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Nicole Gordon Complete Thai Massage Notes
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Shama Kern
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July 6, 2020 - 12:24 am
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If your husband has lots of trouble with his knees, you might want to invest in our Thai Massage Knee Therapy course. It's not a big expense, just $47, and it will turn you into a real knee therapy expert. It goes a lot deeper than the knee material in the Complete Thai Massage course. Your husband would really benefit from that, especially since good knee work is hard to come by.

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Nicole Gordon
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July 9, 2020 - 4:12 pm
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Shama Kern said
If your husband has lots of trouble with his knees, you might want to invest in our Thai Massage Knee Therapy course. It's not a big expense, just $47, and it will turn you into a real knee therapy expert. It goes a lot deeper than the knee material in the Complete Thai Massage course. Your husband would really benefit from that, especially since good knee work is hard to come by.

  

I will definitely do that! I have a lot of massage clients that are always looking for knee work. In massage school there was hardly any time spent on the knees - they actually tell us to leave the knees alone and other than teaching the structure we didn't do much at all, so some good knee techniques would be great. 

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Nicole Gordon
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July 9, 2020 - 4:39 pm
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Module 9

 

I really enjoyed the moves in this module. I had no problems with my body mechanics at all. My husband really loves these techniques because he tends to be tight in his abductors and hips. He said he could feel the rotation technique in not only his thigh but in his glutes as well. 

The hamstring stretches were really goo. No issues with completing them and no client issues either.

The spinal twist was awesome and he loved it! Driving a big bus around NYC everyday gives him a lot of low back pain and this was great for him.  

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Shama Kern
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July 9, 2020 - 11:20 pm
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You seem to be a natural since the stretches and the body mechanics come to you so easily! Smile

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Nicole Gordon
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July 11, 2020 - 2:43 am
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Shama Kern said
You seem to be a natural since the stretches and the body mechanics come to you so easily! Smile

  

I don't think I'm quite a natural, lol. I think my years of taking exercise classes that force me to stretch before and after as well as focus on body mechanics during exercise in addition to being a massage therapist for the last 14 years has helped things come a little easier. In New Jersey we are required to take continuing education hours in order to renew our massage licences every two years, so I've taken some active isolated stretching classes here and there. I've just always found it hard to add that kind of treatment into regular massage sessions when people are naked on the table. I'm looking forward to offering mat work and then making the transition to predominantly mat based work in the future. I plan on still keeping my table and offering table massage but over the next few years it would be great to get rid of table work altogether. 

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Nicole Gordon
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July 11, 2020 - 3:07 am
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Module 10

I didn't have any real problems with this module except with the 270 degree stretch. Since my husband's leg is so long it was impossible to have his ankle in my groin area while keeping my inside leg against his leg that was on the mat, so I had the lowest part of his leg I could in my groin which ended up being more the upper middle of his calf and I supported his ankle in my outside hand. When I leaned into the stretch I gave a little tug on his ankle and pulled a bit on his outter thigh with my inside hand which helped give him more of a twist and helped me get the stretch into his low back and hamstrings.

Other than that everything else was pretty smooth. I look forward to putting it all together and working on making it flow. 

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July 12, 2020 - 11:37 pm
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Agreed, stretching on a naked person on a massage table is kind of awkward - not a good scenario. It is so much easier and more fun on a mat where you don't have any limitations when working on a fully dressed person.

It seems like you found a good modification for the 270 degree stretch. Modifying is a necessary skill in Thai Massage since there is much more size-dependent interplay between client and therapist than in table massage.

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Nicole Gordon
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July 16, 2020 - 10:12 pm
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Module 11

I feel like I found more of my "flow" when I tied everything together in this module. There were some things I kept out and other things I modified a little - for example the outter leg lines I found to be easier to work by sitting outside of the leg and leaning into the leg rather than sitting inside and pulling. I found if I hooked my down mat leg behind his leg and used the leg closer to his head to work the outter leg lines as I worked well also. I noticed I this will actually work the outter lines and also give a little extra work on the inner leg lines at the same time. Working the outter leg lines this way allows me to give a little more pressure without putting strain on my shoulder or arm. As I continue to practice I find there are many ways to make it work by slightly altering my body. Just like I no longer do table techniques the same way I learned in school, I see that the more I practice the more I feel confident to play around and try things different ways that work better for me, but that are still achieving the same result for my client.

