What is Thai massage?
Thai massage, or “yoga massage” – a holistic healing system, including a variety of methods of influence, such as deep pressure on muscle tissue, passive exercises, reminiscent of yoga poses, reflexology, stretching, opening joints, activating the flow of energy in the human body, acupressure. The roots of Thai massage lie in Ayurveda, the ancient Indian healing system, and in Chinese medicine, the oldest in the world. The history of Thai massage dates back about 2500 years, and today, like centuries ago, it enjoys wide popularity in Thailand.
As in many other health systems of the East, the concept of restoring energy balance is used in Thai massage. According to the ideas of Thai healers, energy circulates in the human body through numerous energy channels “sen.” Chinese medicine uses a similar idea about the circulation of qi energy along the energy meridians, in Indian Ayurveda, the art of healthy living, talking about channels called nadi and movement of life-giving energy, prana. In all these systems, it is believed that the underlying cause of all physical and mental illnesses are disturbances that occur in the channels during energy circulation. With the elimination of energy imbalance, the cause of the disease also disappears. Pressing on specific points lying on the projections of energy channels, and deep work with muscle tissue removes obstacles in the way of energy movement and activates its movement. Thanks to this, a full-fledged energy balance is restored, which means that all conditions are created for gaining health and well-being. Of the many channels that take place in the human body, 10 main ones are used in Thai massage.
The history of Thai massage
The history of traditional Thai massage is inextricably linked with the history of the Thai people themselves. During its history, Thailand experienced many cultural influences from its neighbors, and Thai medicine could not help but experience the effects of these rich cultures.
One of the events that determined the life of Siam (the ancient name of Thailand) was the spread of Buddhism, which penetrated there from India through the countries of Southeast Asia. It happened about 2500 years ago. Along with Buddhist monks, Ayurvedic practitioners from India also came from India, who brought yoga knowledge. The practice formed as a result of the merger of endemic Thai medicine and Ayurveda, and formed the basis of the modern Thai health system, which includes herbal and herbal medicine, traditional Thai massage, Thai yoga, aromatic saunas and the use of hot herbal compresses. Until now, Thai medicine has retained such exotic practices as “current sen” – hammering energy channels and foot massage with a wooden stick with a wooden stick (before which the masseur, holding the rope, dips the foot in a special herbal infusion and then warms them, touching hot metal sheet).
The Thai are considered the founder of the massage by an Indian doctor by the name of Jiva Kumar Bhikku, also known as Jiva Komarpadzh, or, as his affectionately called Thais themselves, “Doctor Shivaka”, “Doctor Father”. He is known as the friend and personal doctor of the Buddha. And today, every Thai masseur before the start of work reads a mantra dedicated to “Doctor-father.”