What is traditional Thai massage?

Traditional Thai massage is practised on a floor mat. Both the masseur and client are lightly clothed. The massage consists of pressure along energy lines and on acupressure points, plus stretching exercises. It surprises many people to find that the normal Thai massage duration is one and a half to two hours, that you remain clothed, and there is no or little rubbing with oil or lotion.

Thai massage is an holistic practice, so rather than treating just the sore part it is normal to give a full body massage, which is customised for any given problems you might be experiencing. This makes sense because the soreness in your neck and shoulders might stem from the way you are standing due to a tightness in one hip. Indeed the Thai sen or energy line which runs across the shoulders can be traced through hips, legs and feet. The Thai approach is to balance the energy flow in the entire body so that it can heal itself.

What to expect from your massage session

Your first session will start with a little form filling, so that I have a record of how to contact you and any relevant medical details. We will discuss this, and how you are feeling on the day so that I can select appropriate components of the vast massage repertoire. Please be aware that I am not qualified to form an sort of medical diagnosis, however I can refer you to an appropriate resource if that appears advisable.

The massage is given on a floor mat, which is firm but comfortable. You will remain clothed throughout. Please wear light or fairly thin fabric trousers/leggings and a T-shirt. The sort of thing you might wear to the gym is ideal. In the cooler months the mat is heated and I may cover you with a blanket so that you remain warm and relaxed.

My normal practice is to start at your feet and work towards your head. I'll apply firm but bearable pressure along lines which run all over your body, and to specific acupressure points. I'll also move you into various yoga-like stretches, and ask you to roll over or sit as we work along the lines. If there's anything that you dislike, find embarrassing, too intimate, or doesn't seem to be working for you please just say. Thai massage is so vast in scope that there are alternative ways to achieve almost everything.

The massage often finishes with a neck and or face massage, followed by time for you to lay in a state of complete relaxation. This important time gives your body chance to absorb the massage. I will sit alongside you whilst you rest. Start to move and awaken your body gradually when you are ready. If there is time I like to share tea with you afterwards.

The total session time will therefore be around two and a half hours.