Just when you thought Christmas was over and you wouldn’t have to wrap anymore presents until the next person in your life inconveniently has a birthday… Otonamaki comes along.
Otonamaki – which directly translates as ‘adult wrapping – is a Japanese holistic healing therapy that sees customers wrapped into a fetal position and swathed in tightly-bound cloth for lengthy periods.
According to BBC Worldwide, the treatment is designed to alleviate posture problems and stiffness.
While it doesn’t look particularly comfortable and there’s definitely no massage or whale song involved, Otonamaki is gaining in popularity with people all over Japan.
The practise in inspired by Ohinamaki, a treatment which sees babies wrapped up in cloth in a similar fashion to tune babies to the feeling of being swaddled.
Orie Matsuo of Kyoko Proportion, one of several companies that offer Otonamaki to its customers, told the BBC:
The reason why Otonamaki was invented was because some people were worried about babies struggling or feeling claustrophobic while being wrapped up.
We thought if adults were rolled up like them, they could experience how good it feels.
— MaximuS D. MeridiuS (@the_last_one_) December 25, 2016
Kyoko Proportion first introduced the practice in 2015 and, so far, 70 people have experienced Otonamaki at the hands of their practicians.
Customer reviews have thus far been glowing, with many people claiming it frees tension in their back and delivers an unbeatable feeling of relaxation.
However, the therapy is not yet mainstream.
In fact, many holistic healers in Japan think it may cause adverse effects on your back and spine.
So while fitness gurus await the medical jury’s prognosis on swaddle treatment, people with claustrophobia can rest easy: This is one wellness trend that your physiotherapist won’t be recommending anytime soon.
A former emo kid who talks too much about 8Chan meme culture, the Kardashian Klan, and how her smartphone is probably killing her. Francesca is a Cardiff University Journalism Masters grad who has done words for BBC, ELLE, The Debrief, DAZED, an art magazine you’ve never heard of and a feminist zine which never went to print.