Thai Healing Massage Academy | Thai Massage Online Courses

Learn Thai Massage

ONLINE

Convenient - Effective

Professional Training since 2001

Avatar

Please consider registering
Guest

Search

— Forum Scope —






— Match —





— Forum Options —





Minimum search word length is 3 characters - maximum search word length is 84 characters

Register Lost password?
sp_Feed sp_TopicIcon
Wendy Choponis Complete Thai Massage Course notes
Avatar
Wendy Choponis
Seymour, Iowa, USA
Member
Members
Forum Posts: 43
Member Since:
September 3, 2017
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
1
August 8, 2018 - 12:13 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print

Finally getting this started…

Module 1 Introduction 

Other than the Heavenly Head course, this course will be closest to an “energy” class that I’ve ever taken.  I hope it helps me to become more tuned in to the bodies of my clients.

Of the 8 body parts to use as tools I already use all of these because I have small hands and took classes at massage school to teach me tools and methods to save my hands and thumbs.  I do barefoot deep tissue on 95% of my clients wanting traditional massage so I”m especially comfortable using my feet. 

 Of the positions, although I’m 60 I feel comfortable using any of them.  The squatting is the most challenging but I figure I won’t be in that position very long or I’ll readjust and go to another technique or position.  Sitting on my heels and toes is uncomfortable if I do it very long so I’ll use those positions in short segments.   

My massage school emphasized good body mechanics, alignment, and using body weight instead of strength, so I’m already conscious of realizing that if I start feeling pain then I rethink and readjust what I’m doing. 

Avatar
Shama
Thailand
Admin
Forum Posts: 6719
Member Since:
June 28, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
2
August 8, 2018 - 12:47 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print

Hi Wendy, welcome back! I guess you are familiar with the process, but I always post a reference to our certification checklist at the beginning of each thread:

Certification Checklist

You are way ahead of the game since you are familiar with all the Thai Massage positions. And your massage school apparently did a better job than many by introducing good ergonomical principles. 

Avatar
Wendy Choponis
Seymour, Iowa, USA
Member
Members
Forum Posts: 43
Member Since:
September 3, 2017
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
3
August 8, 2018 - 3:29 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print

My massage instructors absolutely stressed good body ergonomics.  It took me awhile to figure out how to start a new forum thread for my complete thai massage class but I obviously got it done.  I was trying to find my Heavenly Head thread that I completed last October.  I did a search and couldn’t access it.  

Avatar
Shama
Thailand
Admin
Forum Posts: 6719
Member Since:
June 28, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
4
August 8, 2018 - 10:12 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print

I just typed “Wendy” into the search box and your HHM thread popped right up, in the second position right after this thread.

Avatar
Wendy Choponis
Seymour, Iowa, USA
Member
Members
Forum Posts: 43
Member Since:
September 3, 2017
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
5
August 8, 2018 - 11:06 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print

Okay, I did that.  What threw me was the sorry message that was under it.  But if I clicked on my title, it opened up just fine.  Thanks

 

SUPINE

Module 2:  Chi Machine

I LOVE love love doing the chi machine move.  It wasn’t called this but I learned it in a pulsing, rebalancing class and it’s already been part of my sequence to finish table massages to get energy back down to the feet before a client gets up.  Several of my clients have commented that they like that part.

So when I saw this as part of the Thai Massage, I was very pleased.  With the Thai Massage starting in the supine position and on the floor, it makes sense to start with the chi machine to get a person relaxed and get energy moving.  They definitely quiet down and realize that the massage is starting.  It’s actually easier to do it holding the heel in the cup of your hand resting on the thighs than holding the heels in the air when they’re lying on a massage table.  I hadn’t thought about finishing it slowly before but that makes total sense.  It’s such a wonderful technique!

Avatar
Shama
Thailand
Admin
Forum Posts: 6719
Member Since:
June 28, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
6
August 9, 2018 - 12:37 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print

And it starts the session off in a gentle and sweet way, letting the clients know that they can relax into it. The Chi Machine is actually not part of traditional Thai Massage training, but I have added it into my style, along with other unique elements like my many rocking elements. It is possible to enrich and improve the traditional system of Thai Massage.

