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Lauren Kramer | 10/01/2021 | Attractions, Food & Hidden Gems, Insider Blogs, Spa, Health & Fitness, Unwind |   

Going with the Flow: Himalayan Salt Cave Therapy, Yoga, and Healing at Flow Motion in Ferndale

There’s a fabulous wellness sanctuary in Ferndale, Washington, a place tucked away on the second floor of the historic Carnation Building that is full of rooms dedicated to healing. Chances are you’ve driven past it, just off of Main Street, without knowing it’s there.

That’s because from the outside you’d never know about the hidden gems inside: an infrared salt sauna, an amethyst cave and a Himalayan salt cave where some five tons of salt imported from Pakistan line all four walls. There’s yoga in a sunlit room filled with indoor plants and some of the best massage therapy you’ll ever experience delivered by a therapist with magic hands and a soul that emanates kindness.

Flow Motion is the brainchild of Alyssa Springs, who moved to Bellingham from Mississippi in 2011. She opened Flow Motion in the yoga studio of the Carnation Building and later merged with belly dance and Zumba classes, along with a sauna and relaxation lounge. That was in 2014, and she was just getting started.

“I always wanted a larger sanctuary space where I could focus on the healing arts,” she reflected. “I’d been to salt caves elsewhere and wanted to build one where folks could go together, a place that would be affordable, social and healing all in one.”

She designed Flow Motion to be what she calls a ‘third space,’ an alternative to home and work that would bring friends and family together to recuperate and relax. More recent additions to the healing sanctuary include the infrared hot yoga, which debuted in 2017.

Travel Tip: Flow Motion has partnered with local hotels to offer discounts for visitors coming specifically for Flow Motion! Enjoy hotel discounts and referrals for great restaurants, things to do, and beautiful drives from the Flow Motion Team.

“Infrared heat warms your body directly without heating the air temperature,” she said. “It’s like standing in the sun and absorbing the heat from the sun. It helps avoid inflammation and alleviates joint aches and pains.”

The amethyst crystal cave opened in 2019, featuring a salt waterfall and gemstone-encrusted walls. Shortly after, the salt cave debuted, offering halotherapy and infrared heated salt pebbles on the floor. 

The salt particles in the air help relax airways and thin mucus, helping the body clear it out. While salt therapy is not a cure, many people find relief from visiting the salt cave.

“It helps keep your immunity up and helps you recover faster from flu and colds by loosening mucus and phlegm,” Springs says. “We don’t make claims that we can cure anything, but time in the cave certainly helps with preventative treatment.”

Building the salt cave became a community project that took a few months to complete. “When those 54,000 pounds of Himalayan salt arrived we had to cut every boulder of salt ourselves and hand-place them on the walls,” she recalled. Members of the community came out to help build the first ever salt cave not just in Ferndale, but in Whatcom County. And Springs has had guests from Burlington, Auburn, Kent, Kirkland, Seattle, Arlington and as far as Vancouver, Wa., coming out to reap the benefits of time spent in the cave.

Today her healing sanctuary occupies 7,500 sq feet in the Carnation Building. In addition to the two caves and the sauna, she has a relaxation room with comfy couches and a water cooler filled with gemwater. 

In another area guests can enjoy time in the deluxe massage chairs, or curl up on a couch in the library nook and select a book from the well-stocked bookshelf.

I spent a blissful 75 minutes in a morning yoga class before succumbing to a massage that took me straight to heaven and back. How guests want to spend time at Flow Motion is up to them, but Springs has created different tiers of monthly and annual memberships to respond to various needs. Each tier comes with discounts to other services, such as salt cave sound baths, salt cave yoga workshops, regular yoga workshops and sessions in the infrared sauna.

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