Massage 101 (Thai massage)

Ernie Miller Nature Center
Ernie Miller Nature Center

The Thai massage I have been introduced to and instructed in is called Nuad Bo-Rarn Thai work.  The four primary components to this work are, compression, point work, sen or energy lines and stretching or yoga.  The advantage to this type of massage is that it can be done through clothing.  Although it can be modified to table work, it is usually done on a traditional Thai mat.

Starting with the feet, the practitioner will focus on beginning the massage.  Once the feet are completed, compression work is used to warm the muscle and prepare for the additional work.  Moving to the right side for a man or left for a woman, the inside of the leg is done and then point work is started.  Point work is specific areas that are held to work sen lines or energy lines.  The work is done slowly and with purpose.  Once completed on the first side, the practitioner moves to the opposite side of the body and again will use compression to begin the work and then finish again using compression and then move to the rest of the body, repeating each step, first compression then working the sen or energy lines.

Once the compression and energy work is done on the legs, the massage transitions to a series of stretches to help further the level of relaxation and beneficial work.  Moving to the upper body, many of the same steps are repeated and a variety of moves can be incorporated into the work.

Thai work can take at least two hours to complete, simply because of the pace, which is much slower than a Swedish or sports focused massage.  And though you may think that the work doesn’t sound like it would be all that relaxing, it really is.  Some clients mix things up and have a Thai massage every other month and others prefer to have a combination of both Swedish and Thai during a massage session.

Like any other massage or relaxation technique, Thai can be quite beneficial in improving flexibility, reducing stress and improving overall wellness.  Don’t hesitate to contact me to schedule an appointment and try a Thai massage.

Next topic:  Chinese Cupping

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