Column by: Shelby Jones, Public Relations Manager, ISPA

Ayurveda is not the eco-friendly product company we all know and love; it’s an ancient system of traditional folk medicine from India. Ayurvedic treatments employ a large variety of techniques to restore your body, mind and spirit to perfect balance. These techniques incorporate nutrition, herbal medicine, aromatherapy, massage and meditation.

Tibetan and Chinese medicine have roots in Ayurveda. The word actually translates from Sanskrit to mean the science of life (ayur = life, veda = science). It’s not just a few treatments you get during a vacation; it’s a practice that provides guidelines on daily and seasonal routines. It’s actually more popular than you might imagine, according to the ISPA 2010 U.S. Spa Industry Study, a little over one in four spas offer complementary or alternative treatments, of those 22 percent offer an ayurvedic treatment.

If you take a closer look at ayurvedic principles you’ll hear a lot about doshas. These bioenergies are comprised of three elements known in Sanskrit as vatta (wind), pitta (fire) and kapha (earth). The doshas are considered important for health and well-being, and when they are balanced your body will function to its fullest. To find out which dosha you most identify with take the dosha quiz from The Chopra Center.

Massage is an important part of Ayurvedic therapy and utilizes Marma points to open up energy channels that can cause imbalance. Marma points include adhipati – the top of the forehead, sthapani – the third eye and apanga – the side of the eyebrow.

If you want to learn more about different spa treatments visit ISPA’s spa glossary at

Shelby Jones is based in Lexington, KY at the ISPA headquarters, Spa Week’s exclusive trade partner. She has worked as ISPA’s Public Relations Manager for five years where she connects with top media outlets to promote ISPA members and the spa lifestyle. To get in touch with Shelby please visit experienceispa.comemail her or follow @ISPADoYou on Twitter.


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