SEFFNER — Through much of her life, Sarah Ball suffered from frequent migraines and chronic back pain from scoliosis.
"I tried all sorts of things," the Riverview native said. "Massage was the only thing that helped."
Massage therapy did more than allow Ball to live pain-free. It gave her the inspiration for her career.
She became a licensed massage therapist herself, and after working in a spa for a few years she started her own practice. Massage Therapy of Brandon opened just before Christmas.
She specializes in deep-tissue massage — an extended massage used to treat specific pains or movement problems — but she also offers relaxation massage (also called Swedish massage) and express relief massage, which is a quick massage to relieve stress and minor aches and stiffness.
Prices start at $25 for a 25-minute express relief massage to $90 for an 80-minute deep-tissue massage. Insurance covers some procedures.
Massage Therapy of Brandon is at 2027 S Parsons Ave., between Wheeler Road and Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard. Hours are 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily, and Saturdays by appointments. Call (813) 643-4444 or visit massage therapyofbrandon.com.
Valrico woodworker hones from home
VALRICO — George Lindsey has been a woodworker almost all his life, and he has learned the value of sharp tools.
In the mid '90s, he acquired professional sharpening equipment, and before long everyone in his Long Island town was bringing him knives, chisels, lawn mower blades and anything else that needed to be sharpened.
Lindsey moved to Florida a couple of years ago and recently started George's Sharpening Service, a business out of his Valrico home.
It takes skill and experience to properly sharpen knives and other tools, Lindsey said. A blade honed to too fine an edge can be weakened, and a professional sharpener can achieve just the right balance of sharpness and durability.
Lindsey said he can sharpen just about anything except for scissors used by barbers and hairstylists. Those tools require specialized equipment.
Sharp knives and tools are more important than some people realize, he said. A dull kitchen knife can force you to use more pressure, thus increasing the risk of injury. Dull mower blades can damage lawns.
"And the thing is, people don't realize that their tools are getting dull, because it happens gradually," Lindsey said.
Lindsey will pick up and deliver just about anything that needs to be sharpened. He can usually return an item within 24 hours of receiving it. He inspects each item and gives a price in advance. Sharpening a 10-inch chef's knife might cost about $7 to $8, depending on its condition; sharpening a woodworking chisel might cost $15.
"I think my prices are extremely competitive," Lindsey said. "But it's hard to say, because there aren't too many people doing this that I can compare it to."
Besides sharpening, he repairs any nicks on the blade, so the tool ends up being as good or better than a brand-new item, for a fraction of the original price.
The number is (813) 758-2058.
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