with Haloxyl™ and a blend of red, green and brown algae.

To purchase please visit my BeautiControl Page or email me at

Monday, July 22, 2013

Can Massage Therapy Help Prevent Injuries?

Massage therapy is an ancient art and science dating back as far as 2000 BC. The popularity of massages has endured because it is a proven method of improving one's physical health and emotional well being. Massage is the therapeutic manual manipulation of the body's soft tissues. It not only is used to relax muscles and stimulate healing of deep tissue injuries, but it can also be used to prevent injuries.

Massage therapy can help treat and prevent not only sports injuries, but also injuries received during everyday activities. This type of therapy helps to improve and maintain muscle and connective tissue health which helps to reduce the chance of injury. It focuses on such areas as muscle tone and relaxation, range of motion, and flexibility. The muscles, tissues, tendons, and ligaments are manipulated manually using specific massage techniques for the purpose of restoring elasticity to the deep tissues and strengthening muscles to allow for more elasticity. This allows for better movement and makes the body less at risk of receiving an injury.

Massage therapy provides a number of therapeutic effects that helps minimize the chance of receiving an injury. For instance, over time, muscles can tighten and shorten which increases the risk of muscle, ligament, and tendon strains. Regular massage sessions helps keep muscles and tissues loose and flexible decreasing the risk of strain and tears. A deep tissue massage will improve circulation so that blood flow carrying oxygen and nutrients to the tissues will be increased. This will optimize muscle and ligament health and relieve muscle stiffness and tension.

There are massage techniques that cause the body to release natural chemicals called endorphins which are natural pain killers. It has also been shown that massage therapy on a regular basis can not only help prevent injury, but it also helps extend an athlete's career by maintaining physical health. Other ways regular massage sessions helps prevents injuries includes: improving mobility, joint flexibility and range of motion, increasing circulation, strengthening the immune system, and alleviating musculoskeletal problems which will improve posture.

When given by a by an experienced and licensed massage therapist, a massage will alleviate tension all over the body, including stress tension. One will be healthier, feel good all over, and be in better shape to ward off injury from engaging in everyday tasks such as house cleaning, gardening, moving items, and much more. A massage therapist is able to identify any tender areas that need work and stimulate the muscles and tissues to strengthen and tone. It is important to use the services of a licensed massage therapist as a person unskilled in the art and science of massage can cause injury. As well a professional massage will reduce the instances of soreness, spasms, pain in specific areas such as in the neck and lower back, improves joint flexibility, and improves range of motion, decreases blood pressure which can decrease the chance of a stroke or heart attack, and ensure fluids drain properly instead of accumulating in one area. The over all result is an increase in comfort and more ability to engage in physical activities.

Massage therapy has been practiced for so many years because of its proven health benefits. It is even a part of many conventional health treatments. In fact, many health insurance companies provide coverage for therapeutic massages. It is a therapeutic and preventative technique practiced by millions of people of all ages throughout the world.

All physiotherapists should stay up to date with physical therapy equipment developments. Athletes rely on physical therapy to rehab complex injuries and innovative physical therapy supplies can make the difference.
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Friday, July 19, 2013

Your Back Could Use A Facial Too!

When you come to 36 Oaks don't forget to try one of our flip flop facials! A decadent spa treatment for your face, and on the flip side, your back. Your back needs a “facial” too! An area that is hard to reach and often neglected. Your Flip Flop Facial includes back and face “facial” as well as your choice of neck and shoulder work, or hands and feet.
60 Minute Treatment $ 95.00
75 Minute Treatment $115.00
6963 Gibson Canyon Road
Vacaville, CA 95688
Open 7 Days By Appointment Only

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Hot Stone Massage - A Great Massage Technique

Hot Stone Massage Therapy, once thought of as a spa treatment, is becoming more and more popular in a clinical, therapeutic settings. The basics of the treatment remain the same. Lava stones are heated to a comfortable temperature and used throughout the massage to provide heat and relaxation to further loosen up tight muscles. The difference I find, lies in the techniques used. In most spa treatments I have experienced, the stones are placed on the body to heat up specific areas and then removed when the massage begins. Very rarely have I noticed the stones being used in correlation with the massage techniques themselves.

Massage Therapists are trained to use the heated stones along with massage techniques, alternating between the stone and their hands. Using the heat along with massage loosens the muscles quicker and provides a sense of fluidity in the treatment. Although hot stone massage can be beneficial all year-round, I personally enjoy it most during the cooler months.