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Nicole Gordon
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July 16, 2020 - 10:37 pm
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Module 12

I was really surprised that I was able to do some of these with my husband and his stiff body, lol. I guess all the practice I've been using him for has done him some good, lol. The only thing I modified a little was instead of kneeling when his legs were on my thighs was I stood up and did the knee to chest stretch with his knees on my thighs. Because his legs are so long, his feet are big, and his flexibility isn't so great, it was hard for me to position his legs on my stomach because the position of his feet was not comfortable for me and when his knees were on my thighs they kinda just flopped around too much.  When I stood up and put his feet on my thighs there was much more control and i could control the depths of the stretch by where I stood. 

I really liked the power hamstrings hip and back stretch. I wasn't sure I'd be able to do it on my husband but I did and he really loved this stretch. He said he felt like everything was being stretched. 

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July 17, 2020 - 12:32 am
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Sure, you can work the outside leg lines by sitting outside of the legs instead of in between them. There are often several ways of doing something in Thai Massage. It's a fun, creative and innovative modality! Smile

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July 25, 2020 - 6:18 am
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Module 13

The 1-10 method is something I use all the time with clients. If they're looking for deeper pressure or if they are looking to work on a particular issue that has been giving them problems, I always tell them the highest level they should go is about a 7 and I tell them discomfort is ok but pain is not so we want to stay out of the 8, 9, 10 range. 

When it came to the scooping, finger circles, and fingertip wiggling I definitely felt more comfortable doing the scooping and the circles. I can definitely see where the wiggling could be useful depending on the client, however with my husband being a little sensitive in that area I felt that the first 2 worked a little better with him. 

The 315 degree stretch did not work on my husband very well at first because I just didnt feel like I could get my positioning right, so I tried it on my son and when I went back to try it on my husband again I felt a little more comfortable. My biggest discomfort was that I couldn't get directly over him because to block with his foot with my one knee and keep my other knee in line with his hip, it made me a little too low to get proper positioning. It worked fine with my son so I feel like it's just much harder to do when someone is much taller than me.

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Nicole Gordon
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July 25, 2020 - 6:39 am
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Module 14

I feel like this module was definitely one of my favorites and my husband really loved this one because the rocking and twisting helped his low and mid back a lot!

I thought I was going to have a hard time with the half back arch because my foot didn't fully touch the ground when I draped it over his thighs, but it actually worked fine because when I lifted him my foot reached the floor without any problem.

The half back arch with quad/hip flexor was my husband's favorite by far. I did notice that when I brought his leg out to 90 degrees his low back and glutes came up off the floor a considerable amount. Is that normal? He said that he felt comfortable and he really loved the stretch when I did the full move but I'm just not sure if it's common for people to get lift in their low back and glutes prior to the stretch.

I definitely need to practice the transitions. My husband had no idea I was changing sides but I just didn't feel smooth when I was doing it. 

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July 25, 2020 - 9:35 pm
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Yes, this is normal that the glutes and the lower back come off the floor, and the stiffer someone is, the more they will come up.

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July 31, 2020 - 5:34 am
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Module 15

This module was a little familiar for me because the abdominal work was very similar to what we learned in massage school. I have to say I don't do a lot of abdominal work in my sessions because most people don't feel comfortable getting it done and the draping is a pain, however I think doing it during a mat session when people have clothes on might be easier for people to open up to. 

The ribcage work is something I've never done before and I really liked doing the work. When I was pushing the rib cage left and right I could feel the whole thing shift back and forth and begin to have a little more movement after doing it a few times. My husband said he felt like that move along with the elephant walking really helped to get the ribcage more room for the diaphragm to expand and he could get deeper breaths.

