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Roger Drakes Complete Thai Massage course notes
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ROGER DRAKES
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June 25, 2015 - 6:49 pm
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Module 10

Cant wait to see the entire flow of leg stretches where everything comes together.I like your comments about softness of touch  and have been trying to implement it.Anatomy of a Thai move was very informative.

I worked on a slim flexible partner who used to practice yoga and was able execute a few power stretches but not all because they were too strong for my partner. After the session my partner remarked that they will resume with their yoga as it made them aware that they had lost some flexibility.

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Shama Kern
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June 25, 2015 - 11:46 pm
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That's an unexpected but very positive result of a Thai Massage session when it inspires someone to take better care of themselves.

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ROGER DRAKES
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June 27, 2015 - 10:39 pm
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Module 11

 I am flowing nicely but tend to forget some of the techniques(which you said would happen). Being attentive to my breathing lends itself to better energy flow and ease of movement. My partner nearly fell asleep near the end.

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Shama Kern
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June 28, 2015 - 2:04 pm
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Don't worry about forgetting some techniques. Your clients will never know what you are "supposed" to be doing anyway. Just keep watching the videos repeatedly, keep practicing, and after a while you won't forget anything anymore because it has become part of your self like riding a bicycle. Once you know it, you will never forget how to do it.

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ROGER DRAKES
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July 2, 2015 - 8:21 pm
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Module 12

These techniques gave me a way to gauge the balance of flexibility or lack thereof between  right and left sides of legs/hips.The loosening move at the end  is good also for warming up before launching in to the strong stretches.Your balance must be spot on for these stretches.Client enjoyed the stretches.

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July 2, 2015 - 10:54 pm
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Many positions in Thai Massage require good balance. Actually Thai Massage is very good for us as practitioners as well. It keeps us balanced and flexible.

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ROGER DRAKES
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July 6, 2015 - 12:35 am
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Module 13

Very good tips which I also use on my clients. I tried the new hip stretch on a client but she was too stiff but had practiced that stretch earlier because you did it on the leg routine module.This client needed a lot of rocking to loosen up the hip.The scooping and other massage techniques helped the situation somewhat.Need to practice the loose wrist technique some more.

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July 6, 2015 - 3:05 pm
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Just to reiterate what we discussed on the phone - whenever a client is so stiff that regular stretches are stressful, you should use more rocking techniques as substitutes for the straight stretches. When I say "rocking", this really includes rocking, circling, wiggling, shaking, or swinging moves. In other words introduce more motion into the technique. 

Some of this will be covered in later modules, and I also produced one course which focuses exclusively on these motion techniques.

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ROGER DRAKES
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July 8, 2015 - 2:16 am
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Module 14

I always wondered how you would move from one side to another because sometimes I found myself standing and walking around to the other side.The move you taught is an excellent and efficient way but an effort is required to maintain the rocking rhythm while transitioning.These stretching techniques surprisingly seemed very natural except for the back stretch which also engaged the quadriceps.My client who is very stiff enjoyed the rocking.

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July 8, 2015 - 2:32 am
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Actually it's not an effort which is required to maintain the rocking rhythm. It may seem so in the beginning, just like learning to drive a stick shift where you have to coordinate different actions to get it to shift smoothly. But once you are good at this transition, it will feel like a dance to you, quite effortless. It feels like you are a real healing artist who can move effortlessly. 

I know this doesn't happen in the beginning. I just wanted to make sure that you don't think that this transitioning move will always feel like an effort. Smile

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ROGER DRAKES
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July 10, 2015 - 7:22 pm
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Module 15

I agree that the abdominal area is often neglected and am glad you taught me how to work that seat of the hara. It really allows you to connect with your client.

I felt rumblings in that area like gas which I figure is digestive issues.Could it be more? In the pass I did a more agressive massage of the diaphragm but find that your style is more comforting. The pushing of the ribs is new to me and to my partner which is good as it would help me stand out of the crowd.Smile

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Shama Kern
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July 10, 2015 - 9:17 pm
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Here in Thailand the traditional abdominal techniques are quite aggressive and they feel terrible. That's why hardly any therapist ever uses them. I totally changed my approach to abdominal work. I got my inspiration from Chi Nei Tsang, but I toned even those techniques down quite a bit.

Now I can put any client into a trance with my abdominal work which is a lot nicer than seeing faces that are contorted with pain Frown. And I believe that my soft approach is more effective since the body doesn't guard against it like in the aggressive approach.

It is totally normal to hear all kinds of noises when you work on the abdomen. After all you are stirring things up there quite a bit, and it is all full of liquid matter. 

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ROGER DRAKES
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July 14, 2015 - 3:34 am
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Module 16

Happy to report that I am transitioning from one side to the other much easier . I still get some discomfort sitting on my right heel but when done on a bed its fine.

My client enjoyed the shoulder work especially the circling of the upper trapezius.The row boat feels very good to execute ;in fact this module is very enjoyable.One of the benefits of this course is that I am becoming more flexible.

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July 14, 2015 - 9:51 pm
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This is indeed a positive side effect of Thai Massage - it's good for the therapist as well. Smile

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ROGER DRAKES
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July 16, 2015 - 7:20 am
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Module 17

I performed the hand massage on a client with fibromyalgia and restless leg syndrome and was so very soothing and relaxing that it along with some Reiki arrested the shaking of her leg.

I like this technique because it does not require the use of oil although the massaging involves skin contact and is just as effective without lotion or oil.

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Shama Kern
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July 17, 2015 - 12:03 am
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I like to hear your real time client success stories. Unlike most course students, you seem to use the material on actual clients right away. It seems to be working for you.

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ROGER DRAKES
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July 19, 2015 - 6:22 am
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Module 18

Yes,I am a confident therapist and if the technique looks manageable , will try it on a client if needed.

I first practiced this module on an imaginary client because of an ongoing challenge of sitting comfortably on my right heel and during the session a "pleasant crack" occurred in my right knee and- behold! sitting on my right heel was more comfortable; felt a little sore on the medial side of the knee during the night though. Today its fine and the flexibility in the knee has improved.Is that normal?Should I do a daily exercise of just sitting on my heels ?

I then tried it on a real client and transitioning was not so bad. I think I was anticipating discomfort whenever sitting on the right heel was required.My client said it felt good in the shoulders.

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July 19, 2015 - 6:48 pm
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Now you are asking me some tricky stuff - diagnosing your cracking knee over the internet from halfway around the world! Laugh

A daily practice of sitting on your heels is definitely the best way to get your body used to it. Many students had issues with this initially, but so far they all got used to it and their bodies adjusted. It's just one of those positions that western bodies are not used to whereas the Asians have no problems with it at all. 

Regarding cracking - sometimes cracking can be releasing and a good thing. But there is also "bad" cracking, like some people have a lot of cracking and crunching in their ankle joints. In those cases you have to be very careful with traction/compression moves of the ankle.

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July 21, 2015 - 2:57 am
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Module 19

Nice flowing routine.I found this one easier to remember than the first routine.Partner enjoyed it.Transitioning still not smooth enough.

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ROGER DRAKES
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July 24, 2015 - 7:42 am
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Module 20

I like the ingenious use of the pillows to simulate a face cradle.Nice warm up. No problems. If there is burning around the achilles  tendon when warming up, what does that indicate?

Is there any special way of the client to move from supine to prone position. Do you assist them or do you just ask them to please turn over?

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