Body Balance Elmira opened its doors at 2 Park St. E. in October, bringing together the expertise of its four entrepreneurs to tend to whatever ails you.
Margaret Harms Dyck, a deep massage therapist and reflexologist, initially brought the Body Balance team together. Alongside her are business partners Trudy Klassen, a registered massage therapist; Linda Heber, a registered practical nurse and foot care specialist; and Jocelyn Holden Dueck, who shares Heber’s designation.
“In this clinic, we all look at the whole person,” explained Heber of the approach the four practitioners share. “So when someone comes for a message, whether it be registered massage therapy or deep muscle therapy, we look at the client from the head to the toe.”
Both Heber and Dueck, as foot-care specialists, can treat the gamut of afflictions affecting people below the knee. From in-grown nails and calluses to diabetic foot care and fungi. Dueck even offers home visits in the area for those who need it.
“Especially post-surgery: so people who have had a surgery that can’t get out here. Or it’s a hip or a knee or a foot or something, and they can’t walk. … It’s good to have someone come out to the house,” says Heber.
While Heber and Dueck look after the feet, Dyck and Klassen, form the other half of the Body Balance equation. With their expert touch, they can ease muscular tensions, perform joint mobilizations, loosen stiffness, improve circulation and alleviate all manner of pains.
“You walk in heavy and walk out light,” says Dyck, succinctly, of the experience.
As well as practicing massage therapy, Dyck also has experience in reflexology, which she says can help with the treatment of a client’s internal organs.
“Reflexology is nervous stimulation of the feet because all of your nerve-endings are at the feet of your body. So reflexology, it helps for the whole body because we can’t treat internal organs,” but by stimulating the nerves in the feet, she says, it can provide relief to different parts of the body.
While people will often come in experiencing pain, or after a surgery or injury, the group say that a massage can have a host of positive effects for practically anyone. Whether that be something as simple as helping correct posture to improving someone’s energy.
“Pretty much anything that’s going on,” says Klassen. “If you feel like you’re a little bit off, even if you just don’t feel clear in the head, massage helps for that too,” adding that she will perform a range of tests to identify where the problem lies.
“I’ve learned about like a hundred tests for each area of the body and it kind of says, ‘Oh, this is a nerve thing, this a muscle thing, this is a joint thing.’ And it could be all kinds of things people wouldn’t really put those together,” she says.
It certainly feels therapeutic just walking into the Body Balance clinic, which is soaked in a soothing and settling ambience. The sights and sounds are pleasantly muted and unobtrusive, yet little hints of greenery and colour keep the place feeling vibrant and alive, and give it an almost home-like quality.
“It’s a very calming and tranquil,” says foot care specialist Dueck. “Because it’s all about a whole health feeling, so they’re not just going in there to massage or do a foot, they’re trying to treat the whole mind, body and soul. So it’s a wholeness feel. … Any of us therapists want to make sure our clients feel wonderful and everything when they leave.”
Having just opened up shop in Elmira, the Body Balance team are still building up their local presence and clientele, but are confident they can get results. Says Heber: “I think that when people come here, we’re going to help them either improve their health or maintain their health-”
“And make them feel great while we’re doing it,” adds Klassen.
“From the feet up,” continues Heber.