What is a Thai massage
I’ve always been fascinated by Thai massage because it focuses on improving the flow of energy throughout your body. I find my work with reiki is similar to the energetic healing that happens with Thai Massage Sen lines. So, I was excited to research the history of Thai massage and how those techniques are being used today.
Thai massage combines Ayurvedic and traditional Chinese medicine theories. It has been practiced for over 2500 years. Anyone who is interested in energy work should receive a Thai massage. Honestly, the healing energy created with Thai massage is so cool! Especially if you have received other forms of energy work!
What to expect during a Thai Massage
First, be sure to wear loose-fitting clothing. You will remain fully clothed for this massage and you want to be able to stretch comfortably in every direction. Next, you will be asked to lie on the floor on a mat with pillows. Your therapist will slowly work your body through various stretches that resemble yoga poses. The therapist may use her hands, knees, legs, or feet to move your body into different positions. You should not experience any pain as your therapist stretches your body. But if you do, make sure you let her know so she can make the necessary adjustments.
Thai massage techniques
Thai massage combines several techniques. This includes meditation, acupressure, reflexology, yoga and often herbal compresses. The goal is to increase range of motion and balance your energy. Thai massage is done solely with rhythmic pressures and passive stretches. So lotion is not needed for gliding strokes often associated with Swedish massage.
A Thai therapist will follow a general rhythm of tapotement along the Sen lines on the recipient’s body. Sen is the Thai word for line. It is the same concept as Prana used in Yogic terminology. Sen lines are thought to be energetic pathways that give breath and thus, life to your body.
A therapist will use her legs and feet to help position the limbs of the recipient. It is also common for the therapist to use her arms to hold the body while her feet perform the massage. In the course of opening up the Sen lines the therapist may pull fingers, toes, and ears of the client. Additionally, the client’s knuckles may be cracked and the therapist may walk on the recipient’s back in order to stimulate the Sen lines.
Takeaways about Thai Massage
I first received a Thai massage on a trip to San Francisco and it was life changing. As a massage therapist I took a lot away from the body mechanics my therapist used. Later, when I became more interested in energy work I realized there was much more happening during my session than I originally realized.
You do not have to travel to Thailand to get a traditional Thai massage. But, hey- that would be amazing if it’s in your budget! However, like most Eastern modalities, tradition is very important. Often healing power and techniques are passed down from generation to generation. So, receiving a massage from someone who is culturally connected to those traditions will be very different than receiving a massage from someone who is not. This is not to say that someone from the West who has completed training in Thai techniques will not give you a great massage experience. I am just saying that it will be energetically different unless that therapist is fully immersed and culturally connected to the Thai traditions. In any case, a Thai massage is a great tool for keeping a healthy body, mind and spirit!