The other move he really enjoyed was the elephant walking on the shoulders. Because he drives all day, he really appreciated the opening of the chest it created for him. 

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July 31, 2020 - 7:05 pm
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In my experience people are much less resistant to abdominal work when they have their clothes on. For many it's a new experience and can be quite enjoyable. Try it and let me know what kind of feedback you are getting - I am curious.

I always did a little abdominal work in my sessions without even asking the clients, and nobody ever complained about it. If I feel that someone needs more extensive abdominal work, I ask them. But for a couple of minutes of belly rocking I never ask.

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August 1, 2020 - 1:48 am
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Module 16

I definitely had to practice the one side shoulder moves a few times before I felt comfortable doing it. Getting my leg positioned right while doing the circling and without feeling tension in my upper and mid back took some practice but I think I got the hang of it now. I realized I was sitting back just a little too far for what felt good for me. It wasn't even a big adjustment but just a little shift up and I could get a better grip without all the stress on my back. 

I was a little scared at first when I was doing the triangle shoulder stretch because it looks like it would hurt or be really uncomfortable. I definitely see how it can be very easy to push a client past their limit without much effort on the part of the therapist. I like it much more with the tricep massage while pressing because it took my husbands mind away from the little bit of discomfort he was feeling from the stretch. He really liked the  arm swinging after because he said he felt like it "shook out" his arm after the triangle stretch. 

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August 1, 2020 - 1:51 am
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Shama Kern said
In my experience people are much less resistant to abdominal work when they have their clothes on. For many it's a new experience and can be quite enjoyable. Try it and let me know what kind of feedback you are getting - I am curious.

I always did a little abdominal work in my sessions without even asking the clients, and nobody ever complained about it. If I feel that someone needs more extensive abdominal work, I ask them. But for a couple of minutes of belly rocking I never ask.

  

I just reopened my practice last weekend so even though I don't have my mat set up in my practice yet (I rent space in a chiropractors office right now and it's a little less than 100 sq. ft. so definitely not enough space for a table and a mat) there are quite a few things I can add into my table sessions until I find a new office. Abdominal work is definitely one of those things because I can just work over the sheets. I will be sure to let you know how it goes 😁

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August 1, 2020 - 12:40 pm
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I guess you know that we have a small course which focuses only on abdominal work which goes deeper than the techniques in the Complete Thai Massage course. 

I think it is easier to work on the abdomen when clients have a t-shirt on than working through a sheet. The sheet doesn't let you see much. That wouldn't work if you do the abdominal work as part of an oil massage session. It would work if it is a Thai Massage session or a dedicated abdominal session. What do you think?

The Thai abdominal work can be totally done on a table just as well as on the floor, unlike many Thai Massage techniques. That makes it very versatile.

Yes, please keep me updated how it is going. Smile

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Nicole Gordon
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August 3, 2020 - 9:01 pm
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Module 17

 

I've been incorporating these techniques into my table sessions over the past few days and clients have been really loving them. I've always just done a few quick hand and arm techniques and these are nice additions to add some length to that part of the session. A few of my clients have been complaining of hand issues due to working at home because of Covid. They have said that their hands feel "lighter" and "like they can breath" after I did the techniques in this module. I've been spending a little extra time in the forearms as well. I feel that working the sen lines ties the arm together a little more than how I usually work because I usually work them as separate areas. I also feel that these technique have a different energy to them because it's the opposite of how I usually work. I usually start with the hand and work up the arm towards the shoulder, and with these techniques I work from the arm down. I feel like it just has a nicer flow from an energy standpoint. 

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August 3, 2020 - 11:18 pm
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Arm and hand work feels so good. I have always found that massage on the extremities - feet, hands, and head/face - feels especially great. That's why I felt inspired to create separate specialized courses for all these three areas to give people even more tools to work on these areas in the most effective way.

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