Thai Massage

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Thai Massage

Traditional Thai Massage

Thai Massage

Traditional Thai Massage, or Thai Yoga Massage, is one of the oldest arts in the world, practiced by over 2,500 years. It's an ancient healing system combining acupressure, Indian Ayurvedic principles, and assisted yoga postures. Though in Thai its formal name is Nuat Thai, which literally means simply Thai massage, according to the Traditional Thai Medical Professions Act, it is usually called Nuat Phaen Boran, i.e. "ancient-style massage", or Nuat Phaen Thai, i.e. "Thai-style massage". The art of this ancient massage is taught in few Buddhist temples through the country or is passed down orally from generation to generation. Open since 1955 on the grounds of Wat Po in Bangkok, Wat Po Thai Traditional Medical and Massage School is the original and oldest school of Thai massage in the country, and the first approved by the Thai Ministry of Education. Known throughout the world as Temple of the Reclining Buddha, Wat Po can also boast of being the first "open" University in Thailand.

During the renovation carried out at the end of the 19th century, King Rama III ordered the recovery of science lost and so were fixed to the inner walls of the temple 1,360 stone inscriptions divided into eight categories, which contained texts on the Buddhist teachings, the arts, the medicine and the traditional Thai massage. Wat Pho became, in fact, the first public university in Thailand, where people were free to read and learn from the stone inscriptions. Nowadays, Wat Pho offers four basic courses of Thai medicine: Thai massage, Thai midwife-nurse, Thai pharmacy, and Thai medical practice. A traditional massage practitioner is required to complete at least 800 hours training. The Ministry of Health's Department for Development of Thai Traditional and Alternative Medicine regulates Thai traditional massage venues and practitioners. As of 2016 the department says 913 traditional clinics have registered nationwide.
Practice - Traditional Thai Massage doesn’t include the use of oils or lotions. It is usually practiced on the ground, on mats or low mattresses, where the recipient and performer wearing comfortable clothing. There are two stiles of Thai massage: Rachasamnak, which is the oldest and most traditional form practiced and taught at Wat Pho in Bangkok, and Chaleeysak, which is a more popular style practiced and taught in Chiang Mai and in all northern Thailand. Chaleeysak style has five positions: supine, right side, left side, prone and sitting, while Rachasammak style doesn’t provide prone position. In both styles the therapist uses different part of his body like hands, thumbs and the remaining fingers, elbows, forearms, feet, heels and knees. Performers use various manipulations: compression, extension, torsion, stretching, shaking, tapping on your back with hand clasped, walking with the heels and the feet’s notch on the back massaged, raises the body while taking the massaged limb with hands. Some positions resemble those of Hatha Yoga like Ekapada Uttanapada Asana, Hala Asana, Karna Peeda Asana, Baddha Kona Asana, Asana Shalaba, Bhujanga Asana, Sukha Asana.
Mechanism of action and effects - Traditional Thai Massage acts on Sen, body’s lines or meridians, it facilitates the energy circulation’s movement within body and it is so powerful and deep that, even in most difficult cases, it has immediate results and great satisfaction. It gives relief to many of hardships that afflict people, like neck and back problems, water retention, poor circulation, swollen legs and tired. It has also calming effects, helps blood and lymph circulation, stimulates the bowel, loosens joints, helps to excess fluid elimination, improves posture and allows body and mind to relaxation. The energy channels concept, which runs through the body, is very common in a lot of Asian cultures, Sen in Thai, Nadi in Sanskrit, Jīngluò in Chinese and Tsobus in Japanese. More than 70,000 Sen are crossed by vital Prana; ten of these are the most important: Sumana, Ittha, Pingkala, Kalathari, Sahatsarangsi, Thawari, Lawasang, Ulangka, Nanthakrawat, Khitchanna. The Sen are invisible and not verified by scientific equipment; the Sen constitutes a second body, the Prana-Maya Kosha, in Sanskrit, is energetic body connected with physical body, Anna-Maya Kosha. The Indian medicine classifies all five bodies, in addition to two already mentioned, the Mana-Maya Kosha it is mental body, the Vijanana-Maya Kosha it is emotional body and the Ananda-Maya Kosha it is cosmic consciousness body. Thai massage works on Prana-Maya Kosha, second body and it has beneficial effects on the others; if the Prana doesn’t circulate properly in the Sen there are so much hardship in your body that can lead to disease states. The Thai massage’s primary purpose is to restore the proper energy flow in the Prana Sen.
History - Traditional Thai Massage has a history, but its history is also a legend. It was codified in fifth century B.C. by Shivago Kumar Baj, an Indian doctor, which is still recognized in Thailand as Medicine’s Father. Even today, before the massage begins, the therapist recites the prayer Wai Khru with hands clasped: Om Namo Shivago Kumar Baj Puchaya, which means: “I respect the compassionate Shivago Kumar Baj with good conduct”. Shivago Kumar Baj is mentioned in Pali Canon, the Theravada Buddhist sacred scripture, where he is reported as Buddha’s friend and follower. He practiced medicine’s art to the court of Indian King Bimbisara Maghada, and he was also medical of Buddhist community Sangha. Buddhist monks and doctor’s disciples arrived in Thailand in the third or second century b.C. and they spread this massage’s type. It is assumed that Shivago Kumar Baj has used the ancient medical traditions coming from India, Ayurveda and Yoga, but also from China, folk medicine and shamanic practices. A lot of terms used in Thai massage are very similar to Sanskrit language that testifies the influence of Indian medicine; and also many positions reflect typical yoga’s postures.
Massage parlours & Body Massage Centres - In addition to Traditional Massage, in Thailand are performed other massages, with or without essential oils. They have certainly relaxing effect if carried out in centres where there are qualified massage therapists, the diploma is normally exposed, but still have nothing to do with the Traditional Massage. Avoid massage on the beach if you can, they are normally abusive and frankly it is not advisable to entrust you back or neck to any qualified therapists. Body Massage is very famous in Bangkok or Pattaya. In these massagge centers young girls use their naked bodies to perform massage, usually with soapy water body on body. More than a massage it is an erotic stimulation. Hygiene is essential in these cases, so girls will take care to clean you and her before the massage. When the massage finish you can entertainment further, at your choice, with girls more than willing, remember to use safer sex practices.
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