Newly renovated business focuses on body therapy and meditation
‘Unwind’ in the heart of town
By Trevor Greene-
In the heart of Woodruff, 1106 4th Avenue to be exact, sits a Northwoods escape offering a variety of ways for anyone who wants to relax, meditate and “unwind.” Formerly the Holistic Health and Wellness Center, Unwind in Woodruff is a business recently renovated this past year. It touts multiple massage rooms, an open space room for a variety of activities — yoga and sound baths — and a top of the line cold bath positioned next to its most impressive feature, a state of the art stone heated sauna fitting up to 10 people. For those wondering what a sound bath is, owner and operator Andrea Pitman likened it to a mediation practice “with noise.” “It’s not music,” she said. “In a sound bath, it’s using instruments with the intention to raise our frequency through the vibrations. But it’s not with a beat or melody or anything like that. So, it actually scrambles the brain, confuses the brain, and sends us from the sympathetic (state) … and actually shifts us into a parasympathetic state.” The parasympathetic state is a state where peoples’ bodies rest, digest and repair, Pitman said. Unwind has six workers on a full time basis, including massage therapists and acupuncturists. Additionally, some people rent the business’s space to hold programs and teachings. On Saturdays, Unwind hosts tea tastings at its bar which greets visitors just to the right of its lobby. “I try really hard to source (teas) as locally as possible,” Pitman said. “Or at least as directly as possible. So there’s only like one person between me and the people who make the tea.” Walking out of Unwind’s patio doors, from its tea bar to its backyard space, a trail leads visitors up to a cold bath and sauna. Pitman spoke very highly of the health benefits gained by utilizing a cold bath and sauna. “(The cold bath) is like a hot tub, only in reverse,” she said. “(It helps) inflammation, and what they’ve been studying recently with it, because of the pandemic and stuff, is the mental health benefits. They call it a hormonal swarm, meaning it does a big dump of all of the feel good hormones.” Next to the bath and sauna sits an outdoor fireplace surrounded by chairs for all to relax. Landscaping the backyard area, Pitman said it was designed to make visitors feel they were more in a forest setting, compared to being “a block off of 51.” Pitman’s experience with regard to body therapy and meditation is expansive. She studied massage therapy in Hawaii, received a masters in spa therapy at the “ultra luxury resort” that is the Montage in Laguna Beach, Calif. and trained other therapists in the Napa Valley, Calif. area. Her research and studies aren’t over yet, though. Pitman plans to travel to Finland next week with Unwind shareholder Art Nelson. The trip will be research-based, she said, focusing on Nordic style saunas and therapies. “The last few years have put everyone (on edge) and stressed out,” Pitman said. “ ... So we offer all of those things for you to be able to unwind, whether that is massage therapy, whether that is just coming in for a tea tasting … or if it’s like the sauna, that’s just like the best thing to just … ‘unwind.’” Trevor Greene may be reached via email at [email protected].