My session with Jennifer Giacomelli (aka Jenabah) of Body Thyme Massage was uplifting, intriguing and inspiring! I've been wanting to experience Jen's Thai massage for many years now; it turns out life has a way of bringing you to people and experiences at exactly the right moment in time and space. When I scheduled with Jen she asked if I would like to try her new modality, Aerial Myo Massage. Sounds intriguing, huh? How could I resist?
Jen’s studio, located in downtown Chelsea, is a sanctuary, decorated with gigantic crystal arrangements and timeless furniture, with Young Living essential oils infusing the air. It had been a while since I’d seen Jen, so we chatted for a while about Thailand, West Africa, dance, massage, and teaching. Then I entered her treatment room and the real fun began. The first thing I noticed was the canopy—a wooden structure securely attached to the walls with aerial silks draped through in various loops. (It turns out that a mutual friend designed and built the structure, which reminds me of the deep connections throughout our community.)
Aerial Myo Massage is an ingenious modality that Jen has been developing for some time; it utilizes elements of Thai massage, myofascial release and Ashiatsu. Jen, a talented dancer, seamlessly climbs on and off the low massage table, using the wooden structure for balance and the silk loops as a sling for her body so her feet and knees can provide and moderate pressure. This slow, deep work is primarily skin on skin (often times feet on skin), with minimal use of oil to allow for the fascial layers to release. Jen spent considerable time releasing built up tension and congestion in my hips and legs, which was sorely needed—pun intended!
Usually when I receive bodywork I go deep inside and am quiet, focused on taking in the experience, but for this session I was quite the chatty Cathy! I was so interested in Jen’s system, how she developed it, how she uses it physically, and what her vision is for future endeavors, that I couldn’t stop myself from asking question after question. The system reminds me of my use of straps to provide deep pressure in Thai massage, which I learned from Christopher Ray, but the use of bars and silks may be much more versatile. Jen agreed to give me an intro lesson in her methods and I’ve already been brainstorming the use of silks in my office and ways for the two of us to collaborate. I am drawn to Jen’s creativity and inspired by her strength and dedication as a bodyworker, teacher and human being. For more information visit www.facebook.com/bodythymemassage/.