THAI MASSAGE TECHNIQUES VS. CLASSIC WESTERN STYLES
Those who are experiencing a Thai massage for the first time may be in for some pleasant surprises. There are a few key differences between Thai massage techniques, and those "regular" methods traditionally practiced by western massage therapists.
The first difference you'll notice is the lack of equipment. Whereas Swedish and deep tissue massages take place atop a massage table, Thai massages take place upon a floor mat. This allows the client a more complete range of motion, which comes in handy. Unlike western massage styles, you won't just be lying on your back or stomach when you receive a Thai massage.
Neither will your Thai massage therapist, who receives an even greater advantage by being on the floor rather than hunched over a table.
During a Thai massage, the LMT moves all around and above the client to access a wider range of angles over each part of the body, even in cases when the client is much larger than the therapist.
Rather than just using hands, fists, forearms and elbows — the standard tools of the Swedish massage; Thai massage may use legs and feet during the massage. Oftentimes, they will use a combination of both to gain leverage as they initiate deep stretches of the client's arms, legs, hips, and shoulders.
Thai massage uses ancient stretching and massage techniques to leave you feeling free and relaxed.
Traditional Thai massage uses no oils or lotions. The recipient remains clothed during a treatment. There is constant body contact between the giver and receiver, but rather than rubbing on muscles, the body is compressed, pulled, stretched and rocked.
ORIGINS OF THAI MASSAGE
Traditional Thai Massage is an ancient healing technique that has been in popular use in Asia since the time of The Buddha (roughly 500 b.c.).
The practice itself manifests as a flowing dance that synthesizes the cumulative knowledge and techniques of many disciplines. Doctor Skivagakorpaj, Ayurvedic master and personal physician to the Buddha, is considered the originator of the form. Employing the graceful rooted movement of internal martial arts and the compassionate mindfulness instilled by the meditative experience of the practice.
Thai Massage is taught both as a form to follow and also as a key to improvisational bodywork. The essence of the practice is self-awareness, and the fluid expression that naturally extends from that awareness.
BENEFITS OF THAI MASSAGE
As an ancient healing art that combines the best of acupressure from Thailand and Hatha yoga from India, gentle rocking movements, deep rhythmic compressions, a variety of stretching movements and restorative yoga positions open the body’s complex network of tissue and energy lines.
Thai Massage relieves muscular tension and pain, improves circulation, boosts the immune system, and balances the body energetically, facilitating mind-body integration. A session of Thai Yoga Massage results in restoring a healthy, balanced energetic flow to the recipient.
It is a complete therapeutic treatment on its own, and may also be incorporated into other modalities of massage or into yoga classes.