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Danae Dominguez' Complete Thai Massage course notes
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Danae Dominguez
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September 24, 2021 - 8:50 pm
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Module1

Most of the discussion in this module helped me with my work although is on the floor I had tried to used some on the table massage for work office requirements. As a massage therapist, I am frequently providing Swedish and deep tissue massage. I used to use more my arms strength but this coursed helped me a lot to change that and even working on the table massaged i learned to manage that and I’m using more my body weigh now, it took me a while to know the exact pressure since every patient is different, breathing is a plus to control my movements.

One of the many reasons I'm looking forward to performing Thai massage is being able to have better body mechanics. I have noticed that my mind is not in the right place if my breath is not in tune with my movements and my client. The patient’s facial expressions is like a tool for me to know if they need more or less pressure. I have found that breath work is equally important for the client as well, I always ask them to focus on their breathing and avoid holding the breath, I had various clients thinking that holding the breath, helps that to stand the pain, their thinking is that pain is gain and that’s another idea I had to work with them trying to make them understand that is wrong. Directing my client's through deep breaths, not quick, short breaths puts them into a more relaxed state of mind as well as makes my work more effective on their body. When I first started massage, I can definitely say my technique was more mechanical. I feel this Thai massage has helped with my ability to perform most of the therapist positions quite comfortably and in better tune. So excited to learn more and applied to people who need and enjoy it.

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Danae Dominguez
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September 24, 2021 - 8:58 pm
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Module 2 

The last few days I have kept your words in mind as I practiced on my clients. Am I relaxed, checked in with my body? Am I moving from my Hara, using good ergonomics?  Is my mind and breath calm, in sync with the person I’m working with?  Even after so many years it is great to check in again and

I had noticed that I have improve my ergonomic postures, I’m still working to be in sync with my client since some times they keep talking and I don’t want to be rude repeating  that they need to focus  on their breathing. This distract me and somehow drain my energy, it makes a huge difference e in my case when they don’t talk a lot, I feel that my conception and work is way better.

I love Qi machine. I have been incorporating it into my sessions. Sometimes the beginning, sometimes the end.  Every one loves it, it is definitely unique.

Thank you Shama! 

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Danae Dominguez
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September 24, 2021 - 9:23 pm
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Module3

This module teaching the foot techniques are amazing.I am using them both as a tool for diagnoses and a way to open the channels.  As I begin with body weight shifting from right to left foot on the receiver I see the twisting and opening of their knee, hips and back. This module has teach me of how much the hands and the feet can free up the channels for the whole body.  

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Danae Dominguez
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September 24, 2021 - 9:48 pm
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Module 4

Module four was very similar to module three.  At the end you get more detailed with the space between the tarsals and the ankle work.  I again have seen this not just as a foot but as the meridians and extensions moving through the foot.  I am seeing and feeling bigger shifts as I work in other parts of the body.  Things are moving and releasing more readily.  So many people that I have been trying these techniques on are happy. I had applied to a patient with plantar fasciitis, before I used to focus more on the calf muscles but now I added the foot technique and the feedback was very good, the patient mentioned that this was a plus and the benefits were more.

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Danae Dominguez
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September 24, 2021 - 11:40 pm
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Module #5

The biggest challenge I face is finding an ergonomically correct way of moving for these that works for me I’m realizing that this may take a while before I find that place where it flows.  Until then I practice until I find the correct spot for efficiency and comfort which translates to an even better experience for my client as time goes.

You are right, the muscles should be warmed up before stretching. I think a lot of therapist makes that mistake of not warming up the muscles before they start. I’m applying all this new techniques not just for the client but for myself and I feel the difference, happy to keep learning more!

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Shama Kern
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September 25, 2021 - 8:58 pm
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Hi Danae, welcome to the Complete Thai Massage certification program. Please take a minute to familiarize yourself with our certification checklist to make sure that it is all correctly organized:

Certification Checklist

I already fixed some issues for you:

  • I changed your display name to your actual name
  • I added your name to your forum topic title

Without these changes, you cannot be found or identified in the forum.

