Chiropractic session, from Dhs255 The Dental SPA (04 395 2005), Jumeirah Beach Road
While The Dental SPA may not sound like it boasts chiropractic services, looks can be deceiving. Nestled in the heart of this primarily dental establishment, Dr Raslan’s room is stacked with terrifying spinal replicas, piles of medical tomes and enough certificates to qualify him for the back-straightening Olympics.
But, aside from all his bumf, it’s the bizarre chair stationed in the centre of the room that grabs our attention. Part instrument of torture, part massage table, Time Out was suitably concerned as we slipped into a clinical hospital robe for a 15-minute electrical current session to warm the muscles in our back. (Think of a fly getting zapped on one of those lamps in professional kitchens, and throw in some irksome panpipe music.)
‘Relax,’ intones Dr Raslan, explaining that tension in muscles can hinder his work. ‘The more relaxed you are the straighter you’ll be standing.’ Just getting out intact would suffice, we think, as we’re pushed and pulled in all manner of directions. Forget the brutality of Thai massage, this is a whole different ball game, especially as the deafening cracks and crunches fill the peach-coloured room.
But it’s not all distressing – there’s a definite rush of energy as Dr Raslan works his way round our hunched shoulders, pressing all the right buttons. The feeling is akin to being rugby tackled by a 50-year-old man, but coming away positively chipper and straightened out. There was even a moment in the 45-minute treatment when Time Out was lulled into a slumber, only waking to find the treatment was over and we were – despite any initial reservations – sitting up straight and standing up tall.