11 May 2023
Thai massage is an ancient practice that originated in India more than 2,500 years ago. It is a unique form of bodywork that involves applying gentle pressure and stretching techniques to relax the whole body and mind. Unlike other types of massage, Thai massage does not require oil or a massage table. Instead, you lie fully clothed on a mat on the floor while a practitioner moves and manipulates your body in various ways.
Thai massage has many health benefits that are supported by modern science. In this blog post, we will explore five of them and explain how they can improve your well-being.
1. Lowers stress
Stress is a common problem in today’s fast-paced world. It can affect your mental and physical health in negative ways, such as causing anxiety, depression, insomnia, headaches, high blood pressure, and heart disease.
Thai massage can help you lower your stress levels and achieve a state of relaxation. A 2015 study found that Thai massage significantly reduces the levels of a stress marker called sAA in the saliva. The researchers concluded that Thai massage is more effective at reducing stress in healthy people than simply resting.
2. Boosts energy
If you feel tired or sluggish, Thai massage can help you boost your energy and mental stimulation. A randomized trial compared the effects of Thai and Swedish massages in people who were experiencing fatigue. The results showed that Thai massage increased energy and alertness, while Swedish massage improved relaxation and sleep.
The reason why Thai massage can enhance your energy is that it is based on the concept of energy lines, or Sen, that run through your body. According to this theory, tight muscles cause blockages within different Sen, which reduce the flow of life energy and cause pain and illness. Thai massage uses various techniques to open or constrict different Sen and correct the flow of life energy.
3. Relieves headaches
If you suffer from chronic headaches, such as migraine or tension headaches, Thai massage may help you ease your symptoms. Several small studies have found that Thai massage reduces the intensity and frequency of both migraine and tension headaches.
One of the techniques that Thai massage practitioners use to relieve headaches is called court-type. This involves applying pressure to specific energy channels on the head, face, neck, and shoulders that are associated with headache pain.
4. Reduces back pain
Back pain is one of the most common complaints among adults. It can be caused by various factors, such as poor posture, muscle strain, injury, or degenerative conditions. Back pain can limit your mobility and affect your quality of life.
Thai massage may be an effective way to reduce back pain without using medication. Researchers in Thailand studied the effects of Thai massage on 120 people with nonspecific low back pain. They found that both Thai massage and joint mobilization (a technique that involves applying pressure and movement to painful areas) significantly reduced pain and improved function after four weeks of treatment.
Another study found that Thai massage reduced back pain associated with trigger points (tight, painful muscle clusters) in the upper back.
5. Increases flexibility and range of motion
Flexibility and range of motion are important for maintaining your health and preventing injuries. They allow you to perform daily activities with ease and enjoy physical activities without pain or stiffness.
Thai massage can help you improve your flexibility and range of motion by stretching your muscles and joints in various directions. Some people call Thai massage “assisted yoga” because it resembles some yoga poses. The practitioner may also use their hands, feet, elbows, or knees to apply pressure and create leverage.
A study involving 60 patients with knee osteoarthritis found that three weeks of Thai massage improved their pain, function, and range of motion. Another study involving 40 healthy volunteers found that a single session of Thai massage increased their flexibility and joint position sense.