Also we did not receive a certification registration from you. Without that we cannot issue a certificate (because we don't know which certificate you want). You can find the link to the registration form by clicking on the 'Certification Information' banner in the sidebar of your membership portal. This will take you to our 'Certification Tutorial'. If you scroll down, you will find the 'Certification Registration' section.

Aside from these technical things, your posts sound like you got off to a good start with the course. I have no doubt that you will be doing well with it. Smile

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Danae Dominguez
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September 27, 2021 - 7:28 pm
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Module #6

Love the forearm techniques, seems to just flow and comes much easier as far as a whole body movement. This is a great way to work many areas for me learning and applying it inside of the thigh close to adductors muscles gave me great feedbacks from my patients, it also save my fingers a ton especially my thumbs!

This for me is a very comfortable posture and a great way to save my fingers. I’m still working on getting the good  soft sinking in instead of pressing down. One of the thing I’m struggling with is the correct pressure. I was feeling some pain on my shoulder and I notice my pressure was not correct and my speed, for some reason I was doing it a little fast sometimes. I’m trying to connect my pressure and breathing so my body can relax when doing this technique.

 

This module focused on using the forearms as a tool in massage, specifically on the legs, I love it!

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Danae Dominguez
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September 27, 2021 - 8:47 pm
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Module #7

The hip evaluation via the feet position it’s a great information it really help me to know better what other areas I must obverse and put the the work on, it’s amazing to see how connected the body is. Moving the feet as you show in the video helped me to find a lot hip imbalances on my patients that they weren’t aware of. Warming up the body before start working also gave me better results, I notice that the body is not stiff and let it go easy during the movements, it’s like I gain the body trust.

I felt very comfortable with these movements, but I’m still working on my  breathing and body pressure when I lean forward. 

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Shama Kern
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September 27, 2021 - 9:56 pm
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Got your certification registration, thanks. However, your full name (all 4 of them) won't fit on the certificate. Is there one name we could omit or abbreviate?

It seems that you figured out the solution to your 'correct pressure' issue on your own, at least in theory. The rest will come with repeated practice.

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Danae Dominguez
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September 27, 2021 - 10:17 pm
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Module 8

The hip concept is very helpful working the hips with the leg movements, I found one client that complain of pain were the left connect with the hip, as you show in the video I applied the rocking technique moving the leg sideways to loosen up the hip joint and then assisting the receiver by gently working on the ROM. I am not as fluid as I would like to be during transitions but the descriptions are great and will allow me to practice and improve. In my experience, yoga works similarly for me in terms of postures and transitions between them. And working with my breath. In yoga and Thai massage, I catch myself holding my breath when I am unsure or struggling. I'll keep working at it.

Shama, I have a hard time when my client is very flexible and/or very thin, what suggestion would you give me?

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Danae Dominguez
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September 27, 2021 - 10:46 pm
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Module 9

I'm working on relaxing more into the 180* stretch and with not sinking too far. I tend to want to just use my upper body. But I am trying to remain mindful of this tendency and to improve my ergonomics. I'm still nervous to step on the foot to brace the receiver. So, I currently just brace their foot by placing my foot up against their foot. I always ask clients for feedbacks, if the pressure is good and if any movement is painful. I love using the scale from 1 to 10 so that I can back off a bit if I’m doing to much. It also offers me a chance to discuss my belief that we don't need to cause pain to make progress.The gentle rocking spinal twist is very tolerable for my least flexible client. Very nice to have so many options and adaptations to accommodate different body types and levels of flexibility.

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Danae Dominguez
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September 27, 2021 - 11:14 pm
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Module 10

I love this concept to focus on the hara for both the wellbeing of clients and myself. I practiced on a big client the version of the 270 degree stretch. The client loved it.The adductor stretch using my foot and walking with the toes is great, I’m repeating my self ‘soft’ as you mentioned before and putting more attention to my hara. The lower spinal twists is amazing, I relate these movements with the one I regularly utilize in my yoga classes. It's a relief to know that we aren't expected to remember and incorporate every single technique you are showing us. It's also nice to know that there are multiple ways to do each technique to allow for height, flexibility and pain threshold differences.

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Shama Kern
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September 28, 2021 - 4:59 am
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You didn't reply to what I wrote in my last post. Here it is again: 

"Got your certification registration, thanks. However, your full name (all 4 of them) won't fit on the certificate. Is there one name we could omit or abbreviate?"

