What is Traditional Thai Massage?
In Thailand, Thai massage is known as "nuad phaen boran" (literally "ancient-style massage"). Traditional Thai massage can trace its roots back to the time of the Buddha, more than 2500 years ago in India. Today, it is still one of the most powerful alternative practices in the field of alternative medicine and holistic health.
The massage recipient changes into loose, comfortable clothes and lies on a firm mattress on an elevated table. The receiver may be positioned in a variety of yoga-like positions during the course of the massage, but deep static and rhythmic pressures form the core of the massage.
The massage practitioner leans on the recipient's body using hands and usually straight forearms locked at the elbow to apply firm rhythmic pressure. The massage generally follows designated lines (Sen) in the body. Legs and feet of the giver can be used to fixate the body or limbs of the recipient. In other positions, hands fixate the body, while the feet do the massaging action. A full Thai massage includes rhythmic pressing and stretching of the entire body; this may include pulling fingers, toes, ears, cracking the knuckles, walking on the recipient's back, and manipulating the recipients body into many different positions. There is a standard procedure and rhythm to the massage, which the practitioner will adjust to fit each individual client.