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The Art and Science of Spa and Body Therapy
Book Review

The book ‘The Art and Science of Spa and Body Therapy’, is written by senior practitioners and examiners of ITEC, UK, and edited by Jane Foulston, chief executive, ITEC, to make sure that it provides plenty of information to the readers.

Fay Major, Marguerite Wynne and Elaine Hall have more than fifteen years of experience each of them being ITEC examiners, and ITEC, being one of the leading awarding bodies in the UK that conduct examinations in beauty, spa and hairdressing subjects all over the world!

As it says in the Introduction of the book itself, it is produced by keeping the students in mind. The images and illustrations are of very good quality so are the “Did you know?” pieces of information. Visual effects in the book are nice which attract one’s attention to the topic of interest or importance.

Chapter 1 – Being Professional

What is good? This chapter discusses in detail what does it exactly mean by being professional. It talks about the importance of providing professional environment and best practices of client care. A lot of emphasis is given to professional health and safety in this chapter. It also provides a check list for the therapists to follow, before the client arrives – very useful for the students and a good reference point for the therapists.

What could have been better? Topics such as information on bacteria and virus, methods of sterilisation, first-aid kit and fire-fighting equipment, could have been laid out in a separate chapter.

Chapter 2 – Body Analysis

What is good? Very good explanation is given on client consultation, how to gather background information from the client in order to decide on a treatment plan, assessment techniques, body types and posture. However, this whole chapter is not part of the current Holistic massage syllabus for the ITEC qualification.

What could have been better? A sample chart to fill body measurements is missing which could have been an useful tool as a reference point. The chapter talks about the postural problems and recommended exercises for each of them. However, it does not explain enough why a therapist needs to know about these postural problems and how she should adopt the massage techniques to accommodate them.

Chapter 3 – Exfoliation

What is good? This chapter talks about reasons for exfoliation, contra-indications to the treatment and different exfoliating methods. It also covers anatomy of skin to refresh the knowledge of skin and relate that to the exfoliation treatment.

What could have been better? Although recap-type information on skin was most welcomed, additional information on cells and body tissues could have been avoided. Instead of giving this information along with exfoliation, it would have been useful to compile all information on anatomy, physiology, safety bacteria and viruses (from 1st chapter) in a separate chapter. The chapter also lacks in providing information on different types of scrubs available generally and their ingredients.

Chapter 4 – Tanning

What is good? The entire chapter is very informative. As artificial colouring (tanning) is not popular in Asia, (actually it is other way round everybody wants to be fairer than they are!!!) the entire chapter was a pleasure to read.

Chapter 5 – Heat Treatments

What is good? All heat treatments are explained briefly including benefits of different heat treatments such as steam, sauna, plunge pools and so on. As in the other chapters, “did you know?” section gives pieces of interesting information.

What could have been better? It would have been useful if the author would have given a comparative study of different heat treatments in a chart format. Also, indication of minimum to maximum treatment time for each treatment would have provided guidance to new therapists. Also, vital information on contra indications and adverse effects of prolonged treatment is missing.

Chapter 6 – Spas

What is good? Very nice explanation is given on the history of spa and the five senses. Also, information on water health and safety is very interesting and informative. Useful information is included about different areas within the spa such as the reception, wet area, changing rooms, laundry facilities and relaxation room.

What could have been better? More information on different treatments that can be offered in spas and typical space required for each activity and conceptualisation (designing) would have been useful from students as well as prospective spa owner’s point of view.

Chapter 7 – Hydrotherapy

What is good? Excellent information is included in this chapter. In this chapter the authors talk about basics (chemistry) of water, properties of hydrotherapy, effects of hot and cold water on skin, principles of Kneipp treatment, Mud Baths and Seaweed Powder Baths, Affusion Showers and Swiss Showers. It also provides information on Floatation Tanks and their benefits.

It will be a pleasure reading this

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chapter, even if one has limited knowledge of hydrotherapy.

Chapter 8 – Body Masks and Wraps

What is good? Once again, very detailed information on body wraps and masks is provided, which makes it worth buying the book! Body wraps and envelopments are new to the Indian spa culture. Therapists themselves are not sure about the technique as well as the results. This book will be useful as a starting point to learn more about these treatments.

Chapter 9 – Massage techniques

What is good? In this chapter, the authors talk about Swedish massage, different movements used during massage, contra indications, massage mediums to be used and massage routine. Pages full of visuals (photographs) to show sequences of massage movements can be a good way of learning massage techniques.

What could have been better? Although the visuals are excellent, a summary of massage steps for different parts of the body would have been a useful reference point.

Chapter 10 – The Science of Electrical Treatments

What is good? The chapter starts with introduction to electricity and Ohm’s law. It also then talks about Infra red and ultra violet radiations. Information on electrical safety gives emphasis on the importance on safe practices. Large anatomical figures of muscles and motor points in the chapter on Faradic, gives visual information on placement of Faradic pads for muscle contraction exercises. Information on galvanic machine to reduce cellulite, on micro current and its use in body contouring, vacuum suction machine, to improve lymphatic drainage and finally mechanical massager (G5) to break down fat, all is very informative. The entire chapter is incredibly educational, especially for students!

This book is full of useful information for students as well as working therapists. Hence, it will be worth having a copy in possession!

Writer: Vrinda Seddon

Article in Issue 4 page 70

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Welcome to www.spamantra.in (the “Site”), a website owned and controlled by C&E Pvt. Ltd (“C&E”, “we”, “us”, or “our”). We operate the Site, and C&E products and services made available through the Site (collectively the “Services”), which make link creation in copied and pasted content effortless to readers and, in certain cases, enables easier searches from copied content. We provide this privacy policy to let you know what information we collect, and how we use it, share it and protect it.

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In the event we go through a business transition such as a merger, acquisition by another company, or sale of all or a portion of our assets, the Publisher’s email address may be among the assets transferred.

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We operate the Services, which make link creation in copied and pasted content effortless to readers and, in certain cases, which make searches from copied content easier. When you, an End User, copy content from a Publisher Site and paste it into another document, the Services that have been installed on the Publisher Site may, at the publishers discretion, automatically append a link back to the original content. When you visit a Publisher Site, we collect certain non-personally identifiable information (“Non-PII”) for use on our platform (the “C&E Platform”). We enable our Publishers to use this information via the Platform for analytics purposes, and we also use some of this information to market our products and services to you and those of third parties we believe may be of interest to you as described below.

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In the event we go through a business transition such as a merger, acquisition by another company, or sale of all or a portion of our assets, we expect that any and all information that we have will be among the assets transferred.

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