Just like regular massage, each individual has a preferred pressure as well as temperature. Even though the stones are quickly dipped in water to cool them off, they can still be a little too hot. Make sure you communicate with your therapist if you are uncomfortable in any way. Communication is key in any treatment you are receiving. I also find that with the heat, clients can be a little more tender a day or two after. I always advise them to have a nice soak in the tub after any massage and make sure you drink lots of water, especially after a hot stone massage.

There are some contraindications to hot stone massage:

* Hot stones are not indicated in any trimester of pregnancy and especially within the first. Increasing the moms temperature will also increase the baby's and this could be dangerous to both.

* Anyone with a heart condition, increased blood pressure or heart disease. The heat increases blood pressure and can cause further damage in those with heart conditions

* Any acute injury that has indication of swelling. Heat increases swelling which in turn causes pain.

If you are unsure whether hot stone massage is right for you please check with you doctor first

Most benefits that cover Registered Massage Therapy will also cover Hot Stone Massage Therapy because it falls under the same categories in your personal insurance. If you are unsure please talk to your provider before booking.
This is just one of many therapeutic treatment we do at Essence of Heath. For more information on our other services please see out website:

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Saturday, July 13, 2013

Girl's Birthday Spa Party

Are you looking for something unique to do for your daughter's birthday? Try a Spa Party!

Girl's Birthday Spa Party

Have your daughter feel like a princess on her special day, at the area's only Country Retreat. Whether it's a few friends or a group, make it a day she'll remember forever. Day includes but not limited to:

Gentle pineapple herbal facials
Paraffin fun dip
Chocolate fountain with strawberries
Snacks and punch
$275.00 for five girls
Additional girls at $55.00 
*prices subject to vary

36 Oaks Country Retreat
6963 Gibson Canyon Road
Vacaville, CA 95688
Open 7 Days By Appointment Only

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

History and Background of Hot Stone Massage


Massage is perhaps the oldest form of hands-on-healing known to humans, easily pre-dating written records. For millennia, people from virtually every culture have used a combination of touch, heat (thermotherapy) and stones as therapeutic tools. It's pretty safe to say that almost every culture has either used heat and/or stones to have some sort of healing effect on the body - whether it's using stones directly on the body like we do in a Hot Stone Massage, or indirectly, similar to a structure like Stonehenge affecting the body energetically.

Most therapists who incorporate heated stones into their massage routine agree that the Chinese, Native Americans and Hawaiians have played a major role in how Stone Therapy is applied today (although the Egyptians, Ayurvedic Medicine, Pacific Islanders and many other cultures are also said to have used stones in their healing arts).

Traditional uses of stones

One of the first recorded uses of stones for healing was by the Chinese. Prior to the invention of metal acupuncture needles, ancient Traditional Chinese Medical (TCM) practitioners regularly used various shaped and sharpened stones to treat disease. These stones were known as 'Bian Stones', and were used to prick, pierce and bleed various points on the body (as well as lancing boils and performing other superficial procedures). The Chinese also used heat, in the form of 'moxabustion' (burning 'mugwort' - a dried herb - over acupuncture points), to increase the yang/heat in the body and have a healing effect on patients. Moxabustion is still used today by almost all TCM practitioners.

Undoubtedly, both Bian Stones and moxabustion were used together in the same treatment; however there are differing opinions when it comes to the specific use of stones to massage the body. TCM practitioners did 'scrape' various muscles and meridians with jade tools (and other hard objects) to treat different diseases. This was/is known as 'Gua Sha', and is still practised today.

The Native Americans had many rituals which involved the use of stones. One of the more well-known rituals involved placing heated stones (generally basalt) into a tepee-like structure, otherwise known as a 'Sweat Lodge'. This practice was used to cleanse and heal the body and mind. Several other cultures, including the Romans, had a similar idea, leading to the development of modern-day Saunas. Another Native American ritual used a heated stone that was wrapped in cloth/bark. This warm stone was placed onto the lower abdomen of a woman who was menstruating, in order to relieve cramps (women today employ this same principle when they use a hot water bottle).

Heated stones were perhaps even more frequently used in traditional Hawaiian healing practices. Customary uses included wrapping heated stones in 'ti-leaves', a special type of leaf with therapeutic properties. These wrapped stones were then placed on sore areas of the body in order to reduce pain - similar to using a heat pack or poultice. Hot stones were also placed in shallow pits and covered with these same leaves. The patient would then lie on top of the leaves, allowing the healing properties to infuse into the body.

