Traditional Therapeutic Thai Massage in Thailand is called NUAD BORARN. The word
. The therm
Thai Yoga Massage
is used today mostly by western practitioners who learned, practice and respect the ancient art of Traditional Thai Massage. It is also used sometimes to distinguish the so called Northern Style, which uses more stretching,
techniques then the Southern Style, in witch there is more focus on deep acupressure. (More on styles
The reason why many practitioners today use the
Thai Yoga Massage
term is that they relate their
practice to the real tradition and its origins in Ayurveda, Yoga and Buddhism. They perceive the depth and purity of this long tradition in contrary to what is often heard about some places where Thai Massage is mixed with other type of services, giving it bad reputation.
As Asokananda (Harald Brust) profoundly explains in his book THAI TRADITIONAL MASSAGE FOR ADVANCED
In Thai Massage tradition, similarly to other oriental systems,
human is perceived and treated holistically. Important part
of theory and practice of Thai Massage takes the concept
of energy lines within human body called SEN. They are
invisible energy pathways similar to NADI channels in Yoga
and acupuncture meridians. There are 72 000 SEN in this
system but in practice 10 main ones are being used.
The technique of Thai Massage consists of slow and rhythmic
compression along energy lines, work on acu-points and
stretching, joint opening movements looking like assisted
yoga positions. One aspect of work in Thai Massage is similar
to what in western terminology should be called peripheral
stimulation, witch means that certain effect in some areas
of the body will be attained through stimulation of some
other, distant areas, as it takes place in therapies like
rolfing or Shiatsu. The other
aspect of stretching and joint opening movements makes similarity
with certain kinds of manual therapies such as
osteopathy, physiotherapy or chiropractics. As we can see
Thai Yoga Massage
doesn't really reflect what
is used to be understood as
in western world.
During the session the client remains fully clothed, laying on
a mat on the floor.
The practitioner uses their thumbs, palms, feet, elbows and knees to press, pull and stretch,
guiding the recipient into various assisted yoga postures, while remaining focused on their own body-
center. In areas of tension the pressure can be held for a longer time. This combination of slow,
rhythmic movements and focused awareness creates a sense of flowing dance around and with the
recipient's body. Sometimes it is called
yoga for lazy people
. It is good both for receiver as well
as for the giver. A good practitioner should be able to give very effective treatment effortlessly. In
fact it is yoga for both.
A huge leverage is being created by proper use of the practitioner's body weight. It can create
very strong and stable pressure on recipient, yet it feels safe and painless, although at times sort of
can be filed and usually is accepted and enjoyed by the recipient.
The sessions are tailored according to the individual needs and body condition of the client. The sort
of techniques and pressure strength might be soft medium or hard dependent on his or hers
sensitivity, flexibility, muscular tension and general health condition.
Full sessions last 1.5 - 2 or even 3 hours. One hour treatment is considered to be short. It is so
because, techniques of Thai massage are performed in slow pace and cover the whole body, from
feet to the head and face. Also, it take time to get one into a deep, relaxing state, where all the
tension melts. More on technique and anatomy