You certainly feel a sense of calm when you walk into Helio for the first time, but it's not the same overly manufactured tranquility you might find at a spa. Instead, it's an atmosphere where relaxation meets the utilitarian, which happens to be exactly the type of massage and bodywork that Helio offers.
Helio is not about to give you a frou-frou light rub down and send you on your way. It aims to heal pain and help the body to function at its highest. Rick Hayhurst, who has been a therapist for over 15 years, opened the comfy space in 2002.
The massage menu at Helio is hefty and features the house specialty Helio Massage, a full body massage with scented oils, lotions and creams, heated table and eye covers, ($80 to $160), the Body Purifier, a deep tissue massage, improving circulation and relieving tension, and the Pearl, a Helio Massage modified for the expecting mother. Helio offers a membership program as well; for $25 per month, visitors can subtract $45 from any service.
Classes: Helio offers a full range of classes, some of which prepare students for the national certification required to practice massage therapy in the state of Illinois. Classes include the Practitioner Program, which is 500 hours and costs $6,995, and the Entrepreneur Program, which is 890 hours and costs $12,900. There is also a novice class ($2,340) and an introduction to massage class for $120. Go to bodybizinc.com for more information.
Extras: Each of the three small treatment rooms have heated beds, a light quality about them and nature music floating through the air. Massage therapists at Helio use a special adjustable cushion on each bed that allows them to customize the bed for each client, depending on that person's size or particular source of pain.
Centerstage Reviewer: Christy Bonstell