Looking for date-night ideas? Tired of the mall?
Until invited to experience one, I had never even heard of a “salt room.” An after-work invitation to visit a new business in town with 10 close colleagues seemed mysterious, intriguing and I was instantly curious.
I had been stuck on the couch for a few days leading up to the scheduled gathering, dealing with an offensive head cold and ear/throat infection. After reneging on the invitation, I was convinced by the host to attend last minute.
With my last ounce of oomph, I pulled it together, dawdled getting dressed, and negotiated my way to Fusion Therapy. It is set back in an aging, shadowy office plaza, appropriately called Pine Park Centre. One step inside the building, however, and there was a shift in the atmosphere.
Welcome to the purely elegant and fresh, airy lobby at Fusion Therapy. I was instantly transported to a page in a favorite home design magazine! Greeted by an enthusiastic and knowledgeable staff, I began to feel better already. Husband and wife team Terry and Gena Schibler are the brains behind this business, and, let me tell you, at this point I had tons of questions (some arguably more urgent than others).
- Am I going to get everyone sick?
- Do you wear shoes?
- What does this salt room look like?
- What do you do in there?
To my wonderment, natural dead sea salt actually creates a sterilized, negative ion environment, three times cleaner than a sterile surgery area in a hospital. Guess I wouldn’t be spreading any germs. It is also known to help in the healing of those suffering from ear, nose and throat illnesses, asthma, bronchitis, cold, flu and more. That’s not all. It is known to assist children, yes you read me right, with skin and respiratory conditions. How do you like them apples?
Shoes off, I was invited to find a restful seat amid the dead sea salt, which was light in color, encasing the entire room (walls included) and felt, under my feet, like stepping onto a pebbly beach. (There are slippers to wear over shoes for those feeling less adventurous.) The room was closed off, the speakers streamed Fun, Fun, Fun by The Beach Boys and the Halotherapy treatment began. Few of us knew what to expect at that moment. I think we were all waiting for the room to explode or the walls to start moving or something else bizarre to happen.
There were lots of nervous giggles and wide eyes, although the single male in the group was one of the most laid back there.
We were all pleasantly surprised when, from a tube in the wall, a steady mist of aerosolized salt, or, micronized medical grade salt flowed. Once I felt a sense of comfort, I stretched my legs out on my NASA-inspired, no-gravity reclining chair, and deliberately focused on my breathing. Anuloma Viloma (or Alternate Nostril Breathing) as modeled by Gena, was encouraged as a way to restore imbalances in the brain and calm emotions. So I began in through the right, out through the left and vice versa.
A primary colored beach ball made its way around the room and some of us even wore sunglasses. I smiled, wondering whether Terry and Gena have clients that go in clad in bikinis and swim trunks. Maybe even a Speedo?
It was quiet, other than the music and light laughter weaving through conversation, and when I closed my eyes, the muffled sounds reminded me of standing in a field of paper white falling snow. I imagined this was what heaven could feel like; light buzzing and humming, blissful alignment with the universe. The sweet, deep edge you balance over before falling asleep.
Upon completion of the 45-minute Dry Saline Therapy session, I experienced a considerable lift in mood, a slight improvement in energy and a gentle cleansing of my nasal passages (which was just what the doctor ordered). Bring on the tissues; let’s kick this sick!
Post treatment, we were all thirsty, so decided to hit up a local spot for some fluid replenishment. There were mixed reviews about instant results among the group, but the overall consensus was that we would go back in a heartbeat. We all appreciated the opportunity to decompress and alleviate the stressors of the week in such a unique and fabulous place.
Inspired by European salt caves, the Suncoast’s premiere dead sea salt treatment center will certainly satisfy your curiosity in new and innovative health and wellness practices. For details on therapeutic and restorative sessions in the salt rooms, visit Fusion Therapy’s website.
If you’re interested in reading more, check out these commonly asked questions – the answers might surprise you. Fusion also offers a number of additional services including massage, infrared therapy, and skincare. Ahem…can I sign up now?!
This is the infrared therapy station.
Here’s a peek at the skin care treatment room, where Gena does a lot of her work.
Had to share the mini shopping cart with you…
Have you ever been to a salt room? Is it something you might like to try?!