Thai massage is one of the most relaxing and energizing form of massage techniques, which relaxes and soothes the body. The following article provides information on the same.
Thai massage is a system of massage and assisted stretching developed in Thailand, influenced by the traditional medicine systems of India, China and Southeast Asia.
Thai massage also called Nuad Boran, is a type of therapeutic massage and a branch of Thai medicine. It is an ancient healing art that combines Indian ayurvedic principles and yoga postures. This practice is believed to have been founded by a physician to Buddha named Jivaka Kumar Bhaccha, who is also regarded as the “Father of medicine” throughout Thailand. For centuries, it was practiced by Buddhist monks in temples as a component of Thai medicine for medical and spiritual healing.
Traditional Thai Massage
Rhythmic acupressure, body rocking and deep assisted stretches are used to relieve muscular tension and increase blood flow though out the body. Therapist uses hands, thumbs, palms, forearms, feet and elbows to promote general wellbeing by improving flexibility, relieving muscular aches and pains and stimulating circulatory and lymphatic systems. Traditionally carried out fully clothed on a mat on the floor (can also be adapted to a massage table) it is best to wear loose comfortable clothing.
The massage is also called “Thai Yoga Massage” as it moves your body to many yoga-like postures. Many people say that it is like doing yoga, but without any efforts. This is because a therapist will push your body at various yoga positions without your intervention.
This massage is performed on a padded mat on the floor. Since it doesn’t require application of oils unlike other techniques, you may be asked to wear loose and comfortable clothing. Initially, you will be asked to lie down on your back on the padded mat. A massage therapist will apply gentle strokes using his or her hands, knees, legs, and feet along the energy lines to open up the natural flow of energy in your body. The therapist usually starts off at the legs, and then moves on to other parts of the body. The session generally lasts for about 1 – 2 hours, and may be carried out on monthly basis. After the session is over, the person’s mind is spiritually uplifted and the body is completed relaxed.
Thai Massage Techniques
Thai massage is usually given only by licensed massage therapists who have had specific training in Thai massage. This type of massage relies heavily on stretching, compression and yoga-like body manipulations. These movements are meant to elongate the muscles and increase blood flow throughout the body. These are a few Thai massage techniques that we practice at Thai Odyssey.
Working the Lateral Torso and Shoulder
The therapist stabilizes the client’s arm over their leg while compressing the lateral border of the shoulder blade. This technique can relieve shoulder pain originating in the latissimus dorsi, serratus anterior and teres major muscles.
Backbend with Feet on the Back Lines
In this pose, the therapist compresses the spinal erectors while leaning back to bring the client into an assisted backbend. The spinal erectors often limit extension by painfully contracting when they are asked to shorten. Pressure from the therapist’s feet provides feedback to the shortening muscles and disables the normal pain reflex.
Knee Press the Glutes in Folded Leg Position
The folded leg position shortens the gluteal muscles. This pose compresses the piriformis and other glutes while also stretching the adductors. It is a very effective pose for piriformis syndrome, hip pain, sciatica and other complaints stemming from trigger points in the glutes and rotators of the hip.
Foot Press the Posterior Leg – Locked Position
This is a very efficient and strong pose for the therapist, making it possible to lean back and use body weight to bring the client’s leg into the foot pressure. A very effective technique for trigger points in the medial hamstrings and vastus medialis.
The benefits are many, including relief from multiple, diverse ailments ranging from asthma and migraines to sprains, bruises and anxiety. Thai massage improves circulation, strengthens the immune system, stimulates the internal organs and relieves stress.
- Aids detoxification of the body and boost the immune system
- Increases blood circulation, help to lower blood pressure
- Increases muscle flexibility and mobility
- Improves breathing and respiration
- Improves posture, balance and body alignment
- Dissolves energy blockages
- Helps arthritis and back pain
- Helps strengthen joints, including chronic joint problems
- Combats illness and alleviates degenerative diseases
- Helps with concentration and creativity
- Clears and calms your mind
- Helps you gain mental clarity
- Reduces and relieves stress and anxiety
- Helps boost inner energy levels
- Develops discipline and self-control
- Increases overall health and vitality