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How to Incorporate Cost-Effective Massage into your Wellness Routine

Happy Monday! Are you ready for the week? Whether celebrating Easter, Passover, or just the latest episode of Game of Thrones, we could all use a little R&R and tune into how our bodies are feeling.

Y'all already know I'm into DIY self-care (check out my manicure Sundays post) but sometimes you need to (micro) splurge!

One of my favorites ways of doing this is with a massage.

Specifically, I love reflexology.

No matter what style you prefer, here’s just a few of the benefits of massage treatment:

  1. Reduces stress

  2. Relieves tension

  3. Improves circulation

  4. Promotes muscle relaxation

  5. Helps improve posture (This one is huge! How many of us suffer from “texting neck”?)

I used to think that massages were expensive luxuries, until I discovered an incredible reflexology place near my apartment on 8th street and 6th avenue in Manhattan. If you are unfamiliar with reflexology, it is a type of massage that uses pressure on certain parts of the body to produce changes in pain elsewhere. My massage place (Shun Fa Relaxing Center) charged $35 for an hour of full body treatment which even included hot stones!

I have naturally tense muscles, and this coupled with my desk job were a horrible combination for my upper back / thoracic spine area. Incorporating massage into my wellness practice helped relieve so much of the tension that I felt in my shoulders, and made me more conscious of standing up straight!

When I tore my ACL, I went through intense rehabilitation to strengthen the muscles around my knee. Just like every action has an equal and opposite reaction, stretching and relaxation are crucial components of athletic recovery. Massage treatments were a vital part of my rehabilitation - of course I used these sparingly, after consulting my physical therapist, and made sure to let the massage therapist know to take it easy on the injured leg.

When I moved to Chicago, I thought for sure I wouldn’t be able to find a similar reflexology gem. Lo and behold, this weekend I discovered how wrong I was! After perusing Yelp, and found Relax Feet, which offered a $28 / hour for a 30-minute foot + back and shoulder treatment. I went for the first time yesterday and am so happy that I did! I can't wait to take my friends and parents when they visit.

So the next time you think that massages are expensive luxuries - I encourage you to check out reflexology and other massage treatments on Yelp and Groupon. It's amazing what you might find!

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