Avatar
Wendy Choponis
Seymour, Iowa, USA
Member
Members
Forum Posts: 43
Member Since:
September 3, 2017
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
7
August 9, 2018 - 11:20 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print

I agree.  The Pulsing and Rebalancing class that I mentioned taught a lot of rocking techniques (Trager method), and I use those a LOT in massages of any type.  

Module 3:  Foot Massage 1

I have small hands so I found out that on the large, stiff feet of my husband (athletic and muscular) it was more difficult to use these techniques in a smooth way.  He commented that it shows that he needs his feet stretched more.  He likes the bend-inward move because he feels it stretching his shin.  I have to be careful though because he’s had surgery on both knees and he felt twinges in one knee when I did this stretch. I backed off and slowed down with the stretch.  

These techniques were much easier to do on the others that I’ve practiced them on.  I still have trouble with the foot twists no matter how flexible a person’s foot is,  and I know I’m doing it correctly.  Maybe I’m expecting too much movement from the foot. 

Really like doing the foot lift and shake at the end of the video!  I bet it feels amazing.  

Avatar
Shama
Thailand
Admin
Forum Posts: 6719
Member Since:
June 28, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
8
August 10, 2018 - 12:16 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print

If you have small hands and someone has large stiff feet, then some of the foot techniques are much harder to do. There are alternatives, like working the feet with forearms, elbows, knees and feet to compensate for the size difference. I show much more about working the feet in the Thai Foot Massage course, which is a whole separate modality, and another large course.  But the material in the Complete Thai Massage course is plenty enough for most cases, and as a starting element for a Thai Massage session.

Avatar
Wendy Choponis
Seymour, Iowa, USA
Member
Members
Forum Posts: 43
Member Since:
September 3, 2017
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
9
August 10, 2018 - 8:46 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print

Shama said
If you have small hands and someone has large stiff feet, then some of the foot techniques are much harder to do. There are alternatives, like working the feet with forearms, elbows, knees and feet to compensate for the size difference. I show much more about working the feet in the Thai Foot Massage course, which is a whole separate modality, and another large course.  But the material in the Complete Thai Massage course is plenty enough for most cases, and as a starting element for a Thai Massage session.  

Good to know.  I’ve been considering taking your Thai foot class.  I took a Thai foot reflexology class at massage school that uses a small stick to work all the points well.  I use that treatment as a reward session for repeat customers. I think more of your techniques would really enhance it.

Module 4: Foot Massage 2

I appreciate this video helping me to realize the 8 ways to work on feet based on the ways a foot can move.  Interesting. 

Again, these are easier to do on smaller more limber feet than my husband’s big stiff feet. 

It was awkward following the steps in this video because at times I’d be working on both feet together and at times only one foot at a time.  But I realize I wont do every move shown  every time and I’ll have to develop my own smooth progression….maybe working from one foot to leg before doing the other one. 

I know these techniques feel amazing so I’m thinking of incorporating some of them into my massage on the table.  I know I’ll have to adapt my positioning to get the proper leverage and use my body weight.

Avatar
Shama
Thailand
Admin
Forum Posts: 6719
Member Since:
June 28, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
10
August 11, 2018 - 12:49 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print

You generally get better ergonomics on the floor, but you can still do most of the foot techniques on a table. And if you incorporate them into a table massage, then of course that’s the way to go.

I hope you get to practice on other people besides your husband, so that you know how it feels on smaller and more flexible feet.

Avatar
Wendy Choponis
Seymour, Iowa, USA
Member
Members
Forum Posts: 43
Member Since:
September 3, 2017
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
11
August 12, 2018 - 1:27 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_EditHistory

Oh, yes, I’m practicing on other bodies other than my husband’s.  I like to try each new video’s techniques on him before I try them on anyone else.  Once I’ve practiced them on him, the techniques are usually easier on the others.  My female clients and family members that I’m practicing on are very excited that I’m learning this new modality.  My one niece posted on facebook that it is her new favorite massage that I do.  

Module 5:  Leg warm up

On my husband’s big muscular leg, the butterly compressions hurt my wrists but they didn’t bother me as much when I tried them on my “softer” ladies.  I’d probably rather use my forearms when doing compressions on muscles such as his.  I also found out that using the heel of my hand to roll the muscle worked easier than using my thumbs.  There’s many techniques to warm the leg muscles so I doubt if I’ll use the thumb rolling much at all unless it’s a small client.  Squeezing the calves with my hands felt okay and is a fun technique.

