Intro to Thai Massage

January 25, 2018 / Ed Graef  / 

If you’re considering something a bit different, for your next trip to the massage therapist, you may want to try out Thai massage. Thai massage is an ancient method, which focuses more on the person as a whole, and also utilizes different mechanical techniques to provide relief and create peace in body and mind.

How is Thai Massage Different?

First of all, Thai massage is about not just the body, but the total mind-body-spirit connection. This is something to take into consideration, before going to a Thai massage session; if the idea of something as ephemeral as spirit being involved in your massage therapy isn’t very appealing to you, then you may want to stick with Swedish and other methods. However, if you’re interested in exploring this further, it’s definitely worth trying.

In terms of the actual techniques, while every Thai massage therapist is slightly different, the overall approach and methodology has it’s origins in Traditional Chinese Medicine and Ayurvedic Medicine; so, as you might expect, it can involve various herbs, oils, balms, and the use of heat to relax the client. There may also be aromatherapy and music involved, all to create a certain atmosphere, to relax not just your muscles, but your mind and spirit as well, to bring a greater balance and wholeness. This is the goal of Thai Massage.

What’s a Session Like?

Unlike Swedish and other forms of massage, in Thai massage, you remain fully clothed. As mentioned, various oils, poulstices, and aroma therapy may be utilized, based on the conversation you’ve had with your massage therapist in the intake, to address your specific personality and needs.

The actual massage itself involves the therapist maintaining contact with the client throughout the massage, and focusing heavily on acupressure points, joints, and other areas of concern. The idea behind this form of massage is that it’s not merely to relax your muscles, but also to release blockages of energy, chi, or prana which may have developed, similar to acupuncture or other traditional healing modalities. The therapist may take the client into positions similar to yoga, and pull or stretch the client this way or that, or engage in rocking motions. This is all to release blockages, and create balance.

While this is happening, you may notice thoughts and feelings emerging, which you didn’t know were there; in traditional medicine, they might say that these are psychic or energetic blockages which were being stored in various parts of your body; they are emerging in your mind, because you are releasing them.


When it comes to the results, it will all depend on various factors, such as the mastery of your Thai massage therapist, your own openness to this form of massage and it’s goals and mindset, and how much work there is to be done. If your blockages run deeply enough, it may take several sessions to completely alleviate them. However, it’s hard to imagine coming away from a Thai Massage session less relaxed, so even if you end up deciding it wasn’t for you, it should be thoroughly enjoyable and provide some stress relief and peace of mind. Enjoy!