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Lynn J. Babiera's complete Thai massage course notes
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Lynn J. Babiera
Tokyo, Japan
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May 5, 2022 - 12:33 pm
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Greetings! Hope all is well.

 

I have been away focusing on work related events. I'm happy to be back to focus on this course.

MODULE 12

I am so happy about the variety of options available for the leg and hip stretches since most of the time the people I work on are bigger than me. I attempted nearly all the versions of the calf stretches on my husband. His legs are sometimes tired because he runs a lot. He particularly enjoyed the version that includes the hamstring stretch. I guess I was doing it right! I took my time working on this stretch with him and focused on my breath.

I have a new student who is very eager and she recently started doing my yoga classes. She often speaks of her one side where she feels stiffness in her hip and lower back so I asked if I could work on her doing the piriformis technique. I first started with the circular movement and spent a while with this movement to get her warmed up and relaxed. As we progressed with the technique,  I could feel her relaxing a little more as I moved her legs to the first side. Then before moving to the second side I asked if my pace was okay and then moved to the other side. I did the technique a few times and I could feel how much she relaxed. She shared with me that she felt so much relief on her troubling side and that her lower back felt so much better too. 

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Shama Kern
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May 6, 2022 - 8:35 am
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Excellent, congratulations for your successful therapy session!

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Lynn J. Babiera
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May 30, 2022 - 8:42 am
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Greetings hope all is well 🙂

There was a little confusion on my end. I didn't see my post on module 12 (even though I knew I posted it )and so I posted feedback again. I deleted it and now so hoping this is correct. Sorry about that Smile

MODULE 13

I worked on my husband with this one. We went away for a few days and I needed to get some practicing in. I first warmed up his feet and legs and then practiced the scooping and circling techniques for discomfort. I found the scooping technique a lot more tricky than the circling one. I had his leg elevated since this option seemed a lot more accessible for me. When i was attempting the scooping technique, my husband said it felt like i was digging into his leg. So i softened my hands a little more and slowed down the movement. Maybe I was overthinking this one. I also attempted the circular movement technique and he said he preferred it over the scooping technique. Over the last few days I have been practicing the scooping technique and I think I have improved. I still find it a harder than the circular technique but I like a challenge and like to have more than one option available to me.  

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Shama Kern
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May 31, 2022 - 9:56 pm
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Regarding the 'disappeared post', sometimes this seems to be the case when a second page is started by the forum for your posts. Sometimes students don't realize that there is a second page, and they think that their post disappeared whereas it is just on page number 2.

Regarding the scooping, make sure to let the movement come out of your wrist. Don't lock your wrist as this will not feel right. Also focus on softness in your fingers and try to feel with your fingers rather than just doing something with them.

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Lynn J. Babiera
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June 12, 2022 - 12:49 pm
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Thank you for the feedback Shama and the advice. I did all of that and it worked out so much better.

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Lynn J. Babiera
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June 12, 2022 - 1:02 pm
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Greetings and my feedback for Module 14.

 

MODULE 14

I ended up working on one of my male friends to change things up. He goes once a month for Thai massage and I thought it would be a great opportunity to get his feedback on my progress and on this new material.

I chose to work on a few of the techniques. I asked what his issues were and it worked out perfectly because he highlighted his lower back felt tight because of he builds decks and installs awnings. We first started with the hip rocking and transitioned to the hip rocking on one side. This was a great place for me to work on my transitions from one side to the next which felt quite okay for me to do. He also said it felt smooth and he didn't notice the transition.I chose to move onto the half back arch stretch (with quad and hip flexor) and spent a little time here with this stretch. His back cracked a on each side and when it happened he said felt so good. He also highlighted that he could feel a great release from his back to his hips and thigh. This stretch was one of my favorites from this module because it addresses so much. Always room for improvement but I feel confident with what I achieved.

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Shama Kern
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June 12, 2022 - 9:07 pm
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"He also said it felt smooth and he didn't notice the transition."  -  Congratulations!

"He also highlighted that he could feel a great release from his back to his hips and thigh."  -  You are obviously doing very well.

"I feel confident with what I achieved."  - It sounds like you have every reason to feel confident.

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Lynn J. Babiera
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June 27, 2022 - 9:30 am
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Greetings everyone!

