The IMAGE team investigates alternative therapies to try out this year; whether you're in need of some extra TLC, or you're looking for new ways to relax
The Sound Alternative
Those who think they simply just cannot meditate, here is a special recommendation for you: Sound healing. You lie in a warm, dimly-lit studio - blankets and pillows recommended as you won't be practising any positions other than the sleep one here - and your ?healer? uses Tibetan bowls, gongs, Shamanic drumming and chanting, toning and overtone singing to administer powerful vibrations and sound frequencies to the body and mind to help bring you to a deep sense of relaxation and harmony. Marta Toropow runs workshops in her Hill of Tara studio and at Yoganamara in Skerries, sound-healing.ie; yoganamara.com.
Go With The Flow
Feeling blocked? Bioenergy therapy is worth investigating. It works to balance the bio-field, the electromagnetic field within and around all organisms, and not just humans. Therapists are trained to identify and move blockages through a number of techniques, mainly using a series of hand movements. Its advocates describe it as a life-changing experience, which can boost the immune system, restore positivity and help you be happier. See bio-energy.ie for a list of therapists.
A facelift massage (or facial rejuvenation) is regarded as the most non-invasive and natural face-lift you can have, and is known to relieve tension and promote harmony in the body. The therapist will ask questions about your lifestyle and health and will then massage your face, using herbal oils, applying pressure to specific points to reduce stress-induced blockages and help reduce frown lines with regular messages. Anything that turns back the years, while reducing stress, is a winner in our books. See massageireland.org to find a therapist.
Craniosacral Therapy is a form of bodywork that sees practitioners use a light, hands-on approach to manipulate the synarthrodial joints of the cranium, which helps regulate the flow of cerebrospinal fluid and alleviate tension and stress?and enhance the body's natural healing abilities. It is regarded as a very subtle but effective treatment and is often practised on babies who have had a difficult or an instrument delivery. Visit the Irish Association of Craniosacral Therapists to find a practitioner, IACST.ie
If you would like to live your life to its fullest potential and reconnect with feelings, holotropic breathwork may be for you. Devised by Stan and Christina Grof, it involves ancient techniques using breath and music to facilitate greater psychological opening and is regarded as an exercise in self-exploration and self-discovery. Shamanic journeys, past life experiences and mystical awareness may become possible, as well as the release of energetic blockages. See holotropicbreathworkireland.com for details of Jean Farrell's workshops in Westport.