Most of us first consider the spa a destination for when we want to indulge, but it's also a place where you can begin to correct some of your worst habits. It starts from a simple place: Relaxation is key.

"Sometimes some of these bad habits and addictions that we have are based on anxiety and deeper feelings that we have," says Beth Trachtman, owner of The Massage Studio in King of Prussia. She's a practitioner of Reiki, an ancient therapy.

"The practitioner simply lays their hands on you and helps conduct the energy through themselves and into the client and what that does for you is open up some of the chakras," she says. "So in helping to open up some of the blockages that are going on, it could help to relieve some of those anxieties."

While Reiki doesn't promise to get you to quit smoking, the deep relaxation can help, as Trachtman puts it, "get past that barrier that's been holding you back."

But if your problem is something like bad posture, then myofascial release and deep tissue massages, performed regularly, can help you stop slumping. Myofascial release is a special soft tissue massage meant to treat problems with bodily structure. "First we work on the muscles to get them back where they're supposed to be, and then we teach the person stretches and just that they have to become more mindful of what they're doing," says Juliana Pires of Republic of Wellness in Quincy, Mass.


Pires' spa practices a combination of the deep tissue and myofascial release. If you are looking into this kind of massage, make sure to inquire about the training of the masseuse.

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