I studied Thai Massage at the Swedish Institute in New York City. Thai Massage is an interactive manipulation of the body using passive stretching and gentle pressure along energy lines. These movements help to
adjust the skeletal structure
- increase flexibility
- relieve muscular and joint tension
- stimulate internal organs
- balance the body's energy system
The effect is uniquely relaxing as well as energizing. Receiving a Thai Massage is a bit like doing yoga without putting forth any effort while also getting acupressure treatments.
Sessions typically last two hours, and are performed on a floor mat with the client dressed in comfortable loose clothing. Thai massage uses two primary procedures - applying gentle pressure with the hands and feet, and a wide variety of passive stretching movements.
With these techniques, applied in a quietly meditative atmosphere, space is created in the muscoskeletal structure, the body begins to open and regain flexibility and ease of movement, while the mind gently returns to calm alertness. Tension and toxic material is released from the joints, muscles, and connective tissue. The energy body, as well as the internal organs, are stimulated by pressure on peripheral reflex points.
The work displays an inherent knowledge of the inner workings of the body, a knowledge that developed over centuries of practice. There is something in the essence of this work that appeals to a wide range of people on a core level; something that satisfies their physical and emotional needs, and perhaps even assists in their spiritual needs.
It appeals to people, and is effective, because it treats the client with respect while encouraging them to let go of physical and emotional restrictions and to go beyond their present limitations. Or, as a client once observed, "it's a whole and total approach to wellness" which allows one to "feel in harmony with the rhythms of life".
This ancient therapy is beneficial for young or old, active or inactive, healthy or not so healthy. While each person will respond to this work in terms of their own experience and present state of health, it is well to remember that Thai Massage has been used for countless generations to treat degenerative conditions and promote wellness.
Thai Massage facilitates a sense of unity, wholeness, and balance. It creates a dynamic physical experience which integrates the body, mind, emotions and spirit.
The Traditional Medical Massage of Thailand, more commonly known as Thai Massage, is one of the world's oldest healing modalities. It originated in India during the Buddha's lifetime, over 2500 years ago, and was brought to this world by a saint, the "Father Doctor Shivago Komarpahj", a contemporary of the Buddha and some say his personal physician and the physician to the King of India.
As Buddhism spread out from India, this healing medicine spread with it. Early in its development it found its way toSoutheast Asia where, for centuries, it was performed by monks as one element of indigenous Thai medicine. The Thai people, like many others in the orient, saw illness as an imbalance in the body/mind/spirit and they would seek help at the local temple. They were treated with the four elements of traditional Thai medicine:
nutritional counseling (focusing on diet)
herbs (given both internally and externally)
spiritual counseling (primarily meditation and the Buddhist principles)
and Thai Massage (which formed the backbone of the physical treatment).