The Well's elite team of massage therapists has advanced training in a wide range of bodywork modalities. Swedish and deep tissue techniques form the basis for our therapeutic sessions, and practitioners tailor sessions according to each client's needs and goals. Many practitioners incorporate Eastern modalities (acupressure, shiatsu, reflexology, Reiki, Thai) or advanced Western techniques (neuromuscular/triggerpoint therapy, positional release/strain counterstrain, myofascial release) in their practice as well. Not sure what kind of massage you want? Read more about the modalities we offer:
Active Isolated Stretching incorporated targeted positioning, stretching and lengthening of key muscle groups. Developed by Aaron Mattes, Active Isolated Stretching (AIS) is a dynamic system for improving flexibility and overall wellbeing. The benefits of facilitated stretching are well known, helping to reduce the chances of muscle injury, strengthening tendon resistance and increasing blood circulation. (For an AIS session, book with Dan Bradley.)
Acupressure is a form of bodywork similar to acupuncture, with the aim of stimulating specific points along the energy lines of the body to establish overall health and vitality by balancing the Qi (energy) flow. Unlike acupuncture, the therapist manually applies pressure to the specific points rather than needling, producing similar therapeutic results.
Craniosacral Therapy is a gentle yet powerful technique that is effective in releasing neck pain, back pain, and mental stress (among other things). It does this by optimizing the movement of cerebrospinal fluid through the spine and around the skull. Developed by physician William Sutherland, this therapy provides a very soothing and relaxing healing experience. (For a craniosacral session, book with Nicole Maisel).
Deep Tissue Massage is a form of bodywork that aims to relieve tension in the deeper muscular layers of the body. Deep tissue massage is highly effective for releasing chronic stress areas due to misalignment, repetitive motion, and lingering past injuries. Due to the nature of deep tissue work, open communication during the session is crucial to make sure you don’t get too uncomfortable.
Infant Massage is a style of bodywork designed specifically to promote the healthy development of your infant. Caring human touch is crucial for a healthy thriving baby, and the benefits of massaging your infant are potent and numerous. Many infants show improved growth and development of the brain and nervous system. Infant massage has also been shown to improve the quality of a baby's sleep, as well as strengthening babies' immune systems. Infant massage helps parents, too, by learning to read baby's cues, forming closer bonds, and supporting the psychological and emotional transitions associated with early parenthood. Elizabeth Shrader talks more the benefits of daily practice of infant massage:
Medical Massage is treatment specifically directed to resolve a condition diagnosed by your physician, chiropractor, or physical therapist. The therapists employs a variety of modalities during the treatment, focusing only on the specific areas of the body related to the diagnosis. This approach enhances the body’s natural self-healing process and can reduce the needed recovery time from injury. Following an initial assessment session, we usually schedule three 30-minute sessions over a 2-3 week period.
Myofascial Release is a form of soft tissue therapy intended to eliminate pain, increase range of motion, and rebalance the entire body. The therapist uses various massage techniques to stretch the fascia and release the bonds that exist between the fascia, muscles and bones. Fascia is the connective tissue that links and envelops all muscles, organs, and skeletal structures of the body. Direct myofascial release may involved deep tissue work. Indirect release applies controlled, steady pressure to gently stretch the fascia, allowing for increased blood circulation and pain relief.
Positional Release is a form of neuromuscular therapy where the therapist gently moves the body into a position that allows the tightened muscle to become slackened for a period of 90-120 seconds. The muscle fibers "reset" to a non-stress condition, thereby restoring balance, comfort and functionality. This "fold and hold" technique, akin to osteopathic strain-counterstrain, is particularly effective with muscles that are in discomfort and too sore for traditional massage techniques or on tissues that are non-responsive to other methods. (For a positional release session, book with Elizabeth Shrader.)
Reiki is a Japanese form of energy work that cleanses and balances the energy system in the body. As a result, the body's natural self-healing mechanisms strengthen, helping to establish optimum health. During a session, the therapist works directly with your energy field to remove blockages, detoxify your system, and restore your vital life force energy. Reiki utilizes a gentle laying on of hands to conduct the necessary energy force between practitioner and client. The benefits of Reiki range from the release of habitual mental/emotional stress to alleviating chronic pain.
