In the last ten years, a new trend has emerged where people are increasingly turning to physical therapies as a means of coping with life’s stresses, health concerns and mental uneasiness. Perhaps it’s a retort to the increasing dependence on prescription medications and painkillers. Perhaps society is moving away from the ‘disease’ model of healthcare to the ‘wellness’ and prevention model that is ever growing in popularity.
Notably, towards the end of 2016, all-inclusive wellness centres emerged in global health capitals such as Manhattan, Melbourne and Vancouver. This trend doesn’t look like slowing down anytime soon.
From deeply immersive concepts such as saline float tanks to multi-sensory healing experiences such as sound and scent yoga, we see wellness centres taking on a new and holistic approach to health.
Take a considered approach
The difference between an experiential healing centre and a more traditional centre can be put down to mindfulness. That is, consciously participating in our own mental, emotional and spiritual experience in addition to the physical aspects.
Whereas you may consider yoga to be a physical discipline, with some practice crossing over to the spiritual (or more like meditation), a fully immersive yoga experience combines the additional senses of smell, touch and sound as well.
Top Experiential Healing Centres
Elian Zach, WOOM co-creator said that to achieve personal goals, we need to feed and enrich our senses. We need to provide them with as much input and stimulation as possible. Not only should we eat a healthy and balanced diet, we should also take into consideration our emotional and mental senses as well.
Another Manhattan ‘mover and shaker’ is Inscape meditation centre. Founded by Khajak Keledjian, former Intermix CEO, this studio delivers a 360-degree experience covering sound healing, texture, visuals and taste.
Keledjian notes that meditation traditionally focused on spirituality whereas now it has shifted to science. Immersive multisensory experiences are helping people reach their optimal potential, faster. Consider this: is it better to be in a state of ‘being’ or a state of ‘doing’?
Moving along to Vancouver now, we discover HeartQuest Holistic Wellness Centre: a massage centre that combines personal enrichment and spiritual development with physical therapies. From shamanic healing to massage therapy, from cranial sacral therapy to somatic counselling services, this centre describes itself as a warm and sacred oasis that helps you on your quest for wellness.
Down in metropolitan Melbourne, we have a chiropractic centre that draws upon the deep healing philosophies of vitalism and naturalism. What could be more natural than a set of healing hands applying a precise and purposeful adjustment to a problematic spinal joint? Not only does the chiropractor contribute to the treatment, patients are educated on how to maximise their own internal healing capacity.
This concept can be explained perfectly in this quote from Thomas Edison:
“The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will instruct his patient in the care of the human frame, in diet and in the cause and prevention of disease”
Chiropractic care is certainly a ‘hands-on’ approach to healthcare that is also drug and surgery free. The ‘experience’ relates to a chiropractors hands and in the physical touch, stimulating the nerves and other senses.
As well as the chiropractic adjustment, patients may also engage with stretching stations or traction machines that assist in restoring a more normal posture and alignment. Physically pushing and stretching the body back into shape is certainly an experience and one that aims to undo many years of bad posture habits.
More and more people are seemingly turning to manual therapists for help with a range of complaints in addition to back pain. Manual therapies include chiropractic, physiotherapy, massage, acupuncture and other related disciplines.
This year, immerse yourself in health and think outside the box
As we move through this year and prepare to enter the next, expect to see more of this included in your local health or yoga studio. Watch out for multi-disciplinary studios that boast a range of practitioners and services. Why settle for just one approach when a combination of techniques, each unique in their stimulation of the senses, appears to deliver more holistic results.
It would seem that the intention to appeal to all of our senses is a new and better approach to health and healing.
It’s not just about yoga or meditation or that occasional massage. It’s about an experience that enlivens all your senses in a way that helps create positive change.
Remember, the body naturally wants to be healthy and well. We just need to give it the chance to do so.