Here is my feedback on this module Cool

MODULE 15 

This module was very different to the others. I didn't have many options this past week in terms of working on someone, so I asked my husband. I started off with the hand on belly, and it was quite interesting to notice his breathing pattern, his temperature and also how long it took my husband to finally relax. I then attempted the double palm rotation and got into it until I hit a spot on his belly that tickled and he couldn't stop laughing. I suspect it is sensitive since the area is probably tight. I ended up having a good laugh too. We tried again, and I slowed the movement even more and focused on my breath and this time round he didn't laugh. He said it felt nice. I then attempted the thumb rolling under ribs and moving ribs to each side since he mentioned his chest felt rather tender due to his chest work out two days prior. I spent a longer time working in this area and then transitioned to elephant walking which was a huge hit. I still need to apply more attention to the double palm (push pull) technique. I did try it but I don't think I  have it quite down yet. I will watch the video a few more times and practice it until it sinks in. Other than that, I am happy I have learned these useful techniques. Thank you!

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Shama Kern
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June 27, 2022 - 10:13 pm
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I am glad to hear that you appreciate the abdominal techniques. It's good that you did them on your husband first to get some confidence. It's also easier to laugh with your husband than with clients, I imagine. Smile

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Lynn J. Babiera
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July 15, 2022 - 2:06 am
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Greetings! Hope all is well.

 

MODULE 16

I attempted most of the techniques after watching the video a few times. I worked on my good friend. The shoulder lift technique felt good and I could feel how my friend was enjoying it. I then transitioned to the one side one shoulder lift which also went well. I had to figure out the positioning of my body first, so I watched the video again to double-check.

This technique was also received well. The one side two hand shoulder circling helped my friend a lot because her shoulders felt very knotted up. She has been doing a lot of upper body strength work recently which most likely has caused some tension and tightness in her shoulders. Thereafter I attempted the shoulder row boat and tried my best to position myself correctly.

I focused on my breath and moved nice and slow. She commented that she felt a nice release which was very pleasing. The arm triangle was quite challenging for her because she has very tight wrists as well. When I  attempted to position her hand onto the floor it didn't seem possible. She said she felt a lot of discomfort too. So, I grabbed a blanket, rolled it up and placed it underneath her hand.

This worked and i was able to continue with the stretch doing it very gently. Do you have any other tips you can provide regarding this stretch for people with very tight wrists? Thank you Shama.

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Shama Kern
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July 15, 2022 - 4:17 am
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There are two ways to deal with tight wrists for this technique. One is to place the hand closer to the shoulder which reduces the angle in the wrist, and the other solution you figured out on your own with the blanket under the hand. But you will come across clients whose wrist is so tight that you will have to skip this technique altogether.

There are similar techniques that have more or less the same effect, but without stressing the wrist. You will learn one of them when you get to the side-lying position, and another one in the sitting position.

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Lynn J. Babiera
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July 29, 2022 - 6:02 am
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Greetings! Hope all is well.

MODULE 17

I asked one of my students if I could work on them with this one. I started off with the elephant walking technique. It felt very similar to the one we practice on the feet. I connected with my breath with the intention of keeping the movement nice and slow. When I attempted it for a second time, it felt smoother and more natural. I then transitioned into the sliding off hand technique. My student confirmed she felt a nice release in her shoulders which extended into her arm and then finger tips. Working on the three lines felt quite manageable. I spent some time on this since I felt she needed it from our chat we had prior to the session. When i was working on her right side she said she felt a sensation in her left foot. She said it didn't feel uncomfortable but pleasant. This was all so interesting! I then attempted the hand technique and also took my time here to focus on the squeeze and pull. Lots of room for improvement. My student said she she felt so much lighter and relaxed.

I wanted to try some of the hand techniques in an informal manner so I chose to practice the rest of the hand techniques on my husband. He was telling me about his day while I completed the alternating thumb stroking and also the simultaneous technique. While he was talking, I was listening but also stretching. He really it enjoyed it. I did too. This is such cool way to give someone a stretch wherever. He said it was very relaxing. I concluded with the wrist rotation and shaking. This was a great experience and I will share this with some of my friends. Thank you!

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Shama Kern
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July 29, 2022 - 7:55 am
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You are right, hand massage can be done separately without a special setting or mat. It tends to feel wonderful. I wish I could get a good hand massage every day. Smile

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Lynn J. Babiera
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August 13, 2022 - 10:05 am
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Greetings! Hope all is well.

MODULE 18

I really enjoyed this module. I am always drawn to techniques for back care. I learnt this module last week, practiced on a friend but felt like I had more room for improvement before moving ahead onto the next module.

