The Thai Massage And Yoga Connection

Thai Massage and yoga are part of the same family. About 2500 타이마사지 years ago 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 very appropriate, although this term is not used at all in Thailand but only by western practitioners.

First, yoga did not make it in Thailand

There is even a form of Thai yoga in Thailand, but it is not widely known and hardly practiced by anyone. So the Thai Massage arrived along with the yoga, but the massage flourished and the yoga disappeared into oblivion. Nowadays there are quite a number of yoga schools in Thailand’s tourist areas, but almost all of them are run by foreigners for foreign students. Only in the last few years have the Thais started to take an interest in the Indian version of yoga, and now there are also yoga schools for Thais.

Why don’t the foreigners and Thais mix in the schools, you might ask? One reason is the language barrier, and the other reason is that the Thais approach yoga as well as life in general in a more relaxed, easy going way, whereas westerners take their yoga practice very seriously. The Thais feel that western yoga classes are more competitive instead of 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 were fascinated by 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 led to a degeneration of the quality of this healing art. Originally it had been practiced by monks in temples. In recent decades it often became a thinly disguised come-on for sexual services. However at the same time western therapists started to take it very seriously as a massage therapy. They reintroduced yoga principles, and created a huge demand by westerners for Thai massage education and treatments in Thailand. There are countless massage schools in Thailand, almost all catering exclusively to foreigners.

The Thai government has been making a serious effort to raise the standard 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 ideal combination

In its basic form, Thai massage is just a sequence of stretches and pressure points, a mechanical bodywork system. But by adding yoga principles to the massage, it can be elevated to a true healing art. Mindfulness, awareness of one’s own body and 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, and an increased sensitivity of touch all greatly increase the quality and effectiveness of the treatment.

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