Benefits of GIVING Thai Massage

Much is said for the healthful benefits of receiving Thai massage, the holistic, healing and often life changing energy based bodywork from Thailand. Its benefits lie in the fact that Thai massage addresses the whole person – body, mind and spirit. Its attention is broad, complete, hopeful, honoring and trusting of each person’s innate ability to heal and become well. It is based on the concept that a life force energy circulates along energy pathways throughout the body, maintaining health and vitality. It works along these energy pathways to correct imbalances and remove any restrictions that can result in pain, tension or dis-ease. By facilitating energy to flow freely and unrestricted, tension eases, pain lessens, flexibility increases, blood and lymph circulation improves, elimination of wastes and toxins is enhanced, body-mind energies come into balance and the person relaxes and experiences an overall sense of well-being. Yes, much is said about the benefits of receiving, but less about the benefits of giving – and Thai massage is beneficial for the giver.

Traditional Thai massage, is the sacred healing bodywork of Thailand, but has influences from other countries, cultures and medical traditions. Its origin is credited to an Indian physician Jivaka Kumar Bhaccha, also known as Doctor Shivago Komparaj, who is said to have been the personal physician and friend to the Buddha over 2500 years ago. It’s influences include acupuncture, herbs, and Tui-na massage from China and Ayurvedic massage, yoga asanas (postures) and Buddhism from India.

An important aspect of Thai massage is that it applies the Buddhist teachings of the four divine states of mind – metta (loving kindness ), kuruna (compassion), mudita (sympathetic joy) and upekkha (equanimity). Metta is the desire to make others happy and the ability to show loving kindness. Kuruna is having compassion for those who suffer and the desire to ease their suffering. Mudita is rejoicing in sympathetic joy with those who have good fortune and never feeling envy. Upekkha is regarding others with equanimity, having a state of composure arising from a deep awareness and acceptance of the present moment, without preference, prejudice, judgment or criticism. While applying the qualities of metta, kuruna, mudita and upekkha with the desire for the receiver’s well-being, the giver creates a moving meditation, mindfully flowing from one position to the next. This benefits the overall health of not only the receiver, but the giver as well.

Thai massage is also beneficial to the giver, as it encourages him or her to be healthy and balanced – physically, emotionally and spiritually. In order to give an effective and quality Thai massage, one must be in good physical and emotional condition with plenty of energy. Since Thai massage is such a close and intimate form of bodywork, it is important for the giver to feel as healthy, or healthier, than the receiver. Being in good condition makes it easier to focus, tune in to the receiver’s needs and create a circuit of energy between giver and receiver that benefits both.

Thai massage appears more tiring and strenuous than it actually is. By using good body mechanics and leverage, rather than forced muscle strength, it is not straining and takes less effort than is apparent. Often, the giver feels invigorated following a session. When done mindfully and with proper technique it can be quite relaxing. The giver remains in a meditative state of mind while stretching and strengthening his or her own body. During the massage, it is important the giver stay relaxed, mentally scanning his or her body for areas of held tension. By constantly self-correcting, breathing into tight areas and releasing any areas of tension as needed, the giver receives the health giving effects as much as the receiver.

In the West, Thai massage is often called Thai Yoga Bodywork, since giving Thai massage is similar to doing yoga. It shares similar benefits, such as increased flexibility and strength and improved circulation. As in doing yoga, giving Thai massage is also beneficial for internal organs and glands, as well as for all systems of the body including the muscular, vascular, digestive, endocrine and nervous systems. It improves the givers posture, body alignment and body awareness as well as his or her breathing and ability to remain balanced, centered, present and calm. Done regularly, it helps keep the giver healthy and young.

The beauty of Thai massage is that both giver and receiver benefit. There is a circuit of energy that flows between them during their therapeutic dance that is mutually balancing. Giver and receiver become co-facilitators in the practical expression of loving kindness that improves their well-being. Because of this, the giver may continue to practice the health enhancing art of Thai massage for a long time, even into their old age.

Pati Starzynski is an Illinois licensed massage therapist, a registered Thai therapist through THAI (Thai Healing Alliance International), is nationally certified through NCBTMB (National Certification Board of Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork) and is a professional member of AMTA (American Massage Therapy Association). She is also a certified yoga teacher through the Himalayan Institute in Honesdale, PA.

Pati is co-owner of One Point Connection where she enjoys the benefits of practicing the healing art of traditional Thai massage.

Thai Yoga Benefits

Editor: This is a guest post by Elena Mancini.

Thai Yoga Massage is definitely an ancient and sacred system of healing with roots in Yoga, Ayurvedic Medicine and Buddhist spiritual practice. Thought to happen to be developed over 2,Five centuries ago, it’s a unique and deeply powerful type of Yoga Therapy. Integrating rhythmic massage, acu-pressure, asanas (Yogic stretches), gentle twisting, energy work and meditation, Thai Yoga therapy stimulates and balances the flow of healing energy inside the body. It will help open areas that are blocked bringing the individual deeper into balance and harmony for health, happiness and wellness to be. Thai Yoga is definitely an optimal type of therapy for individuals who aim to powerfully release stress and increase vitality and well-being.

Thai Yoga is usually practiced on the ground on the thickly padded yoga mat. Also known as assisted yoga or active massage, it’s an interactive type of massage that needs the recipient’s active participation to ensure that the massage to occur. The recipient is going to be assisted into postures and stretches and experience having his / her weight manipulated to maximise the number of extension. Due to the shared intimate physical and spiritual space that the session requires, it is crucial to locate a licensed professional practitioner that puts the customer comfortable. The Thai Yoga product is a light method of stretching your body and strengthening the bond between mind, body and spirit. It’s a type of healing that benefits both practitioner and receiver.

Holistic Directories instead of conventional spas work best places to consider ethical, professional Thai Yoga practitioners.

A great certified Thai Yoga therapist with whom I’ve enjoyed powerful healing experiences is Sandra Gerhold at http://www.thaiyoganola.com – Ms. Gerhold is really a therapist of great integrity and practices Thai Yoga and lymphatic drainage in Ny and Louisiana.

Thai Massage Video from Bangkok

Here is a traditional Thai massage video that promotes a Thai massage school in Bangkok. You can see different Thai massage techniques demonstrated, although there is just music to it – no explanation or verbal guidance. But if you are wondering what a traditional Thai massage looks like – this will give you a good first impression.