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BrightFire: Bodywork & Wellness in the Greatest Town on Earth

Updated: Mar 31, 2022

Nicole Dickenson-Smith in a BrightFire Wellness therapy room with infrared sauna.

Nicole Dickenson-Smith moved to Groveland a decade ago to do social work in a wilderness setting and stayed because of the people. She went to school for Wilderness Therapy, but discovered her passion in being more hands-on in helping others. She founded BrightFire Wellness, working for herself, always learning, and bringing more to the table. The massage table, that is.

Ashiatsu means "foot pressure" in Japanese.

Nicole specializes in therapeutic work through massage. Her focus is on helping those with chronic pain, injuries, needing skilled relaxation, or all of the above. She recently added Ashiatsu to her tool belt, able to give heavy luxurious pressure through her hands and feet. (Ashiatsu is a massage technique that involves the application of the practitioner’s feet to a patient’s body. In Japanese, ashi means foot, and atsu means pressure; so it literally translates to foot pressure.)

BrightFire Wellness also offers yoga for private or semi-private sessions. “Feeling good in your body requires the knowledge to maintain it,” says Nicole. “As a massage therapist I take a beating on my body so I have to practice what I preach.” Yoga is a proven practice for people who are tight or stiff and Nicole loves seeing her regular bodywork clients reap additional rewards by sustaining the benefits through yoga.

Nicole received her 200hr yoga instructor training in the Sacred Valley of Peru. She teaches yoga at a level that anyone can walk in to. Her style focuses on mindful relaxation, deeply stretching the body, and building community, which she believes is an undervalued form of wellness. “Group yoga is an amazing way to bring people of all ages together to meet others in our town and it helps us all to be healthier together.”

You can find Nicole teaching group yoga at Around The Horn Brewing Company every other Wednesday evening, and she plans to add a Zumba class, bringing more “fun therapy” to BrightFire’s wellness repertoire.

You've heard of Goat Yoga? BrightFire offers you to Barmadillo Beer Yoga every other Wednesday evening.

“The small size of our community gives us all a chance to help shape it into the kind of town we want to live in,” claims Nicole. For her, it’s all about caring for our locals, who make up 90% of Brigh