Trained in massage therapy and as a physical education teacher in Gorky, Russia, Sveta Yakubovich came with her family to America in 1993 with only $500, speaking very little English, but a strong will to make a better life. Wichita seems to be her perfect fit. In October of 2000, she opened Sveta’s Skin & Body Therapy in Bradley Fair and now nine years later; her salon offers a wide range of therapeutic massage services, reflexology, acupuncture, herbal medicine, deep cupping therapy, facials, body treatments, waxing, nails and her own line of skin care products.

You’ve just celebrated your ninth year in business, congratulations. What do you see for the future of Sveta’s Skin & Body Therapy? Are there changes you are thinking of making or additions you would like to see happen?

Thank you, nine years has gone by fast. Last year we started our instant Gift Certificate service. Customers can personally print out Gift Certificates or E“ mail them to someone. Our E“ Gift Certificates are great when the weather is bad and people can’t get out, but need a gift. You can go on“ line, pay with a credit card or PayPal, and then print the certificate out to use as your gift, or they can be mailed to you or the recipient. In addition to that we have an on“ line store. Many clients, who have moved, yet love our products take advantage of it. Our web“ site,, is a great reference for potential clients before they come into our facility. Sveta’s also provides massage therapy to hunters at Flint Oaks, a hunting lodge about an hour“ and “ a“ half from Wichita. Down the road, once the economy improves and if the space becomes available, I would love to expand because I really like our location.

When you came to America, did you think you would be successful?

I never really thought in terms of being successful — I ultimately was looking for a better life for my family. Massage therapy for me was more about survival. The opportunity came along to open my business and I seized it. We’ve been growing for the past nine years and I believe the success comes from the fact that I love what I’m doing.

You offer acupressure and acupuncture services, have you seen an increase in the demand or need for these services? (Sveta passed the national certification acupuncture exam in 2002 and received her Master’s in Oriental Medicine in 2008 from the Kansas College of Chinese Medicine in Wichita.)

Yes, more people are trying acupressure and acupuncture. More doctors are sending some of their patients our way, as well, especially those with chronic pain or other ailments that Western medicine can’t seem to help. I love to work on people like that

— those who’ve tried everything else, yet nothing seemed to work. In the future, I think there will continue to be an increase in demand for services like acupuncture. Several patients I see for pain relief have seen the cortisone shots they receive become less effective, or they simply want to avoid surgery. As more people become aware and knowledgeable of how acupuncture can help them, I see more of them using it.

What does having a regular massage do for people and do you have any health tips to pass on?

Massage is very healthy for you. Besides helping to calm and relax people, it enhances circulation and speeds up recovery. Personally, I don’t think people are touched enough in their lives. Massage is an effective way to provide for the basic human need for touch, along with promoting one’s health. It’s also very good for people of all ages, even for those who are very active by keeping their ligaments and tendons limber. As for general health tips, besides staying hydrated and eating well, people should look more to maintain balance in their lives. Along with devoting time to work and family, health wellness and disease prevention should be a personal priority. Massage can be an essential part of this dynamic — a selfish luxury that promotes your well-­‐being.

If you need a massage, whom do you go to?

I get one from my employees. They’re all excellent. If they are unavailable though, I get one from my husband. We give each other massages.

The Wichita Eagle