I walked into Sydney Ka Huna Hawaiian massage feeling a bit apprehensive, as I’d never been for a Hawaiian massage before. I’d walked past the studio in Paddington numerous times and had always been curious. I was met by the smiling Steve, who was to be my therapist for my 1-hour Kahuna signature massage. He talked me through the treatment, explaining he would use a mix of movement, breathing and massage techniques to help de-stress and re-centre my energy.
Then he hit me with it – I’d be naked. That’s right. Totally nude, with a man. I’m not a prude but this left me feeling a bit worried.
Steve was lovely and made me feel at ease, explaining that my “mid-section” would be completely covered during the treatment with a sarong (think sarong nappy). It’s now or never!
We chatted about my mental, emotional and physical state in order to determine the best approach for the treatment. He encouraged me to focus on my breathing during the massage, inhaling and exhaling deeply and clearly to allow the new and fresh energy to enter my body, and expelling any negative thoughts and tension.
So I got undressed and lay down on the massage table, covering myself with the sarong.
According to its website, Hawaiian Kahuna massage is a unique, flowing, vibrant yet deeply relaxing whole-body massage. Traditionally, Hawaiian massage was part of the Hawaiian Rites of Passage as it is thought to be both transformational and healing. It balances the body and the mind, and heals a person physically, emotionally and spiritually.
In the Hawaiian tradition, a Kahuna is a healer. Your practitioner uses their hands, elbows and forearms in long fluid strokes of varying intensity, sometimes fast and sometimes slow. The flow also incorporates stretches, under-body work, deep tissue techniques and sound vibration.
What does this actually mean? Steve spent the hour giving me a gorgeous oil massage, following my breath (which I tried my best to be deep and clear) and using his arms, hands and forearms in long flowing strokes. He went from my feet to my shoulders to underneath my belly in one movement, for example.
Relaxing music was playing throughout and Steve danced around the table using tai chi style movements. It seemed a bit odd to begin with but I couldn’t see much as I was on my front. All I could hear was him moving around the bed and chanting quietly! He said at the start that this helps him to tune in to the natural rhythms of my body, mind and soul.
At times, I was half asleep and then I felt like laughing out loud. Like when he pushed me half off the bed and held on to my feet, so my head was nearly on the floor. The benefits of a therapist with strong arms I guess.
The deep breathing was very therapeutic and I loved the feeling of the full body massage. Totally different to my usual massage where they tend to work on a small part of your body at one time.
We ended the treatment with him asking me if I was open to trying something different. I wasn’t sure what he meant and I was sat on the side of a massage table with just a sarong nappy on! But what the hell I thought! We then proceeded to put our foreheads together and take three deep breaths in and out, in unison. We then had a big hug and Steve said he hoped I’d had a good experience.
Afterwards, I asked the owner, Tamara, how customers feel about being naked during the treatment. I admitted I felt a nervous to begin with and had the thoughts us ladies often have, worrying about my hair legs and cellulite. She reassured me that once you try this type of massage, you keep coming back for more. And I agree!
I left feeling extremely relaxed, energised, more aware and deep in thought. It took me a while to write this review, as the treatment is unlike anything I’ve experienced before. Yes, I was naked but it was so much more than that. It was something very spiritual and I didn’t want this review to come across as something creepy or sexual, as it was definitely not that. This would suit someone who wants something different – and is open to feeling something in their minds and bodies. The whole treatment is extremely professional and I felt like Steve really cared about making me feel relaxed and less stressed.
Lou Loves: 4 stars
Sydney Ka Huna Hawaiian Massage, 76 Oxford Street, Paddington, Sydney NSW 2020, (02) 9358-3777, open 7 Days : 8:30am – 9:30pm http://www.sydneykahuna.com.au/
*Sydney Ka Huna kindly gifted me this massage experience, but all opinions are my own*