All Natural is Natural
(and alternative health can be equally healthy)
We’ve already explored a number of what are typically considered “alternative” health practices (meditation, yoga, et al) in the Western world, but more and more we can see that these formerly alt-practices are becoming mainstreamed because of their direct, positive, and effective impact on so many segments of Western culture.
As just one point of reference, prior to its 1970’s US yoga explosion, the practice of yoga was generally regarded in the States as a form of arcane, cult-like “religion”, yet nowadays even any modestly-sized urban center is filled with a selection of popular, busy yoga studios to choose from at affordable prices for all.
So, therefore, we would like to share a brief list of perhaps some of the current practices that may have not achieved the popularity of yoga as of yet, but which we deem worthy of your healthy, stress-reducing consideration.
This ancient yet traditional form of Chinese medicine involves a technique of balancing the energy flow or life force — known as chi or qi — believed to move through the body’s pathways (known as meridians).
By inserting specialized needles into specific points along the body’s meridians, the goal is to re-balance energy flow. While Western scientific research has been lukewarm to acupuncture’s overall efficacy, the practice is now widely regarded to have a significant impact on stress reduction.
Until quite recently regarded strictly as a form of personal luxury “indulgence”, massage therapy is now widely practiced at all levels of athletic performance training as an important key to muscular recovery and injury prevention. In addition, massage therapy offers a number of specific therapies that target and treat specific conditions.
Another formerly considered personal “indulgence” or strictly cultural phenomenon, numerous research studies clearly indicate that hot baths and sauna/spas have definite physiological benefits, in addition to their rather obvious and immediate, if anecdotal, stress-reducing benefits.
Sensory Deprivation Tanks
A sensory deprivation tank, also known as an isolation or flotation tank, is used for restricted environmental stimulation therapy, which studies have shown can lead directly to a number of mental and physical health benefits. These benefits can include- stress reduction, muscular relaxation, pain relief, increased mental focus, and effective treatment for severe anxiety.
Please REMEMBER: Because of the extreme nature of the experience (you will be floating in a sealed tank with zero distractions to all senses), you should consult with your doctor before trying this therapy. In addition to their benefits, sensory deprivation tanks have been reported to in some cases cause hallucinations, or actually increase anxiety.
Network Spinal Analysis
Network Spinal Analysis is widely considered an extension of advanced chiropractic study derived from an evidence-based approach to body awareness and overall wellness Much like chiropractic practice, NSA practitioners employ gentle manipulation of the spinal cord, combined with their ongoing clinical assessments of any necessary spinal refinements which evolve during treatment.
A standard NSA treatment plan includes a schedule of refinements, along with the patient's own self-assessments of both their overall health, wellness, and ongoing physical comfort.