Volcanic stones are also said to have been rubbed over the body after a traditional Hawaiian Kahuna/Lomi-Lomi massage (in the Hawaiian language, Lomi-Lomi simply means 'to knead/rub/massage'). Due to the coarseness of the stones used, this was perhaps less of a massage technique and more of an exfoliation. The Hawaiians are one of the most closely linked cultures to modern-day Stone Therapy.

There are also endless references to the use of gems, crystals and other types of stones by many cultures throughout the history of healing.

About modern-day Hot Stone Massage

Modern-day Stone Therapy, a truly unique style of massage, has been gaining popularity throughout the world after being 'discovered' in the United States in 1993. The story revolves around a massage therapist named Mary Nelson, who was suffering from repetitive use injuries in the shoulders/wrists. She was having a sauna with her niece who was about to receive a massage, and was 'called' to use the stones. Mary chose some of the smoother stones and used them in the massage. It felt great (for the client as well as the therapist) and thus Stone Therapy as we know it today was born. This first style of modern-day Stone Therapy was/is called 'LaStone Therapy'.

Mary 'channelled' much of the information about LaStone Therapy from her Native American spirit guide. This is one of the reasons why many Spas/Salons and journalists think that Stone Therapy is a 'traditional' Native American treatment. Although LaStone Therapy is based on Native American culture, it is much more accurate to say that modern-day Stone Therapy is a combination of Chinese, Native American and Hawaiian healing principles (as well as the many other cultures who somehow used heat and/or stones in their healing arts).

What to expect during a Hot Stone Massage

A modern-day Hot Stone Massage (also sometimes called Hot Rocks Massage) will usually consist of the therapist placing heated stones (usually basalt stones ) of various shapes/sizes onto the client's body (for safety, most of the time these 'placement' stones won't be in direct contact with the skin, instead they will be placed onto a towel to buffer the heat). These stones are placed onto different points (chakras, energy points, sore muscles, etc), depending on the style of Hot Stone Massage or Stone Therapy.

Whilst these placement stones are warming and activating specific areas, the therapist will take several other heated stones and begin massaging a different area of the body. The heat from the stones is released deep into the muscles, greatly enhancing the massage. It is said that one stroke with a heated stone is equivalent to ten normal massage strokes! Some therapists will also incorporate cold stones (usually marble) into their treatment which, although not quite as relaxing as the heated stones, do have a part to play for many conditions. A typical Hot Stone Massage will take 60 to 90 minutes.

Most people who have a Hot Stone Massage will be 'blown away' by the level of relaxation that is achieved. Some clients will have vivid dreams or even 'out-of-body' experiences. It is usually a very grounding, relaxing and healing experience. Apart form the deep level of relaxation, Hot Stone Massage is also great to incorporate into Remedial or Deep Tissue massage. Not only does the client receive the benefits, but when practiced correctly, the therapist will reduce the strain placed on their hands and wrists.

Practically every Spa in Europe, America and Australia offers Hot Stone Massage or Stone Therapy on their menu. The number of different styles however, is almost as varied as the stones themselves.

As with all forms of massage, it is important that therapists undertake professional Hot Stone Massage training. Check with the Spa, Salon or therapist before your treatment to ensure you are getting the best massage from the most qualified therapist.

Philip Cook is the founder of Hahana Stone Massage, Australia's leading supplier of Hot Stone Massage products and training.
He is also the author of the Hahana Stone Massage Training Manual (ISBN: 978-0-9807270-1-2) and the Hahana Practical Training DVD (ISBN: 978-0-9807270-0-5)
Hahana Stone Massage supplies Hot Stone Massage Kits, Basalt & Marble Stone Sets, Stone Heaters and Accessories.
Philip has been teaching Hot Stone Massage and Stone Therapy for about 10 years.
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Sunday, July 7, 2013

Girlfriend's Spa Retreat

Girlfriend's Spa Retreat
A Four Hour Stay - Including a 1 Hour Massage, Herbal Facial, Hand & Foot Softening, and Snacks!

$125.00 per person

To reserve please call 707-447-8037 or visit

Monday, July 1, 2013

Birthday - Anniversary or "Just Because" Package

One Hour Massage
Citrus Salt Glow
Herbal Facial Massage
Gift Basket
Decadent Candle lit tub soak
Catered Snack

*Custom packages available

To reserve this package please call 707-447-8037 or visit