Reflexology is a type of bodywork that focuses on applying pressure to the specific nerve zones in the feet, hands and/or ears. Unlike foot massages aimed at relieving tension in the musculoskeletal structures of the foot, reflexology is a more in-depth session designed to harmonize the entire body. According to Eunice Ingham's "zone reflexology" theory, every part of the human body is mapped into the feet and hands and stimulation of these areas may promote health and homeostasis in the corresponding organ, muscle, or joint. Reflexology treatments may be effective for conditions such as allergies, headaches, and depression.
SEVA Stress Release is a simple acupressure procedure given through the clothed body to a person who is seated or lying down. The therapist applies firm yet gentle finger pressure in a sequence to 16 specific points on the body. No needles are involved and it does not produce pain. The session takes about 15-20 minutes to complete. It is a profoundly effective tool for calming the body, mind, emotions and spirit.
The SEVA (pronounced "SAY-va") Stress Release Protocol was developed by the faculty of Soul Lightening Acupressure following the events of September 11, 2001. Created as a gift to the world to relieve suffering, SEVA was first taken to New York City and delivered to those who endured such tremendous shock and stress during that time. Since then, SEVA has been used in diverse settings, including at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in DC. Because the SEVA Stress Release Protocol is noninvasive, requires no special equipment, is simple to perform, and only takes a few minutes to receive, it can be given to virtually anyone in virtually any setting. It is an extremely useful and accessible tool for addressing a wide range of needs, including general relaxation or extreme shock or stress.
Sports Massage is bodywork for highly active people who engage in athletics. Engaging in sports is harsh on the body and can often lead to injuries in both the short and long term. Sports Massage enhances performance and prolongs a sports career by helping to prevent injury, reduce pains and swelling in the body, relax the mind, increase flexibility, and dramatically improve recovery rates. Sports Massage is also highly effective in aiding the rapid recovery of an athlete from an injury by encouraging greater kinesthetic awareness and in turn promoting the body's natural immune function.
Stone Therapy is bodywork where the therapist applies deep penetrating heat and/or alternating cold from specialized stones (high iron content basalt for hot stones; cooling white quartz for cold stones). The therapist places stones on strategic areas on your skin and uses hand stones for more penetrating massage pressure. The physiological benefits of alternating hot and cold to the body have long been scientifically and medically proven. Stone therapy delivers a profound expansion and contraction within your circulatory system, improving the function of your lymphatic and immune systems, and enhancing your body’s self-healing mechanisms. This style of bodywork takes you into deep states of relaxation, releasing stress and anxiety, detoxifying the body, and balancing your nervous system.
Swedish Massage, the foundation for Western-style integrative massage technique, is a relaxing and therapeutic style of bodywork. It combines oils or lotion with an array of strokes such as effleurage, petrissage, friction, cross-fiber friction, rolling, kneading, and tapotement to help the body improve circulation of blood, lymph and interstitial fluids. The benefits of this type of bodywork are wide-ranging and include relief from aches and pains, decreased stress levels in the body, enhanced mental clarity, lowered blood pressure, and greater flexibility.
Thai Massage is more energizing and vigorous than many other forms of massage therapy. This modality stems from the physical therapies of Thailand, using a combination of compression techniques, acupressure and isometric stretching. The session takes place on a thick comfy mat on the floor and the therapist uses hands, knees, legs, and feet to move the client into a series of yoga-like postures and stretches. No oil is applied, and the client remains fully dressed throughout the session. A single Thai massage session will release stress, relieve pain, and help you function more effectively at work and home. Astra's own personal blend of Thai Herbal Compresses can be added to your session for an additional $10.
Trigger Point Therapy is a style of bodywork that focuses on stimulating and releasing the body's “trigger points,” tender areas of tension similar to acupressure points, except they occur in the belly of the muscle tissue rather than along the energy pathways of the body. These trigger points are built up throughout a person’s life due to physical, mental, and/or emotional stress and may create referred pain to other areas of the body. During a trigger point therapy session, the therapist first applies focused pressure to create an ischemic environment around the trigger point, then releases the pressure to facilitate blood and lymph flow and removal of accumulated cellular waste. This process can be quite painful at times, yet the effects are lasting and profoundly transformative.