Lately, for a number of different reasons, I've been dealing with above average levels of anxiety, which is something that 1 in 4 of us will suffer from at one or more points in our lives. In my attempt to restore balance, I've embarked on quite the journey of discovery, the full details of which you'll get to read about soon enough in IMAGE magazine.
Today, though, I want to share with you my experience of the Lomi Lomi massage at the Dublin Holistic Centre. Well, I'll do my best, as truth be told I'm still floating on an enormous invisible marshmallow and have yet to come down from my high.
For anyone going through any sort of difficult time, regardless of what that difficulty may be, Lomi Lomi will serve only to help you through it. It's so much more than your average massage, but rather, an experience centred around healing, for your body and your mind, and it's unlike anything I've ever tried before.
My treatment began with a quick chat with the lovely Eva, who, at the risk of sounding like a total tree hugger, I felt an instant connection with; she wasn't about to massage me in the same way she massaged ten people before me, she carefully considered my own personal situation, the reasons that had brought me to her, before setting me up on the massage table. With this tradition, no two massages are the same, the practitioner relies on their own intuition to guide their arms and hands around each person's body as required.
First of all, I was completely naked for the massage (bar a little bit of material where the massage doesn't go), and I LOVED it. This might be a bit disconcerting to some people at first but trust me, your body and mind will enter such a deep state of relaxation, you wouldn't care if you had three boobs.
Originating in Polynesia,?Lomi is characterised by continuous long, flowing, sweeping strokes that, I'm told, are reminiscent of the ebb and flow of ocean waves. If you insist on keeping your knickers on, you'll only restrict those long, gorgeous strokes that can travel form your neck to your toes in one swift move. That's why it's better to go commando. The massage then works gently yet deeply into the muscles enabling you to 'relax, surrender and simply be'.
Some movements even went under my body as I lay on my back, which is something I never dreamed could be so comforting. The massage lasted 90 minutes, with roughly one hour on the back and 30 minutes focusing on the front accompanied by some unusual, trance-inducing Polynesian music. Between the gentle massage on the tummy, the light, invigorating pressure on my chest (where we hold a lot of our anxiety) and the unlocking of all tension around my face and neck, I'm surprised I didn't pass out entirely.
If you're open to it and prepared to leave all cynicism at the door, Lomi Lomi can be an incredibly uplifting, energising and liberating experience that allows you to break through various blockages in your mind and body, let go of whatever it is you've been holding on to (as our bodies hold all of our past experiences, good and bad) and give your energy a new, more centred direction.
I left feeling more peaceful than I've felt in months, and sure enough, I slept like a baby. I really can't speak highly enough of Eva Lennox in particular at The Dublin Holistic Centre, and I'll be counting down the days 'til I can get back in to her for some more of the good stuff.
An oasis of calm in the heart of Dublin city, and without a doubt, the best massage I've ever had.
A 90 minute Lomi Lomi treatment costs €90
Caroline Foran @carolineforan