For thousands of years, Japan has been leading the way in the health arts and sciences. Strong proponents of holistic medicine and treatments, the Japanese are naturally drawn to spa-like amenities that utilize heat to correct imbalances in the body; one such treatment is ganban’yoku.
A ganban is a sizable piece of granite that is inserted into the floor and heated up to a low temperature. Under a trained therapist’s care, a patient can lay on the ganban, allowing their bodies to gradually heat up. The ganban’yoku treatment is often referred to as “bedrock bathing without hot water” and the amount of sweat that is emitted from the body during a session is said to be more than what would be emitted during a hot sauna session. Unique to the ganban’yoku are infrared rays and negative ions which pass through the ganban stones; such elements are said to have a number of positive effects on the body. Even a single ganban’yoku session can begin to improve blood circulation, skin composition, immunity to disease, stiff joints, back pain and mental stress. It can also have a positive effect on metabolism, weight loss and detoxification. In recent times, the ganban’yoku spa trend has moved westward to top-notch spas, gyms, hotels, golf courses, ski resorts, hospitals and even into peoples’ private homes. In fact, the new Las Vegas Aria Resort and Casino features a luxury ganban’yoku that is extremely popular with guests.
True to all other holistic therapies, ganban’yoku utilizes simple, natural elements to offer its users an authentic experience that can potentially heal on a deep level. Undoubtedly, ganban’yoku is a spa trend that is here to stay.