Traditional Thai massage is a therapy that promotes the flow of energy throughout the body. The body regains flexibility and ease of movement, and the quiet meditative atmosphere gently promotes a calm alertness. Tension and toxic material is released from the joints, muscles and connective tissue. The movements also help to adjust the skeletal structure, relieve muscular and joint tension, and stimulate the internal organs.
Traditional Thai massage helps a person’s muscles, joints, ligaments and fascia by relaxing muscle tension, relieving the spasm, and improving the range of motion. The combination of pressure on specific points and yoga like stretches in traditional Thai massage relieves areas of muscular stress and tension. In fact, recipients often report that their muscles stay loose days after a session.
Additionally, traditional Thai massage helps a person’s cardiovascular system by dilating the blood vessels, so the circulation is increased. Traditional Thai massage stretches work in a similar way to regular yoga poses. As participants hold a pose, blood slows to targeted areas. When the practitioner releases the pose on a recipient, fresh circulation rushes back into the area. According to Yoga Journal, inverted poses can help with lymphatic drainage, the return of blood to the heart and digestion.
Thai massage works on the energy points relieves blockages and imbalances in the energy lines. When energy flows and is in balalance, well-being is restored. The combination of pressing and stretching promotes the flow of energy, helping to maintain health and preserve youthfullness. Freedom from Stiffness, chronic pain, as well as emotional release are common results.
The massage practitioner leans on the recipient's body using hands and usually straight forearms locked at the elbow to apply firm rhythmic pressure. The massage generally follows the Sen lines on the body—somewhat analogous to meridians or channels and Indian nadis. Legs and feet of the giver can be used to fixate the body or limbs of the recipient. In other positions, hands fixate the body, while the feet do the massaging action. A full Thai massage session typically lasts two hours or more, and includes rhythmic pressing and stretching of the entire body; this may include pulling fingers, toes, ears, cracking the knuckles, walking on the recipient's back, and arching the recipient into bhujangasana (or cobra position). There is a standard procedure and rhythm to the massage, which the practitioner will adjust to fit each individual client.