Let me tell you a few things most people probably don’t know about me. I was the kid who rubbed Aloe Vera gel onto her scalp straight from the stalk I picked from my parents’ garden while I watched TV. I was the girl who snacked on Kamias, Macopa and Aratelis fruits for kicks. And I was the whacko who handed Nic a shot of pure Calamansi juice and a tablespoon of Moringa powder when she was feeling under the weather. Hey, call me weird but that concoction really worked! Not that I don’t believe in today’s methods and medicine, let’s just say I never really needed to tell my mom to “call the doctor very quick”.
So just imagine my fascination when I learned about the practice of Ayurveda during my Yoga Teacher Training. Look it up on Google and you’ll find that it is the traditional Indian system of medicine. I say it’s the practice of those who want to take charge of their health. Ayurveda means “Life-Knowledge” and when you know enough about your own body, you have the ability to keep it at its best without much effort.
This is the same wisdom Arogya Ayurvedic Center imparts to their clients. They don’t stop at the one or two hours of treatment you go to their center for. Arogya shows you the lifestyle that comes with bringing your Doshas into balance.
I wrote about Doshas in a previous article but I’ll explain it as briefly as possible here too. Each person falls under one or two specific Doshas. There are a few cases where individuals fall under all three. Yes, that makes them divergent (now don’t go calling Jeanine) but Tri-Doshic is a more appropriate term for it. These Doshas are namely Vata, Pitta and Kapha. Read more about Doshas here.
The Arogya Ayurvedic Center offers treatments that bring the three energies into balance. I was told during my conversation with the management that the primary goal of Ayurveda is to sustain a balance of the three, which translates to a vibrant health condition.
When you step into the bright and homey reception of Arogya, you will most likely find Miss Belen, a cheery lady who will make you feel right at home.
And speaking of “home”, the center is a two-storey apartment converted into a space for health and healing. This corner at the waiting area is my most favorite spot.
If you aren’t familiar as to what Dosha type you fall under, you’re lucky because the fun part comes first. You will be asked to answer a short questionnaire, which will reveal which Dosha is dominant in you. Note that we all have all three energies/Doshas running in us but have one among these that is dominant. Any sickness, pain or health problem signifies an imbalance. You will have to be honest and list these down if you are aware of any.
During my recent visit, I was given the most popular Ayurvedic treatment and probably my favorite, the Abhyanga. It is a massage done by two therapists wherein the person lies on a wooden table and poured with loads and loads of warm oil. The long massage strokes were synchronized which felt fantastic and luxurious even though there wasn’t any pressure on the muscles. The massage is done not to soothe muscle aches or pains but to allow the skin to absorb as much oil as possible.
The oil used is the superstar of the treatment. Once absorbed, it acts to gather all the toxins and drive them to your gut, ready for elimination. No matter which one from the selection of 33 oils is used, the warm liquid that seeps into the skin gets on with their task.
Miss Belen likes to say they have their own intellect. Simply put, the oil is specifically chosen depending on your condition to address any health concern you may have.
Of course, just like any other treatment, doing it once is not enough. A regular Abhyanga or warm oil massage is recommended to reap maximum benefits from this Ayurvedic practice. Arogya also recommends not waiting for your body to show signs of illness but rather work to maintain good health by going regularly to detoxify the body.
The drizzling of the warm Sesame Oil infused with herbs and other natural ingredients was the best part for me. Even without the pressure on the muscles, I left with a natural high from being so relaxed.
It didn’t end there though. That night, I slept like a baby. Something I haven’t experienced in months. The same thing happened the following night, and on the third night. I went into deep sleep for around three nights after my visit. I took it as a sign of recuperation.
IN CASE YOU DECIDE TO VISIT
I must be clear that Arogya is not a spa. Its treatments go much deeper than the muscles and fascia being massaged.
There are no fragrant scents to welcome you when you arrive and the oils used are ones that are pure and not mixed with any type of perfume.
A mattress is placed on top of the treatment beds for comfort but if you want to go a little hardcore, you may decide to skip this and go fully traditional in your experience. The place is simple, no frills nor fancy lighting but very clean, quiet (no spa music here, guys) and relaxing. The silence is meditative except for the occasional train hoots and rail noises from a nearby train station.
You only hear this if you are at the second floor, where my room was located. Once you get so into it, you’ll barely hear any sound.
Treatments start at P1700, anything in addition will only cost P1300 each.
Arogya is located at 8398 Mayapis Street, San Antonio Village, Makati City. Visit their website at www.Arogya-Manila.com
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