What makes Thai Massage unique?
In this second video in the Thai Massage Love Affair series, we are focusing on another element that makes Thai Massage unique and sets it apart from most other massage systems: Therapeutic movement.
Actually ‘massage’ is not really the perfect description because it is a therapeutic healing modality that includes elements from massage, yoga, energy work, and acupressure.
Thai Massage versus other styles
Before I tell you what this factor is, we need a point of reference, so let’s do a comparison with Swedish massage which is the best-known style of massage in the Western world.
During a Swedish massage, you are lying on a massage table, face up or face down, and generally, you don’t move around much. The therapist works on your muscles and joints, and it is great for relaxation, circulation, and all kinds of other benefits.
Thai Massage adds an essential element
Thai Massage can do all the work on muscles and joints as well, with the same benefits, but it adds one important element, and that is MOVEMENT.
Not just a little, but a lot of movement. A Thai Massage therapist will move you all over the mat in many positions, lying face down, face up, on your side, or sitting up.
The importance of movement in Thai Massage therapy
Why is this such a big deal? Let’s look at this closely. The human body is designed for movement. What happens if you don’t move it enough? Not a pretty picture. It shrivels, it deteriorates, it falls apart, it gets sick.
Why do people do exercise, yoga, Pilates, running, or any kind of sport? Because all of those move their bodies. It gives you energy, it improves your health, and it gives you a natural high. Movement feels good. Most of us could use more of it, right?
That’s why it is so beneficial that Thai Massage incorporates a lot of movement into the sessions. Not just any movement, but sophisticated and effective stretches which come from India’s ancient yoga system.
At Thai Healing Massage Academy we have even incorporated another unique kind of movement into our training system, and that is rocking movements.
How your joints are ‘lubricated’ in Thai Massage therapy
Did you ever watch the old classic movie ‘The Wizard of OZ’? In one scene the hero Dorothy meets a tinman who could not move because all of his joints were rusted shut. Then Dorothy lubricates his joints with some oil, and he can move again. As a result, he is happy again.
That’s what Thai Massage does to your body. It’s like the oil that got the tinman moving again.
It feels terrible when your joints are all creaky, your range of motion gets less every year, you cannot touch your toes anymore, your muscles contract, your shoulders slump forward and your back is rounded.
The passive yoga element in Thai Massage
Thai Massage can counteract and improve all these issues through many kinds of movement, stretches, and rocking techniques. It helps to improve your flexibility, increase your range of motion, free up your joints, and get rid of those achy pains in your muscles.
Thai Massage is often called Thai Yoga Massage. It is like a yoga session that is done to you. Yoga is all about movement, and this is why movement is such an important and unique element of Thai Massage.
How physical movement can affect your mind
Would you like practical proof of how your physical movements affect not only your well-being but also your mind and emotions? Ok, just play along with me. Come on, no one can see you.
Here we go. Tighten your muscles, roll your shoulders forward, wrinkle your forehead, and collapse your back. Now try to feel happy. It is NOT possible!
Now roll your shoulders back, breathe in, open your chest, put a smile on your face, say ahhhhh, let your breath out, and now try to feel depressed. You cannot do it!
This is proof of how powerful certain kinds of movements are.
But movement is just one of many reasons why Thai Massage is so beneficial. If you want to find out what the other reasons are, sign up below this article for a totally free six-part Thai Massage online video series.
The author, Shama Kern, is the founder of Thai Healing Massage Academy. He has been practicing and teaching Thai Massage for over two decades, and he is the creator of 20 Thai Massage online training courses.