Avatar
Shama
Thailand
Admin
Forum Posts: 6719
Member Since:
June 28, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
12
August 13, 2018 - 8:09 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print

That’s a great facebook post. It shows that you must be doing a good job with it!

When working on big muscular legs it is better and easier to use your forearm, or even knees and feet. You will get to that soon in the course. Never stress your thumbs and wrists, as this can endanger your career.

Avatar
Wendy Choponis
Seymour, Iowa, USA
Member
Members
Forum Posts: 43
Member Since:
September 3, 2017
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
13
August 16, 2018 - 11:24 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print

Yes, it’s a good thing that most of my clients aren’t built like him!  In massage school I chose elective classes that taught me tools and techniques to save my hands and wrists no matter what kind of body I treated.  

Module 6:  Leg Warmup with forearms

I love all of the techniques in this video.  Although it can feel awkward getting into position for them until I’ve practiced them more, they are easier and more fun to do than those in the last video.  I really like the angle of working on the inside of the thigh with the leg angled over my leg.  This positioning with both bodies rather intwined can’t help but build a sense of trust between therapist and client.  I like the rocking of the leg once the positioning is established as a way of getting both of us relaxed.  

When I first tried the presses on my husband I had him give feedback on my sinking in with body weight versus pressing in with my strength.  He responded that the latter technique felt more harsh and invasive.  I got the same type of response from others I practiced on.  

I especially like the technique of laying the forearm in the groove between the hamstrings and adductors.  Most people have soreness in their adductors so I like how this positioning allows me to slowly sink into them from a different angle.   Most techniques I’ve seen before basically just had the arm (or foot) slowly stroking between knee and medial upper leg to relax the adductors.  This entwined postioning also allows a more direct angle for that last press on the adductors with the forearm.

I understand how these forearm techniques can address the sen lines more at once instead of having to address them individually on each side of the leg.

Also like the stretch on the calf while twisting the foot the other way and have used that some in my table massages when I can get a good angle. The elephant walking is a fun technique, too.  

Avatar
Shama
Thailand
Admin
Forum Posts: 6719
Member Since:
June 28, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
14
August 17, 2018 - 12:28 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print

Yes, pressure versus leaning with body weight, the pressure method loses every single time. 
I am sure that this module is right up your alley since it is perfect for saving your hands. And the getting into the position will feel easy and natural to you after a while.

I have seen plenty of massage therapists burn out their hands. I wanted to make sure that this will never happen to anyone with my training.

Avatar
Wendy Choponis
Seymour, Iowa, USA
Member
Members
Forum Posts: 43
Member Since:
September 3, 2017
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
15
August 18, 2018 - 5:04 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print

Module 7:  Hip evaluation-leg stretches 1

They covered it at massage school but I’ve never been very good at looking at posture and figuring out which muscle(s) may have a problem.  So it’s good to know more about looking at how the feet point to assess if there’s hip tightness.  Funny, Rich’s feet pointed just like your description, so I worked his right hip using the rocking motion.  It made him feel looser, for sure.  

I really love the feet walking on the hamstrings technique, and everyone I’ve done this on have really loved it.

Never have stretched the quadriceps in this manner, but I really like using that technique and everyone enjoys that, too.  It’s easier to do on a heavier person because they don’t move as much.  My lighter clients tend to slide toward me a lot even though I’m bracing their leg with mine.  

Rich wants me to use the techniques in this video to stretch him out for officiating.  

Avatar
Shama
Thailand
Admin
Forum Posts: 6719
Member Since:
June 28, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
16
August 18, 2018 - 2:30 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print

Sounds like you are finding a bunch of new and useful stuff in the material. It sure helps when people like and appreciate what we are doing, right? Smile

Avatar
Wendy Choponis
Seymour, Iowa, USA
Member
Members
Forum Posts: 43
Member Since:
September 3, 2017
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
17
August 18, 2018 - 10:19 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print

Absolutely.