Regarding your question about working on very flexible persons - could please specify what exactly you are having a hard time with? Sometimes when working on flexible persons, the stretches don't seem to do much. That is true. There are people who don't really need the stretches since they are already so flexible. In this case you don't focus on stretches, but on techniques that promote energy flow, relaxation, and well-being. That will become more evident throughout the course.

If this doesn't answer your questions, please rephrase it so that I understand exactly what you mean.

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Danae Dominguez
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September 28, 2021 - 8:15 pm
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Danae M. Dominguez Alvarez

Thank you for the explanation, that answered my question.Smile

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Danae Dominguez
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September 28, 2021 - 8:38 pm
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Module 11

Observing you sequence and watch how you are flowing from one move to the other helps me understand the previous modules better. As you said I’m trying to follow the flow depending the client needs and not to worry about memorizing the step or the technique sequences.I know that time and practice will help me to improve and add more techniques in each session. I’m struggling a little working with my whole body and not an isolated part however each time I feel a little improvement.

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Danae Dominguez
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September 29, 2021 - 12:20 am
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Module 12

Working on the legs and hips.

I’m trying to be extra mindful on body movements and flow, I feel that I’m getting smoother in my transitions. Calves and low-back muscles are often tight in many of my clients so including this technique feels like giving them a treat or at least that the feedback I had received.The double knee to chest stretch-power version was a challenge for me, but I love it it helps me to control my body weight better.Elephant walk in knees for the sacrum, my clients love it plus the circling. The hip and piriformis stretch I applied on a client with sciatic problem and she felt great after it, saying that the tension and pain was significantly less than before.

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Danae Dominguez
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September 29, 2021 - 12:48 am
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Module 13 last of the Hip Pie

Thigh abductor tendon, I like all 3 techniques, I was able to apply it to a person who has an injury in that tendon. I’m so happy that you showed how to work that area, this person has been dealing with this discomfort for 3 or more months, today was the first day I applied the technique using the 1-10 method, the tension has lessen in intensity. My person can’t wait for the next practice session :). 

Shama would you suggest any other technique or any suggestion to help this person with the abductor tendon discomfort? Since is being there for more than 3 months I assume is chronic, in your personal experience how long do you think  could take to help that area?

I have performed the hip pie stretches on certain  clients on the table for years having the added rocking, circling and wiggling helps to soften the thigh attachments and soften the muscle belly.

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Danae Dominguez
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September 29, 2021 - 1:22 am
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Module 14

Hip Rocking

The hip rocking is so pleasant and easy to give and receive. I had the previous experience of getting Thai massage and this technique was applied to me, that helps me a lot to understand how my person was feeling and somehow it also helped me to know how to do it. I appreciate your description of the natural flow you feel when letting the rhythm of the tissues guide the rocking. started adding in the single hip-rock and getting used to it.  

One of the things I like best about Thai massage is that my body also benefits.

My client commented that the lower back felt really good and loose after the half back arch stretch. I noticed that I tend to slouch over but I’m working on that correction.

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Danae Dominguez
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September 29, 2021 - 1:29 am
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Module 15

Abdomen-Chest

Breathing with client in the beginning seems to introduce the trust needed for being touched and worked on. The “Rotating plate” on abdomen clockwise for warmup is very nice as I can feel the client’s breath slowing down and deepening as I go around and sometimes I can feel and hear the guts working.

I especially love this because it is not offered in most regular massage sessions either and yet we all need it, especially because of what you mentioned: emotional storage.The gentle circles under the collarbones and the elephant walking on the shoulders was easy and the client liked both of them.  It was not difficult to find the soft spot between the shoulders and the rib area.  

Like all the other stretches, once I relax, breathe, slow down and use my whole body weight it is an entirely different experience for the client and myself.

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Shama Kern
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September 29, 2021 - 7:46 am
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Regarding your question about working on tight tendons - tight tendons can be quite painful and stretching can be overkill initially. In such cases I like to use circling and rocking movements to loosen the tendon without stress, and I like to use techniques like rolling up with the heel of my hand which is also a motion technique without linear pressure. In other words, a lot of warming, and then follow up with stretching.

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