THE TRADITIONAL Thai massage we have come to know and love today was first practiced over 2,500 years ago by Shivago Komarpaj, a North Indian physician said to be a close friend of Buddha.
It has roots in Chinese and Indian medicine, however, the records that detail the blossoming of techniques were destroyed in the 1767 Burmese battle in Ayutthaya, Thailand.
But the lost records didn’t deter the practice, and after World War II ended, Thailand became a popular tourist destination, and so globalized the ancient massage practice.
Concentrating on healing the mind and body, the traditional methods involve combining deep tissue massages and assisted yoga poses while following the body’s energy map, known as Sen lines in Chinese acupuncture.
Traditionally, the massage involves no essential oils and the receiver remains fully clothed sprawled out on a floor mat.
If this reminds you of a chiropractor session, that’s because it pretty much is.
Thai massages and some chiropractic techniques are one of the same. The dynamic techniques, and alleviating muscle manipulation will leave you feeling limber and light.
These are the five core benefits of indulging in a Thai massage and trust us, your body will thank you.
Get your energy back on track:
The daily grind can leave us feeling exhausted, both mentally and physically.
Enter the Thai massage, which pays special focus to your Sen (or energy) lines mapped throughout the entire body.
Each line has its own unique energy points, which can be heightened through the application of pressure.
These points can be found all over, from your earlobes right down to your baby toes. Once they’re stimulated, you’ll feel the energy flowing from within.
Help your blood flow:
Our blood flow keeps us alive, oxygenating our brains and preventing us from losing our extremities.
So, it’s bizarre then that we don’t do more to help pump the crimson sticky stuff around our bodies.
But even just a short 20-minute Thai massage can help.
Through pressured touches, stretching muscles and maneuvering joints, the Thai massage stimulates blood flow which then helps to improve hair growth, and naturally warms your extremities.
Touch your toes again:
Do you excuse your inability to touch your toes because of age, disproportionate leg-to-body ratio, or because it’s child’s play?
Who are you kidding – you just simply can’t touch them.
Let a Thai massage take care of that. Therapists have hundreds of stretches they can apply to your specific needs, whether it is to limber up your shoulders, release tension between every vertebra, get you looking over both shoulders again or to create a new bendy party trick.
Rebalance your happiness:
Serotonin controls the feeling of happiness, and boy does it feel good when your brain releases it.
However, when the stress hormone known as cortisol is released, happiness retreats back into the shadows and a smile can become a furrowed brow.
But a Thai massage can increase the amount of serotonin produced, which is why you can’t help but feel relaxed and content when the therapist is working their magic.
Drifting into a sweet slumber:
If your own snoring has ever woken you up in a massage, you’ve experienced first-hand how incredible the trained touch can feel to the body.
Being pampered into a sleep in a warm room, smelling how you would imagine Mother Nature to smell, is a fine way to drift off.
You can replicate some of these sleep-inducing techniques in your own bedroom too.
Try massaging your forehead in a circular motion, stroke your limbs gently or work your thumbs around the soles of your feet to treat nerve endings with the respect they deserve.
Sometimes the solutions to your aches and pains don’t lie in the bathroom cabinet, but rather in the hands of a trained masseuse.