Here at Newtown Massage and Spa we are always seeking out new ways to provide unique and beneficial experiences to our clients that are not available elsewhere. It is for this reason that my colleague Joanne and I decided to learn Ashiatsu Oriental Bar Therapy®, and we are proud to be among the few in the area to offer this innovative take on a traditional massage that is branded by its founder as the “deepest, most luxurious massage on the planet”.

So what exactly is ashiatsu? This is a barefoot massage technique, consisting of deep compression and long, flowing strokes to stretch and elongate the muscles and spine, thus opening up the spaces between the vertebrae. As therapists, we use bars above the massage table for support and balance. For more details, including photos and videos, you can also check out the founder’s

Back in massage school, this was one of those modalities that I felt it would be fascinating to learn, but unfortunately it was not offered as part of the curriculum. I first tried it at an Asian massage place and was hooked by the deep foot pressure that seemed to magically iron out my aches and pains. I’m also the type of client who loves trying things that are unique and different, so ashiatsu really fit the bill.

And so it seemed rather ironic when I joined the team at Newtown Massage and Spa and my boss told me that they were planning on putting bars on the ceiling as one of the therapists had expressed an interest in learning ashiatsu. As it turned out, she didn’t learn it, but my colleague did and she decided to sign herself up for it. Excited to have a buddy to go to class with (learning is always more fun together!), I promptly signed myself up and so a fun and eye-opening time began.

Learning any new modality is an interesting experience, and ashiatsu all the more so because many therapists are so accustomed to using their hands and forearms. That said, Joanne and I are also Thai massage therapists, a
modality where it is more customary to use your feet and so ashiatsu was a good fit for us.

If you’re wondering whether ashiatsu would be a good fit for you, I can tell you that we have gotten some rave
  reviews from the clients who have been lucky enough to try it, and I’d like to share with you some of the benefits:

  • Feet are larger than hands, making them ideal for performing broader, deeper strokes on larger muscle groups such as the legs and glutes.
  • In addition, the large area of the foot is less painful than pointy elbows/thumbs for performing trigger point work.
  • Great for those who feel that deep tissue work doesn’t get deep enough as the therapist can use the gravity of the bars to impart deeper pressure.
  • Results in improved posture and movement.
  • Imparts deep relaxation and stimulates the body’s lymphatic system.
  • Many clients feel the deep compression strokes resemble a foam roller, rolling out their aches and pains.
  • An excellent choice for runners and other athletes as it enables more targeted work on the hip and leg muscles such as glutes, IT band, gastrocs and peroneals.

So all that remains for me to ask you is: when are you going to try ashiatsu? We are currently offering it at a special introductory rate of $75 for 60 minutes and $100 for 90 minutes. And if this is your first ever massage at Newtown Massage and Spa, you are lucky enough to be able to take advantage of our special offer of just $45 for 60 minutes. You can book here. We look forward to hearing from you!


Last weekend was Valentine’s Day, and at Newtown Massage and Spa we feel this is a great opportunity to remind you of the importance of self-love. Perhaps one of your New Year’s resolutions was to take better care of yourself, but when is the last time you truly took time to relax? In today’s society, we live in a world of non-stop tasks, responsibilities and activities. But does it ever occur to us if we don’t take time to slow down now and again, we may at some point be unable to live life to our full potential? I’m here to tell you that burnout is a very real syndrome, and it taught me some valuable lessons. Not least the fact that whole-body (holistic) health involves not just a balanced body, but also a balanced mind.

As someone who has been through her own healing journey – as both a sick person and a healer (or rather facilitator of healing) – I can honestly say what truly stuck in my mind is how much conventional medicine neglects our emotional and mental wellbeing. What strikes me with certain massage clients is that some of them seem to think of massage as a “guilty pleasure” where they need to “sneak away” to get one. Many of them live busy lives with their high-powered jobs and children who keep them on their toes, and so massage is not always their first priority. Indeed, we often put others before ourselves, while foolishly forgetting the analogy of “putting on your own life vest before you help your neighbor”. After all, if you burn yourself out, you won’t be able to help anyone, least of all yourself!

If we take time to calm our mind through practices such as massage, medication and yoga we are able to perform our daily jobs more effectively and with less stress. The fact is that, thanks to today’s “go-go-go” mentality, many of us are stuck in “fight or flight mode”, where our body’s sympathetic nervous system is running in overdrive. This means that we are constantly on edge and ready to go, but the flipside is that our parasympathetic nervous system is insufficiently activated, and this is vital for us to enjoy proper rest and digestion. Long-term overstressing of the sympathetic nervous system causes elevated cortisol levels. This leads to weight gain and inflammation, and ultimately to adrenal fatigue.

One solution to this problem is to treat our bodies to sufficient rest and recuperation, and this is where massage comes in. Our Licensed Massage Therapists at Newtown Massage and Spa are dedicated to giving you an unforgettable bodywork experience. One effect of massage is that it activates your parasympathetic nervous system, allowing your body to rest and digest, as described above. That’s also why oftentimes your stomach will rumble during a massage.

Being sick taught me that true health and wellness are about the right balance of components. However, I have found that many conventional doctors fail to comprehend this, and are all too keen to prescribe prescription after prescription. What truly helped me was holistic medicine. Holistic medicine takes a whole-body approach, which is precisely what we do at
Wrightstown Health & Fitness, where Newtown Massage and Spa is located. Not only do we offer massage, but also chiropractic, acupuncture, nutrition, personal training and yoga. It’s a convenient choice for clients who would like all practitioners under one roof. And we offer the added bonus that our practitioners truly communicate with each other to ensure everyone knows the full picture about your health. Furthermore, if you are looking to use multiple services, packages such as our affiliate Inspire Nutrition’s popular weight loss and fitness program, The Blitz, offer a very reasonably priced combo of personal training, nutritional counseling and protein shakes, of which a large portion may be covered by your insurance!

Happy belated Valentine’s! Remember: you don’t need a specific day to practice self-love. It’s important to do so all year round.

1. When was the last time you put yourself before others?

2. Recharge yourself. You can’t pour from an empty cup.
3. There are many different massage
modalities. Take the opportunity to try a new one.
4. Better range of motion and less tightness result in more effective and less painful
gym workouts.
5. Relaxed muscles result in more effective and longer lasting
chiropractic adjustments.
6. There’s a massage for everyone: whether your goal is pure relaxation, pain relief, better flexibility or preparing for a sports event.
7. Massage is a much healthier way to relieve pain than popping painkillers.
8. Improve your circulation and skin tone.
9. Massage is a wonderful reward for hard work, a big achievement or after a traumatic or stressful experience.
10 Get your nervous system to relax from permanent stress for improved rest and digestion.
11. You’ve never had one before and always wanted to try one. At Newtown Massage and Spa, your first massage is just $45!

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