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Benefits of Thai Massage
Massage of all types is often used to relieve stress and protect against stress-related health issues. It is also said to boost energy and improve range of motion and flexibility. Thai massage, in particular, is said to benefit many different health problems.
Specifically, it may:
• Relieve tension headaches
• Reduce types of back pain (typically subacute and chronic nonspecific back pain)
• Relieve muscle pain and spasticity as well as joint stiffness and pain
• Increase flexibility and range of motion
• Stimulate circulation and lymphatic drainage
• Boost energy
• Calm the nervous system
If you've been searching for a change from your traditional types of massage, or you are particularly stiff or sore due to exercise or arthritis, Thai massage may be just what you're looking for.
Instead of the relaxing gliding and kneading motions characteristic of more popular forms of massage, Thai massage employs stretching, pulling, and rocking techniques to relieve tension and enhance flexibility and range of motion. It is sometimes called the "lazy person's yoga." The therapist uses his or her hands, knees, legs, and feet to move you into a series of yoga-like stretches and also applies deep muscle compression, joint mobilization, and acupressure.
Thai massage also utilizes energy work, which, according to ancient Asian culture, treats the subtle energetic field within the body. It corrects blockages, deficiencies, and imbalances in the flow of this energy, which then is believed to improve the client's health.
A professional massage facility should ask you about your health history before the massage. Thai massage may not be safe for someone with health conditions such as disk herniation, osteoporosis, recent surgery, or cardiovascular disease.
If you're considering trying Thai massage, it's a good idea to check with your health care provider before getting treatment to discuss whether it's appropriate for you.
Pregnant women should check with their doctor first before getting a massage. If he or she says that it is okay, ask for a recommendation for a licensed massage therapist who is certified in pregnancy massage.
Massage shouldn't be done over bruises, inflamed or weak skin, unhealed or open wounds, skin rash, tumors, abdominal hernia, or recent fractures.
Things You Should Know...
Usually performed on a padded mat on the floor, Traditional Thai Massage is now more commonly performed on a custom massage table to enhance comfort. Clothing is optional and depends on whether oil is introduced to the massage, in most cases clients will be asked to strip down to underwear. If a client is not wearing underwear then relax, most facilities provide robes or towels for the purpose.
Applying pressure to tender muscle knots and tight muscles can hurt, but there is a difference between that type of discomfort and pain due to excessive or inappropriate pressure and stretching.
While it may be difficult to avoid some discomfort when targeting muscle knots, a qualified, licensed massage therapist should be able to adjust the massage pressure and movements so that you are not in pain.
Thai massage is sometimes described as painful, but a licensed massage therapist should use your feedback and adjust the degree of pressure and stretching.
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