As a trusted salon, spa or clinic owner or therapist, you’re exposed to a wide range of issues that concern clients but may not fall within the scope of your practice.
The intimacy of the relationship you form with them is an opportunity to empower yourself – and thereby clients – with knowledge that can enhance, or change their lives.
Since SPA+CLINIC rebranded last year after 14 years as Spa Australasia, we have set as one of our goals to encourage businesses (and sole operators) to ‘look outside your own backyard’.
That is, to keep abreast of breakthroughs, trends and hot topics outside your own space and form alliances with fellow professionals in complementary but non-competitive businesses. Think dermal therapist cross-referring with naturopath; masseur with doctor; makeup professional with dermatologist; body contouring practitioner with nutritionist and/or fitness expert …
This means that, if you’re not equipped to offer a certain service, the benefit of your wider knowledge and referrals will really help that client. In turn, this will build your authority – and repeat business. Cross-referrals will undoubtedly have a knock-on effect back to you.
However, Keeping current has its dangers. There’s so much hype and spin surrounding just about everything, how do you drill down to what’s real?
Last week at the Science of Wellness roundtable in New York, the Global Wellness Institute (GWI) launched the first website – www.wellnessevidence.com – to provide direct access to the medical evidence for 24 mainstream wellness approaches, such as yoga, acupuncture and meditation.
With thousands of clinical studies evaluating the effectiveness of approaches from chiropractic to weight loss, the site was designed to make it easier for the millions of people seeking alternative health solutions, for medical professionals selecting courses of treatment, and for companies designing employee wellness programs, to research wellness alternatives at the most authoritative sources of evidence-based medicine.
A project of the Global Wellness Institute (GWI)*, Wellness Evidence was previewed at the Global Wellness Summit in Morocco in September 2014.
‘Wellness is a massive $3.4 trillion global sector – but with explosive consumer markets, and misinformation on the latest fad diets or ‘miracle’ cures can spawn,’ says Susie Ellis, president and CEO of the GWI.
‘This new site, with transparent access to the same databases doctors use, is a much-needed, ‘spin-free’ wellness research zone.
‘While medical studies on wellness approaches are typically radically under-funded compared to traditional medicine’s drugs, devices, and procedures, there’s an important, growing body of evidence to explore.
‘People have questions: Is there strong evidence that acupuncture benefits chronic back and neck pain? Long-term smoking cessation? That highly symptomatic stress significantly increases risk of early death? The answers are yes, no, and yes – and whether the evidence is positive, inconclusive or negative, it’s searchable at Wellness Evidence.’
Evidence is offered for these modalities:
- ‘ Acupuncture; acupressure; aromatherapy; Ayurveda
- ‘ Biofeedback
- ‘ Chiropractic
- ‘ Exercise
- ‘ Hydrotherapy
- ‘ Manual lymph drainage massage; meditation; music therapy
- ‘ Nutritional counselling
- ‘ Pilates
- ‘ Relaxation therapy
- ‘ Sauna; sleep health; smoking cessation; stress management
- ‘ Tai chi; traditional Chinese medicine (TCM)
- ‘ Weight loss; workplace wellness
- ‘ Yoga
Among those integrally involved in Wellness Evidence’s creation is Dr Marc Cohen, Professor of Complementary Medicine at Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT), and new president of the Australasian Spa and Wellness Association (ASWell; formerly the Australasian Spa Association, ASpa).
The Global Wellness Institute is considered the leading global research and educational resource for the $3.4 trillion worldwide wellness sector; an international think tank that brings together leaders from the private and public sectors to positively impact and shape the future of the wellness industry. It is the umbrella organisation of the Global Wellness Summit and the Global Wellness Tourism Congress.