Updated: Feb 23, 2022
Spiritual wellness, when traditional spa treatments aren't enough.
Let’s talk about spiritual wellness. In a not so distant past, symptoms and ailments were the leading indicator of a physiological disruption in the human body. It was pretty cut and dry. But then western medicine started looking a little closer at eastern medicine and lines began to blur. The same is starting to happen with the mainstream spa industry, at the same prolonged and drawn out speed. Luckily, for the rest of us who believe there may just be something to the idea of treating the whole person, we can now experience metaphysical treatments at the spa…in Vegas.
Canyon Ranch Spa + Fitness, inside the Venetian Resort Las Vegas, is known for its luxurious treatments and products. After all, it’s the largest and one of the most well-known spas in the world. But they’ve recently started incorporating eastern medicine and holistic techniques to complement the cutting-edge technology they are known for. When we sat down with Canyon Ranch’s Vice President of Spa, Fitness & Beauty, Deirdre Strunk, the reasoning was quite simple.
“Think about the amount of people who come into Las Vegas and the people that come from all over the world, you have to really be able to speak to all of them.” It really came down to being able to offer a more well-rounded approach to wellness to people from all walks of life.
Think of it like this. Have you been feeling out of whack? Like something isn’t quite right but you can’t quite put your finger on it. If you’re a believer in energy and the ancient ideology of chakras, maybe you need to have them balanced. You may not have thought of it before because most spas aren’t including this on their list of services. Are you experiencing chronic pain or arthritis? You may want to try acupuncture. This 2,500-year-old treatment found in Chinese medicine is the process of inserting several thin needles right into the top layer of the skin until you sort of look like a pin cushion. Don’t worry, it doesn’t hurt nearly as bad as it sounds. The spa even offers energy healing sessions with a certified reiki master. If you hadn’t noticed yet, this is not your typical Vegas spa experience.
What is chakra balancing?
A chakra balancing can either be performed by a practitioner or on oneself and involves quieting the mind to produce a meditative state of consciousness. Through a combination of massage, essential oils, healing crystals or stones, visualizations and sometimes mantras, the body's seven main chakras can be healed and realigned to restore harmony within the mind, body and spirit.
The chakra balancing massage begins with low lighting, chimes playing softly and a rose and lotus flower anointment. You’ll lie face down on the table and ayurvedic Dosha oils will be applied to each of your body’s energy centers that fall along your spine. This is to open the flow of your energy in each one of the chakras, kind of like turning on a faucet. Your treatment specialist with also use a Kansa wand, an ancient Indian tool used to draw acidity out of the skin and balance the pH. The wands are believed to put an end to discomfort and unease because they’re high in alkaline.
What's it like to have your chakras balanced?
The massage itself is deep and soothing, almost inducing a meditative state in your mind where it feels as if you are unbound to your body and you can see different swirls of colors. It’s almost as if the Northern Lights were accessible behind your eyelids. Like you're watching swirls of colors bleed into each other like a kaleidoscope or lava lamp. Although it’s not certain if everyone sees the chakra colors, we are happy to report it worked for us. You’ll also be asked to participate in some visualizations while semi-precious stones are placed on your chakras to bring a greater sense of peace and clarity. The treatment ends with a traditional Kansa foot bowl massage to encourage grounding.
What should you add to your chakra balancing?
As a bonus recommendation, we suggest taking it one step further and adding a ritual bath. There are a few different ones to choose from, but the ritual baths take place in massive copper soaking tubs that have been infused with essential oils and botanicals. You can add exfoliating scrubs, fragrant bath salts, rose petals and even ice-cold sage compresses for your face if you get too warm and begin to sweat. Take it from us, this will be the best bath you’ve ever had.
So, what would we come back for? The reiki healing, the abhyanga which is performed by two therapists simultaneously using warm sesame oils to release toxins and enhance immunity, and of course the ashiatsu massage. This deep massage is the one we’ve all seen on tv where the therapist swings from the rafters while walking on your back. Just kidding, this is not that kind of establishment. The therapist uses bars that are suspended overhead to balance while using their feet to stimulate your circulation and release sore muscles. Now that's a vacation memory you won't soon forget.