Laura Broderick may have found the best way to give back to our honored active military men and women - literally.
“They get their massages complimentary - I don’t charge them,” the Danvers resident stated.
When asked how long this deal is running, or if it coincides with a special holiday or event, her reply is simple and succinct: “It’s not a special - I won’t charge them. Ever.” Broderick is not only giving back to active military, she’s included veterans of the military, too, who receive services at a 50 percent discount.
One may wonder why Broderick chose this specific cause, to give back specifically to men and women in uniform. She explained: “Why do I do it? Well, my brother was in the Army; my dad was in the Korean War, and growing up I was very much about the military.
I can't even tell you about how Sept. 11 shocked me; and to see my friends and family get deployed and go to war - giving back is the least I could do.” She continued, “I have friends who went to war and since coming home can’t find jobs, or are losing their homes, which is despicable to me. So if I can make them feel better for an hour, I’m all for it.”
Originally from a small town in upstate New York, Broderick is the owner of Solstice Bodywork and Massage Therapy, located at 92 High St. in Danvers. After moving to this area 14 years ago with husband Jonathan, who is from Beverly, the Danvers resident has thrown herself into becoming an expert on the multi-faceted health benefits gained by regular massage.
“The greatest benefit to massage is it has been found to physically boost the immune system,” she said. “They've proven that it brings your brain waves down than alpha state - that's when you're almost asleep and when you do your emotional healing; subconsciously you're healing emotionally at the same time.”
The theory that the mind and body are connected is gaining traction in the medical community, as well. In fact, Broderick noted a study through Boston Medical Center that has discovered huge benefits to massage on cancer patients. “Massage Therapy is the best thing to do when people have chemo because it helps the medicine go through their system faster, and helps the symptoms of pains and nausea get through the system faster. Anything to get the blood flowing is the key. Essentially, that’s why you get knots to begin with; so if you get the blood flowing you can get the body to heal itself.” she explained. She also denounces as myth the notion that harmful chemotherapy spreads to therapists through the lymph nodes.
By the end of October Broderick will be certified in oncology massage so she can bring her healing touch to clients battling cancer and undergoing chemotherapy. “There isn't anyone on the north shore that does it so far,” she stated.
The former mortgage underwriter learned first hand how the body reacts to regular massage treatments, after becoming a client during the economic crisis a couple of years ago.
‘When the sub prime market fell out, I started getting massage on my own, just (to deal with) the stress of the market. I know how it made me feel; it was the best part if my week. I needed it,” she explained.
It wasn’t long before the decision was made to get a massage therapy license and begin her own practice as a way to bring in a little additional income, and to give herself a much needed break from the pressures of her day job. “I'm lucky enough that my husband has a great job (as the direct sales manager for Comcast in the greater Boston region) and could help out in the beginning,” she said.
The business began initially as a traveling massage service, where the therapy was administered in clients homes or offices, but once things got started, the business took off.
Broderick explained, “To be honest, after sixteen years in the mortgage business I was burned out. I didn't want to go back to it unless I had to, and the more I did massage, the more I loved it. Finally, I just got too busy. I had to...open my own place.”
Opening the business in Danvers after finding the space in a Craigslist Ad two years ago made it a done deal, and Broderick said she couldn’t have been more pleased. While she maintains competitive pricing, she admits to consciously keeping her services affordable and is always willing to work with people on financing. She said Danvers’ tight knit community has welcomed her from the start, and even her business neighbors on high Street have offered to spread the word about Solstice Massage by handing out her business card.
The mom of a sixth grade daughter said she felt she fit in here, and that a huge benefit of living in the community is that Danvers is so family oriented; everyone helps each other out here. “I love Danvers,” she said. “It was difficult for me going from a little small town in Buffalo, to a much bigger town. But Danvers still feels like a small town, which was very important to me.”
She continued, “I'm very blessed. I started my business in the worst part of the economy, but I can't complain, I've done well. I think people need grounding with their stressful lives.”
Solstice Bodywork and Massage Therapy
Laura Broderick - owner