Module 8:  Leg stretches 2- knee and calf work; Intro to “hip pie”

I appreciate you mentioning how this is a modular system so a therapist doesn’t have to do every technique in exactly the same sequence as shown on the videos.  I’ve traded massages with someone who went to a massage school where students had to do exactly as the instructor, replicate a certain number of strokes, and not deviate from the sequence.  I’m glad my schooling allows me to develop my own style.  I prefer being flexible according to the client.  Plus I wouldn’t be able to remember all of your steps anyway.  

I really like this video also.  The “hip pie” concept makes a lot of sense in working on the legs and hips.  Thinking of the hips like a pie makes it easier to remember the different angles to stretch the legs and hips.  So instead of worrying about a sequence I can just think about the angles and get those stretches in. 

I really like the 3 ways to work on the calf muscle and the wiggle move on the knee.  More easy and fun moves that are effective and feel great.

It’s nice to learn circling and gentle rocking techniques that can help get someone into a stretch instead of just pushing them into it. I’ve heard yoga instructors tell people NOT to pulse into a stretch to avoid tearing muscle tissue but a gentle passive stretch facilitated by a therapist is safer.

Because of our size differential as you described, I practiced that last move on Rich using my shoulder and weight to press his knee down.  That was a powerful stretch for him and he really liked it.  

Avatar
Shama
Thailand
Admin
Forum Posts: 6719
Member Since:
June 28, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
18
August 18, 2018 - 10:37 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print

I refer to those people who are married to their massage sequence as ‘massage mechanics”, and I try really hard to make sure that my students are not locked into this concept and become creative healing artists instead. Unfortunately Thai Massage is mostly taught in this regimented way.

Avatar
Wendy Choponis
Seymour, Iowa, USA
Member
Members
Forum Posts: 43
Member Since:
September 3, 2017
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
19
August 19, 2018 - 9:13 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print

Module 9:  Leg Stretches 3; more hip pie

More excellent stretches on the leg using hip pie angles.

It is amazing how a little bouncing motion can instantly get a person to relax a body part when they have trouble surrendering engagement of a muscle.  I run into this a lot when working on arms and the neck.

I love doing the 90 and 135 degree stretches with the client’s foot against my body.  It makes it so easy to use the body to get those stretches.  You’re right, not everyone can handle the 135 degree stretch very far. 

I’ve struggled before giving the 180 degree stretch on clients of various sizes so I’m glad to learn the ankle-on-my-shoulder technique and the kneeled straight-arm technique.  

That last stretch is fun and is such a great spinal twist.  My models always love that one.   

Avatar
Wendy Choponis
Seymour, Iowa, USA
Member
Members
Forum Posts: 43
Member Since:
September 3, 2017
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
20
August 23, 2018 - 6:28 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print

Model 10:  Leg Stretches 4; Blood Stop

This video has some really intense stretches.

I’m good with combining softness of touch, breath, and body posture with the technical aspect of thai massage, but I have to admit that thinking about the “hara” while I’m working is hard for me to get used to.  I have to remind myself to pay attention to it.  When I’m more comfortable flowing throught the techniques without having to think about what’s next I think I’ll be able to get tuned in to the energy aspect of this.

The spinal twist techniques used on taller clients worked well on Rich though it seemed awkward at first to block the leg with my leg like that.  

Only a couple of my models where able to allow me to do much of the 270 stretch but that’s a really nice stretch.  The straight leg to the side is a really intense stretch but I have trouble walking my toes and activating the stretch by angling my foot.  I’m sure I’ll get smoother at it with more practice. 

I need to keep trying the blood stop whenever I get a chance.  I think I lack the confidence in what I’m doing  and tend to stop too soon before my models experience any sensations.  

Forum Timezone: Asia/Bangkok

Most Users Ever Online: 81

Currently Online:
19 Guest(s)

Currently Browsing this Page:
1 Guest(s)

Top Posters:

mwisdom: 186

DKThai: 174

Karin Secrest: 96

Cindy Gogan: 86

Kathy McChesney: 84

jurasan: 82

Newest Members:

ieltsglobal4

Kah Soon Ng

Jenni O'Brien

Tharuka Ekanayake

Jessica Buttari

moda

Forum Stats:

Groups: 1

Forums: 7

Topics: 1069

Posts: 16164

 

Member Stats:

Guest Posters: 5

Members: 770

Moderators: 0

Admins: 1

Administrators: Shama