Wellness offerings for retreatants are available by Heartwood resident practitioners  beginning with the December 2016 Christmas retreat!

Therapies available when you arrive will depend on current resident skills/certifications, as our zoning only allows for occupational home-based services. Payment for any services would be between you and the practitioner. Heartwood Refuge offers basic health and spa services for guests and retreatants only. We do not accept public walk-ins. We recognize the importance of enabling the body to support intensive meditation practice and are committed to promoting beneficial lifestyle changes you can take home with you that help the body heal itself. Upon check-in, you will be advised what practitioner-offered modalities will be available during your retreat.
You can reserve the full spectrum infrared therapeutic sauna and/or light therapy for a nominal cost.
Group classes and individualized instruction are offered in t’ai c’hi, qigong and yoga as part of our resident and sangha life. You are welcome to attend any offered classes to aid your stamina and vigor for intensive meditation practice. Activities such as these cleanse and strengthen our bodies and mind through healthy activity, movement, touch, relaxation and deep cleansing. They support spiritual, mental and psychological well being.  All of HW’s weekly offerings are on a “dana” basis.



Sweating is the body’s safe and natural way to heal & stay healthy. Far infrared sauna benefits the body by heating it directly causing a rise in core temperature resulting in a deep, detoxifying sweat at the cellular level, where toxins reside.


Unlike traditional saunas which operate at extremely harsh temperatures, infrared is a gentle, soothing and therapeutic heat that promotes relaxation and improved sleep. Infrared sauna benefits include therapy that helps you relax while receiving an invigorating deep tissue sweat, leaving you fully refreshed after each session.

Lower Blood Pressure

Infrared saunas induce a deep sweat to make the heart pump faster, which in turn increases blood flow, lowers blood pressure and helps circulation. Scientific evidence shows the infrared sauna benefits using an infrared sauna a couple times a week lowers blood pressure.

Anti-Aging & Skin Purification

The near infrared wavelength (sometimes referred to as Red Light Therapy) is the most effective wavelength for healing the epidermis and dermis layers of the skin. Near infrared treatments stimulate collagen production to reduce wrinkles and improve overall skin tone.

Cell Health

Near infrared therapy stimulates the circulatory system and more fully oxygenates the body’s cells. Better blood circulation means more toxins flow from the cellular level to the skin’s surface to improve cell health, aid in muscle recovery and strengthen the immune system.

Weight Loss

Studies have shown that benefits of an infrared sauna session can burn upwards of 600 calories while you relax! As the body works to cool itself, there is a substantial increase in heart rate, cardiac output and metabolic rate, causing the body to burn more calories.

Pain Relief

Infrared heat penetrates tissue, joints, and muscles to relieve anything from minor aches and pains to chronic pain conditions such as fibromyalgia. Pain management professionals incorporate infrared heat therapy into treatment plans to decrease pain and muscle spasms and to speed up recovery time.

Improved Circulation

Heating the muscles with infrared rays produces an increase in blood flow similar to that seen during exercise. Regular infrared sauna use—especially in the mid infrared range—can significantly stimulate blood flow up to twice the normal rate.

Wound Healing

Scientific research has concluded that near infrared therapy greatly enhances the skin’s healing process by promoting faster cell regeneration and human tissue growth. Human cell growth increases to repair wounds and prevent infection.

  • Alleviate low-back pain and improve range of motion.
  • Assist with shorter, easier labor for expectant mothers and shorten maternity hospital stays.
  • Ease medication dependence.
  • Enhance immunity by stimulating lymph flow—the body’s natural defense system.
  • Exercise and stretch weak, tight, or atrophied muscles.
  • Help athletes of any level prepare for, and recover from, strenuous workouts.
  • Improve the condition of the body’s largest organ—the skin.
  • Increase joint flexibility.
  • Lessen depression and anxiety.
  • Promote tissue regeneration, reducing scar tissue and stretch marks.
  • Pump oxygen and nutrients into tissues and vital organs, improving circulation.
  • Reduce postsurgery adhesions and swelling.
  • Reduce spasms and cramping.
  • Relax and soften injured, tired, and overused muscles.
  • Release endorphins—amino acids that work as the body’s natural painkiller.
  • Relieve migraine pain.

  • alleviate migraines and tension headaches
  • lessen the severity of PMS and menopausal symptoms
  • reduce anxiety and stress
  • Alleviate sleep problems
  • addiction control
  • carpal tunnel relief
  • chronic fatigue relief
  • digestive disorders
  • fibromyalgia relief
  • hypertension releif
  • fertility
  • joint pain relief
  • nausea relief
  • sciatica relief
  • Light therapy is a non-invasive method that can kill acne-causing bacteria. Acne removal can be painful if done in a dermatologist’s clinic, with only piercing equipment and syringes. Thanks to advances in light therapy, these bacteria can be destroyed when the light penetrates their cell walls, thus stopping them from causing more acne.
  • Lack of light, as well as the gray air of winter, can trigger depression. Light therapy can treat depression disorders by giving patients various amounts of light, awakening the brain into thinking that the less gray seasons of summer and spring have come. This prevents patients from taking anti-depression medications, which can have side effects.
  • Light therapy can work into the body’s sleep rhythm, or circadian rhythm. Research shows that our sleep habits are governed by light, and light therapy exploits this fact by giving patients varying amounts of light at designated times of the day. This keeps patients from taking tranquilizers to get a good night’s sleep. It can also alleviate the pain of jet lag for frequent travelers.
  • Light therapy can treat skin diseases like psoriasis and eczema at a much faster pace than other therapeutics. Ointments and shampoos need months, even years to fully take effect.
  • If you are miles away from the beach, but still want to get a tan, you can go to an accredited tanning salon for UV light therapy. At safe doses, UV light can give you the tan that you want without you worrying about overexposure to the sun’s harmful rays.
  • Light therapy users claim that light rejuvenates their cells and gives them a more youthful, glowing look. This means less spending on expensive ointments and elixirs promising to turn back the clock on skin.
  • Light therapy has been shown to be largely effective for at least ninety percent of patients.
  • Light therapy can be done at home, with special light boxes. Although expensive, rising demand can lower the prices of such light boxes.
  • When done with the supervision of experts, light therapy can be controlled, and its effects monitored accordingly. That is, the amount of light, its intensity, and frequency can be measured and adjusted easily.
  • Light therapy is safe for many patients, if placed under the control and supervision of accredited experts.