Whole Body

Sixty Minutes

Take a break from negative news overload with a one-hour massage

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To quote my oldest sister, who often quotes poet William Wordsworth: “The world is too much with us.” Guilty, as charged. While driving in the car I listen to NPR, I peek at my Twitter feed around the clock, and back at home CNN’s “Breaking News” blares almost constantly from the television. For someone who spent years of her life being blissfully unaware, I am now tuned in. Being informed feels right, but it doesn’t always feel good, especially when news is unsettling and causes tension and stress to be held tightly in your muscles. Guilty again.

Try as I might to decompress, I often realize that I’m holding my shoulders in a stiff shrug position. Ice packs, the heating pad, and some stretching bring mild relief, but there’s nothing quite like a massage, so I did a quick search to find “one near me” and discovered Body Kneads, Inc. The website notes that they “will knead, stretch, and release your muscles until they succumb to giving you relief from your everyday discomforts,” which sounded like the perfect Rx, so I called. Similar to booking a first-time doctor’s visit, I was prompted to fill out a client intake form for the purpose of creating a personal treatment plan.

While new to me, this business has been around for nearly 20 years and has two locations: Providence and East Greenwich. Body Kneads is owned by Victoria Moutahir, who also teaches at the CCRI Therapeutic Massage Program. I chose the former location. As it turned out, my appointment was only hours after that intense anticipation of the Kavanaugh vote, so yeah, I was more than ready to have my “everyday discomforts” released.

Arriving at 251 Waterman Street, it was an added bonus that securing a parking spot was easy and free (something I never take for granted in any city). The building is one of those stately East Side multi-family homes-turned-commercial property. Built in 1900, Moutahir notes that prior to Body Kneads, it was a medical practice; far from sterile, the current interior is warm and welcoming with a cozy glow emitted from a Himalayan salt lamp. I was greeted by licensed massage therapist Jenna Terranova-Frisby, who discussed a course of action based on my form responses along with other issues like my shoulder pain from “the shrug.”

The massage room was comfortable, and the table was heated. Terranova-Frisby concentrated on the areas we discussed, working and stretching my limbs, while regularly checking to make sure the pressure she applied was just-right; it always was. Over the calm spa music, the busy sounds of Waterman Street traffic could still be heard but somehow added to the character of being above a bustling section of Wayland Square.  

Once back in the main room, Terranova-Frisby gave me a cup of water, and we had a post-treatment chat. Before exiting, I noticed a collection box for the Rhode Island Community Food Bank. Turns out Body Kneads donates about 100 pounds of food every month, incenting client giving with free add-on services for each three non-perishable items donated. Massage therapy is also offered by a CCRI student at special intern pricing. Learning about these initiatives made me feel even better about feeling better.

Body Kneads, Inc.
251 Waterman Street • 453-4263