 

The transitioning sequence is such a great addition. I practiced it a few times on my six year and then decided to work on my next door neighbor. This was her first time experiencing Thai massage. I attempted the transition sequence on both sides with the single arm traction technique. I then attempted the alternating traction lift. I wasn't completely certain that I was going to get the movement correct, but just moved with my breath. I ended up bending my knees and it felt comfortable for me. My neighbor said she quite enjoyed both techniques. They both felt very pleasing. I then attempted the movement where you place the clients hand down. I had to play around with it and after a few attempts I managed to get it right. Moving on to the spinal twists was what I really looked forward to. I only attempted the rotation technique. I noticed that I didn't position her arm correctly and had to go back and start again. The leg triangle spinal twist was very relaxing for her. She mentioned it a few times which made me feel so much more confident. I then attempted the figure eight shoulder move. I could sense while I was progressing into the movement with her, there was some uncertainty on her end. So I asked her and she said, maybe I should've explained the movement first so that she would know to just flow with the movement. I wonder if this is something that maybe also comes up for other therapists when clients provide feedback while in the session? Maybe I should have explained to her what I was going to do next since it was her first time. I appreciated the feedback. Overall the session went really well. There is lots of room for improvement as always and on the plus side my neighbor asked me when is the next session.Smile

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Shama Kern
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August 14, 2022 - 12:09 am
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Yes, sometimes it is a good idea to explain to new clients what you are doing to make them feel at ease. However this depends on what kind of communication style they use. This subject is dealt with in great detail in module 35.

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Lynn J. Babiera
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August 30, 2022 - 12:35 am
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Greetings, hope all is well.

 

MODULE 19 

I attempted the sequence over the weekend. My intention with this was not to overthink all the moves but to ensure that the techniques flow nicely and in a format that made sense. I always try my best to include as much as I can from what has been studied. There is a lot and because of that I have so much work to do to improve. But just like Yoga, this is a journey and there will always be room for growth and improvement. With that being said, I worked on a Yoga colleague of mine. I figured she would understand and would provide me with constructive feedback. I always start with the Chi Machine and then worked my way from lower body to upper body. The transitioning from one side to the other was of big importance to me and I really wanted to do a good enough job. It went pretty well and the feedback I received was that she didn't notice it. I took your advice and explained I was going to do the figure 8 right before we attempted it. She said she liked the approach of informing her and it also helped her relax more. All in all I was happy with what I achieved here. I look forward to working through the next set of modules. Thank you!Smile

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Shama Kern
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August 30, 2022 - 8:13 pm
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You are right, learning Thai Massage is a journey, and - just like with yoga - there is no end goal. You can always get better and learn more.

An unnoticed transition (by the client) is proof that you are doing a good job with it! Smile

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Lynn J. Babiera
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September 6, 2022 - 4:55 am
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Hello and hope all is well.

 

MODULE 20

It was nice change to start working on the other side of the body. I worked on my husband with this module.I made sure to place a pillow underneath his head to ensure his comfort. I attempted all the techniques in the this module. I asked about the pressure while working on the feet a few times but also had to deal with lots of laughter. I suspect his feet are pretty tight. I was looking forward to the calf and achilles tendon stretch and wanted to hear feedback. I asked him if he felt a good stretch in these two areas and he said he felt a very light stretch at his calf and a deeper stretch at the achilles. I watched the video again to double check if I was doing the technique correctly and I am confident that I was. He very much enjoyed the achilles massage and elephant walking on the legs. 

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Lynn J. Babiera
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September 6, 2022 - 5:56 am
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MODULE 21

I continued to work on my husband with this module. I struggled a bit with lifting his leg and then sliding under using the heavy method. I had to practice it a few times until I got it right. As I was progressing to work on the side of his hip I didn't block his leg properly, and it slid out. I repositioned myself and attempted the technique again. The second side went a lot better and I made fewer mistakes. The two techniques I thought would be the most challenging (prone triangle stretch & tibialis knee massage) ended up being the most enjoyable. I practiced the hamstring techniques on its own to focus on the positioning of my body so that I feel more confident. Lots of room for improvement. Smile Thank you!

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September 6, 2022 - 7:35 pm
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"He very much enjoyed the achilles massage..."  -  Isn't it amazing how the achilles tendon can produce such a positive reaction. I have heard that from many course students, by the way.

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