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Thai Massage

What Should I Know About It?

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Updated August 01, 2013

Thai Massage
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What is Thai Massage?

Thai massage is believed to have been developed by Jivaka Kumar Bhaccha, physician to Buddha, more than 2,500 years ago in India. It made its way to Thailand, where the Ayurvedic techniques and principles gradually became influenced by traditional Chinese medicine. For centuries, Thai massage was performed by monks as one component of Thai medicine.

What Does Thai Massage Feel Like?

Thai massage is more energizing and rigorous than more classic forms of massage. Thai massage is also called Thai yoga massage, because the therapist uses his or her hands, knees, legs, and feet to move you into a series of yoga-like stretches. Many people say Thai massage is like doing yoga without any work.

Muscle compression, joint mobilization, and acupressure are also used during treatment. People describe Thai massage as both relaxing and energizing.

What Should I Expect During My Visit?

Thai massage is usually done on a padded mat on the floor. No oil is applied, so you are fully dressed. You are usually asked to bring or wear comfortable clothing to the massage.

A typical Thai massage is 60 minutes to two hours long.

Many people find that Thai massage has the following benefits:

  • relaxes
  • reduces stress
  • improves circulation
  • increases energy
  • increases flexibility
  • improves range of motion
  • centers the mind and body

Precautions

Massage is not recommended for certain people:
  • infectious skin disease, rash, or open wounds

  • immediately after surgery

  • immediately after chemotherapy or radiation, unless recommended by your doctor

  • prone to blood clots. There is a risk of blood clots being dislodged. If you have heart disease, check with your doctor before having a massage

  • pregnant women should check with their doctor first if they are considering getting a massage. Massage in pregnant women should be done by massage therapists who are certified in pregnancy massage.

  • massage should not be done directly over bruises, inflamed skin, unhealed wounds, tumors, abdominal hernia, or areas of recent fractures.

Additional tips

  • Don’t eat a heavy meal before the massage.

  • If it's your first time at the clinic or spa, arrive at least 10 minutes early to complete the necessary forms. Otherwise, arrive 5 minutes early so you can have a few minutes to rest and relax before starting the massage.

  • Be sure that your massage therapist has your complete health history, because people with certain conditions should not have Thai massage.

  • If you feel discomfort at any time, let your massage therapist know.
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