Touch is only part of the equation. Doris Guillory’s massages use an extra sense. The local licensed massage therapist has introduced sound therapy to her downtown practice. “The vibrations are just fabulous – I love it,” she said.
Guillory’s operates Loving Hands Massage, 328 E. Capitol Ave. She practices a technique called intuitive massage, which custom fits individual clients.
Sound therapy is a popular option. Tom Wallace, one of those customers, was full of praise leaving an afternoon session. “I thought it was just magnificent,” he said, nodding his head in satisfaction. “It was the first time I had ever experienced that method. I was expecting a standard massage, and the addition of the bells was a very pleasant surprise.”
Guillory produces sounds during her massages by tapping a series of metal bowls with various motions. While their musical notes sound pleasing, healing power also comes from their vibrations. “The vibrations are just fabulous – I just love it,” she said. “When my clients come in, I just want them to feel safe and loved, that they can leave all their worries behind.”
Adorned with deep red walls and angel chimes, Guillory’s studio has a low-key, New Age vibe. Some of the décor – bamboo plants and a figurine of a Hindu goddess – remind you of eastern religions.
“The vibration just gets into your body,” she said. “It moves through our bodies a lot faster, and it’s so healing.”
First, the masseuse arranges the bowl set. But she doesn’t just scatter them around the table – each has a specific location. The bowls are aligned with the body’s chakras. A chakra is considered a psychic-energy center. The tradition Guillory follows identifies seven of them: root, sacral, solar plexus, heart, throat, third eye and crown.
To start that arrangement: “You want to start with root chakra,” she said, laying a bowl at the foot of the massage table. She makes her way upward, placing the other six bowls in line with the other chakras. Last is crown, aligning just above where the client’s head will lay.
She makes the vibrations with a wand, slowly rubbing around the upper edge of the bowl, then tapping its sides. She uses wands of various shapes and sizes to produce a variety of vibrations.
But she’s quick to clarify her talents lie not in music. “I’m not a musician in any shape or form,” she said with a laugh.
Guillory considers her massage therapy similar to a form of alternative medicine; she compares it to visiting a counselor. The mood boost it provides can help improve physical health along with mental, she said: “You always heal faster if you’re in a more positive frame of mind.”
Guillory first experienced sound therapy in 2008. After that, she gradually began incorporating it into her practice. She enjoys seeing the happier, more relaxed demeanor in her clients when they leave her table after a sound session.
“I love being a massage therapist because it is a thrill to relieve tension and pain from the body and mind of my clients,” she said. “It is so satisfying to see a client get off the table and say, ‘Wow, that was just what I needed.’”
For more information, call 573-230-3866 or visit lovinghandsmassagetherapy.com.