What happened with abdominal massage in Thailand?
Abdominal massage is an area that is often neglected in massage therapy.
I have been living in Thailand for over a decade, and massage is very popular in this country. After all, it has its own nationally sponsored and protected system of massage, called “Thai Massage.”
I have received countless massages here, but in almost every single case the therapist never even touched my abdomen.
When I originally studied Thai Massage back in the 1990s, we were taught a few abdominal techniques, but they were distinctly unpleasant and mostly quite painful, consisting of strong and sustained linear pressure with thumbs and hands. As a result practically no therapist in Thailand is using them. Fortunately there is an excellent alternative.
Abdominal massage in the western world
The “step child” status of abdominal massage is not only a phenomenon in Thailand. Once I received a session in the United States from a recent massage school graduate.
The massage was fine, but strangely the therapist never touched my abdomen or chest at all.
After the session I asked her why she had skipped my belly and chest. She explained that this had not been part of her massage training. How strange – why would you skip a major part of the body completely!
Interesting facts about abdominal massage:
- The abdomen is the physical center of the body
- The abdomen is the energetic center of the body, the seat of the “hara”
- The abdominal cavity contains the largest concentration of organs in the body
- The abdomen (hara) is the starting point of the energy lines in traditional Eastern medicine
- By working on the abdomen you affect the entire body
- Abdominal work has a direct effect on over half a dozen organs
- Many people store negative emotions in the belly area which can be released through abdominal massage
- Abdominal massage can have major beneficial effects on your health
Massage styles which focus on the abdomen
Chi Nei Tsang and Shiatsu are two systems which offer extensive education about abdominal massage. Both of these systems involve a lot of highly detailed and specific training about eastern medical models like Chinese and Japanese medical theory.
Learning them involves a significant investment of time and money. (I know that since I have studied both.) This is mostly beneficial for therapists who want to specialize in those particular modalities.
But what about those therapists who just want to learn some good abdominal work without spending months and thousands of dollars in training time and fees?
Abdominal Massage fills this need:
- It can be learned and applied quickly
- It can be easily combined with other massage modalities
- It can be learned without significant financial investment
- It gives therapists a practical method to work on the abdomen without needing to study a lot of medical theory
- It can be done even if the client is fully dressed like in Thai Massage
Application and Benefits
“Dancing Hands” Abdominal massage uses lots of rocking techniques. This type of motion makes it appear as if the hands were ‘dancing’ with the abdomen.
The rocking techniques are gentler on the receiver than direct pressure techniques, and also easier on the thumbs and wrists of the therapist.
It is a flexible system since it can be done on dressed or undressed clients, on the floor or on a massage table, with or without oil.
I originally developed this system as a complement to Thai Massage which lacks good abdominal work. However it can be used as a stand-alone massage modality by itself as well.
I have observed many wonderful benefits of this therapy from profound emotional releases to total relief of constipation to health improvements in many areas. The gentle rocking techniques activate energy flow in the body and stimulate its own natural healing response.
It is not only pain free but highly pleasant to experience since there is no strong pressure applied. The rocking gradually opens up deeper and deeper layers of the abdomen while softening the muscles and opening the energy channels. The effect on the receiver is similar to a meditative trance experience.
How can you learn abdominal massage?
You can learn this system through our online training course which includes full support by the instructor, access to our private facebook group, and our unconditional satisfaction guarantee.