Thai massage at Knotty Yoga
The name is misleading because Thai massage originated in India 2,500 years ago under the same lineage before migrating to Thailand. It is frequently called Thai Yoga Massage. The massage part of Thai massage is somewhat misleading as well because it bears little to no resemblance to what we normally think of as massage.
Thai massage is done on a thick mat on the ground, fully clothed, and without oil. Unlike conventional massage which is mostly done face down (prone), Thai massage is done face down, face up, on the side, seated, and in a number of other hybrid positions. Limbs are also moved around substantially and the body is twisted and manipulated to find tension patterns and release them.
Because the recipient is on the ground, the therapist has most of their body weight at or above the height of the person and has a tremendous amount more leverage than in table based massage. They are also free to use their feet, knees, and elbows in addition to conventional massage that focuses almost exclusively on the hands. Because of this, Thai massage is far less physiologically taxing on the therapist and far less likely to cause injury.
Because the client has their clothes on, far greater ranges of motion can be done without worrying about draping. People who are modest and somewhat embarrassed at the notion of a regular massage have no such qualms about receiving a Thai massage. Thai massage can also be done anywhere. Whereas a person finishes a conventional massage oily and sluggish, they end a Thai massage energized.
For yoga instructors, personal trainers, and group fitness instructors, key Thai massage moves can easily be done on clients or taught in classes. For couples, a set of Thai massage moves can be learned to help your partner stretch, ease back pain, reduce tension, and learn how to touch each other in a healing way. For massage practitioners, Thai massage can be a way of saving wear and tear on your body, extending your massage career, and offering your clients something different. Elements of Thai massage can also be easily incorporated into a table massage so it isn’t an exclusive choice.