Massage is an incredibly nurturing thing that you can do for your body. It can be relaxing and detoxifying, meditative and cathartic. Compression brings oxygen and blood flow to muscles, and it can increase movement around stiff joints. It can detox by stimulating your lymphatic system and flushing waste. Massage styles of Lomi Lomi, Swedish and Thai are very tangible studied modalities to the muscle and body. There are some lesser known modalities of massage that specialize in energy, surroundings or specific parts of the body. Some of these therapies call on the healing energies of the universe, Mother Nature and the inner self, but they can all be found on Maui.
When veteran massage therapist Vicki Sorenson discovered Ashiatsu–a deep tissue massage done with the feet–on the Big Island three years ago, she knew instantly that she was on to something.
“I already had 20 years of professional massage under my belt,” says Sorenson. “But it was like learning massage all over again.”
Sorenson says she discovered the style on Youtube, and found a teacher from Sacramento. She calls her therapy DeepFeet Bar Therapy. She dispenses a deep, gliding compression massage with her feet, while she’s supported by parallel bars over the massage table.
“My feet have always been unusually dexterous and supple and I’d been searching for a way to put them to work for me,” says Sorenson. “My ideal client is a large, muscular athlete who’s craving deep work but can never find it. However, I work on people of all sizes. The overhead bars allow me to be very exacting and subtle with the application of my weight. You can find me at Lumeria Maui, or at my studio in Makawao, DeepFeetMaui.com.”
For Jen Lighty, Janzu Water Massage brought her back to health after being told she needed surgery for ulcerative colitis. After several trips to the hospital and facing a life on pharmaceuticals, she sought alternatives. When aquatic therapy paved the way to her recovery, she in turn became a pupil of the healing art.
“The man who became my teacher, Janzu Master Sol Naciente, is the primary figure in the Janzu community in Latin America responsible for carrying on its legacy since its creator, Juan Pathik Villatoro, passed on about 10 years ago,” says Lighty. “I won’t go into every breakthrough I had in my sessions with Janzu, but I will tell you that I was finally able to release the emotional traumas that had manifested in me as ulcerative colitis and that I’m now cured, free of medications, and living the life of my dreams as a Janzu healer.”
Janzu is well known in Mexico where Lighty learned, but she’s the first to offer it here. The process involves wearing a swimsuit and nose plug and meeting at a large natural body of water, fresh or salt water. You float in a passive state while the therapist moves your body through the water. As sessions progress, your therapist may take you under the water.
“It’s an opportunity to trust and surrender, to be held and nurtured in an unconditional, non-judgmental way,” say Lighty. “As the client lets go, a state of deep meditation is experienced, even by people who have never meditated before. Janzu can help release birth trauma that keeps us from being present and connected to people and our planet itself. It’s also a very healing practice for people with PTSD or any other emotional traumas gained from life experience. Having said that, it’s not just for the traumatized. Sometimes Janzu is just pure bliss, a reunion with the Great Mother where we remember our connection to her with joy and ease.”
At Padma’s Healing Heaven in Haiku, Xiaofang Chen Padma says energy healing is the future of medicine. Padma uses purity of intention, aura, color therapy, cleansing light and cellular focus for her quantum touch therapy sessions.
“In 2006 I read a book called Quantum Touch,” says Padma. “It simply explained how love is the healing energy. As a native Chinese, I grew up with a culture in Qi-gong and nature–how the body universe and our outer universe correspond to each other. I then attended their workshops and finished their course of being a practitioner and instructor. I’ve done energy work now for 10 years.”
Padma’s shop offers a healing circle for men and women on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 7:30 pm, hand and foot reflexology and light energy healing and workshops. Padma says energy healing is all about channeling the light–the stronger you believe, the more powerful you can be.
“The power within each and every one of us is infinite and limitless,” says Padma. “If the mind can stop chatting for a moment, if we could learn from our own body talk, we would learn all the knowledge we need to know. Our hands have the most nerve endings more than any other parts of the body. The ability to feel is our common ground. To love is to give what is needed. When the hand feels the need, the mind and the heart will generate the needed light. Usually we take things too seriously and think things to death. Loosen up the mind, so we can take this ride fearlessly.”
For the Inner Peace Movement, finding your spiritual center in the universe paves the path to individual healing. It involves becoming one with your intuition. Shannon Paapanen, a lecturer in the Inner Peace Movement, says she teaches techniques that unfold your gifts of psychic and spiritual perception, allowing people to gain a bigger picture of who they are, which lets them relax and heal themselves.
“You learn techniques to raise your energy, feel less tired and release stress,” says Paapanen. “You learn ways to direct your energy to accomplish more while still maintaining a sense of balance and fulfillment in life. Techniques to unfold your clairaudience (intuition), clairvoyance (vision), prophecy (inner knowing, premonition, dreams) and feeling (sensory sensitivity or gut instinct). The training helps you communicate more clearly with your guardian angels or spirit guides.”
Paapanen will be leading a seminar on the Inner Peace Movement on Feb. 23 at the Makawao Elementary School at 7pm. She says if you ever feel any self-doubt or want a better understanding of the world, this may be something to try.
“I hope people get a better understanding of themselves,” says Paapanen. “A feeling of more security about who they are and what they know. A feeling of excitement about the possibilities in life and a sense of a bigger picture and expanded horizons.”
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