Pretty In Pink: Hudson Valley Healing Center’s Himalayan Salt Cave
You may have noticed a proliferation of glowing pink salt lamps popping up in doctor’s offices, massage parlors, yoga studios, and even bars and restaurants during the past few years. The lamps are mood enhancers, for sure, but the science is iffy on what health benefits, if any, one small lamp can provide.
What has shown a therapeutic effect on conditions from asthma and allergies to eczema and inflammation is a more intense form of halotherapy or salt therapy. Since at least the 12th century, people have been “taking the waters” or relaxing in mineral baths both natural and man-made, as well as spending time in salt caves.
Hudson Valley Healing Center (HVHC), which opened just shy of a year ago in Poughkeepsie, New York, has built its own salt cave right here in the city. The room was created to feel like an actual cave deep inside the earth, complete with a ceiling that mimics a nighttime sky full of twinkling stars.
According to HVHC owner Elisa Gwilliam, the cave is composed of 13 tons of Himalayan sea salt. The walls are lined with it, and 4 to 6 inches of crushed salt covers the floor. “We use a halogenerator to grind salt up and release it into the air, where it’s monitored with a sensor,” she says. The salt particles are so small that you can’t see them with the naked eye. “Small molecules can reach places larger ones can’t,” she says. “Dry salt isn’t attached to a water molecule like wet salt is, like when you’re at the beach, so it can go deeper into cavities and lay longer on your skin.”
According to science, Himalayan salt emits negative ions that are absorbed by the body when inhaled. The ions help the body with everyday functions such as fluid exchange, and balance and conduction of muscles and nerves. Salt also has antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and antifungal properties that can fight germs.
One 45-minute session in HVHC’s salt cave, where you can zone out in zero-gravity reclining chairs, is $40. The Center also offers yoga classes in the cave twice a week (limited to 8 participants), meditation classes, reiki, and special workshops such as yoga nidra and crystal bowl sound healing. If you mention you saw this story in Rural Intelligence, Hudson Valley Healing Center will give you a 20-percent discount on your salt cave session.
Hudson Valley Healing Center
Salt Cave ~ Yoga ~ Lifestyle
51 Springside Ave., Poughkeepsie, NY
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