All for Spas, and Spas for All

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How Spa Services Are Catering to a Wider Population
Spas are wonderful facilities that offer all sorts of comforting and relaxing activities that not only rejuvenate the body, but also set the mind at ease. Traditionally, they offer a bit of respite and allow us to indulge in all sorts of pleasing and soothing practices that have been refined over the years to help preserve youthful beauty and place the mind in spiritual wellbeing. Normal procedures like massages, steam rooms and saunas are still commonplace, but more and more spas are beginning to address the needs of people for whom the spa wasn’t always accessible, such as those with special needs, patients with cancer, and the gender-nonconforming and LGBT. Here are just a few examples of spa facilities that are opening their doors to a wider population.

The modern spa is one which caters to everyone, offering the same relaxation and mood-enhancing experiences to suit all genders. Still, there’s a bias against the transgender, gender-nonconforming and other members of the LGBT community—arguably a population that needs relaxation more than others. Freed Bodyworks in Washington, D.C addresses this need, offering bodywork, reflexology, neuromuscular therapy, reiki and therapeutic massage, as well as mental health services, private yoga sessions and energy work—services that are as beneficial as they are inclusive.

Freed Bodyworks | 1337 Pennsylvania Ave. SE, Washington, DC 20003 | (202) 321-9715 | |

Patients with cancer can be self-conscious about their surgical scars, or be extra-sensitive to spa products with ingredients that can irritate the skin. With the removal of lymph nodes, some massages can lead to a condition called lymphedema, and if the spa serves food, many of those with cancer can’t eat it because of dietary restrictions. Wellness for Cancer is a nonprofit that trains spa therapists on how to provide these special services. The Strata Integrated Wellness Spa, for instance, offers “Well-Being Services & Therapeutic Treatments” such as a “Healing Touch” massage or facial, Lymphatic Enhancement Technology, and General Detoxification. At this rate, there will be many other spas that will do the same thing.

Strata Integrated Wellness Spa at Garden of the Gods Resort | 3320 Mesa Rd., Colorado Springs, CO 80904 | (719) 520-4988; |

Special Needs
Whether the issue is mental or physical, certain conditions require more special training and attention, and not all spas measure up. Services for the elderly, people with mobility issues and those with psychiatric disorders like PTSD are all offered at the WatersMeet Spa & Wellness Center in Minnesota. Other special services are targeted to those diagnosed with fibromyalgia, as well as the hearing impaired, who need special attention on their arms and hands. The spa also offers an Oncology Massage and a Post-Surgery Massage. With research into the benefits of mental stability and overcoming anxiety and stress, placing the mind at ease has never been of more importance, and the calm, naturally soothing environment should be available for everybody. Literally, every body.

WatersMeet Spa & Wellness Center | 400 Cliff House Rd., Lutsen, MN 55612 | (218) 663-7212 | |