Thai Massage and yoga are part of the same family. About 2500 years back Thai massage was introduced in Thailand by an Indian physician, a contemporary of Buddha. He brought with him his knowledge of yoga and yoga therapy. Therefore the term Thai Yoga Massage is quite appropriate, although this term is not used at all in Thailand but only by western practitioners.
First, yoga did not allow it to be in Thailand. There exists even a kind of Thai yoga in Thailand, but it is not widely known and hardly practiced by anyone. And so the Thai Massage arrived together with the yoga, nevertheless the Massage Koh Samui flourished and also the yoga disappeared into oblivion. Nowadays you can find quite a lot of yoga schools in Thailand’s tourist areas, but almost all are run by foreigners for foreign students. Only in recent years possess the Thais started to take an interest in the Indian version of yoga, and now additionally, there are yoga schools for Thais.
Why don’t the foreigners and Thais mix in the schools, you may ask? One reason is the language barrier, as well as the other reason would be that the Thais approach yoga as well as life generally in a more relaxed, easy going way, whereas westerners place their yoga practice very seriously. The Thais feel that western yoga classes are more competitive rather than relaxed, social events.
Who popularized Thai massage recently? For thousands of years massage and herbal medicine were standard and effective treatments in Thailand until modern medicine appeared on the scene. At that time Thai bodywork became less popular. It was resurrected by foreigners who had been fascinated with this unique healing art. They began to write books about it, they produced videos, and started schools.
The decoupling of Thai Yoga Massage from yoga had triggered a degeneration of the quality of this healing art. Originally it was practiced by monks in temples. In recent decades many times, it became a thinly disguised come-on for sexual services. However concurrently western therapists began to take it very seriously as being a therapeutic massage. They reintroduced yoga principles, and made a huge demand by westerners for Thai massage education and treatments in Thailand. There are countless massage schools in Thailand, just about all catering exclusively to foreigners.
The Thai government has become building a serious effort to increase the conventional of massage education by setting up training facilities for Thais, licensing therapists and schools, issuing official certificates, and promoting higher standards.
Thai Massage and yoga – the perfect combination. In its basic form, Thai massage is just a sequence of stretches and pressure points, a mechanical bodywork system. But with the help of yoga principles for the massage, it ehitye be elevated to some true healing art. Mindfulness, awareness of one’s own body and also the client’s body, working from one’s “hara”, the energetic center right behind the navel, awareness of one’s breath, conscious channeling of healing energy, plus an increased sensitivity of touch all greatly raise the quality and effectiveness from the treatment.
Thai massage may be much over a technique. The mixture of yoga principles with Thai bodywork is not merely an excellent combination, however it brings Thai massage returning to its roots of yoga. After all, they may be area of the same family.