Best Massage Therapist: Katie Gilbert, Katie Gilbert Massage Therapy
Always the athlete, Katie Gilbert first became interested in massage therapy after it helped her heal quickly from an injury she received while running track in college. It propelled her to study at a program in Costa Rica, and she’s now been practicing the art for the past eight years.
“With a background in sports and how I address the body, I feel that I’ve really taken to the profession and have been able to help a lot of people in the community,” Gilbert said.
The novel coronavirus pandemic hasn’t negatively affected Gilbert’s business. Instead, she noted an increased interest in massage therapy as residents struggle to navigate the added stress. More people are drawn to massage and are adding it to their health care routine as they realize the benefits, she said.
“I’ve been doing massage for eight years, and I’ve been able to see how massage can play a part in your overall health if you do it on a regular basis,” Gilbert said.
She added that some people take their nervous system for granted.
“With COVID, the election and everything coming up, everyone’s nervous system is on alert,” she said. “They’re scared, worried. Having something like massage can relax the body — getting that nervous system to relax and reset while still being in the present moment is huge.”
This is Gilbert’s second year in a row winning Best Massage Therapist in the Best of Summit contest. She specializes in deep-tissue massage and says many of her clients particularly note her “strong hands.” She also specializes in muscle overuse, injuries and bringing sore and stressed-out bodies back into balance. She also practices ashiatsu, a barefoot massage technique that uses deep strokes from the therapist’s feet.
Gilbert first moved to Summit County to “be a ski bum” from 2009-2012 before studying abroad in Costa Rica. She said she returned to the area to practice the techniques she learned from some of the most well-known massage teachers across the nation. She loves being surrounded by athletes in Summit County, where so many people are living an active lifestyle. Working in the area has been helpful to her practice as she sees many different types of injuries and muscle issues. She enjoys being able to tailor her care to each individual, as every injury is different.
“I love getting after it,” she said. “I ski, snowmobile, get into the backcountry. In the summer, I enjoy hiking, dirt biking and mountain biking. I love living this active lifestyle. … It is important to abuse our bodies but also to take care of them, whether it’s with massage, nutrition or physical therapy. … It’s important to do the things that we love.”
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