Ancient Asian massage is still practiced in various forms around the world today.
What we now refer to as Asian massage techniques were originally healing rituals that were developed over many centuries in India, China and the Far East. The western world has seen an increased interest in the more holistic health approach found in disciplines such as Pilates and Yoga, and this has led to a natural interest in the Asian massage forms including Thai Massage and Shiatsu.
Thai massage is misleading in name, as it was actually first developed in India. It utilizes an ancient breathing technique known as Pranayama, and combines it with guided stretching and meridian pressure point therapy. The Pranyama breathing method relaxes the body and combines with the stretching and pressure point manipulation to strengthen the nervous system. At the end of a Thai massage a ritualized final relaxation is performed which leaves most customers intensely rested.
Taking the manipulation of pressure points one step further is “tui na“, more commonly known as the Chinese art of acupuncture. Acupuncture was developed over five thousand years ago and works by applying pressure to the body in certain key points. These points allow the acupuncture to activate the bodies own self-healing abilities. Acupuncture has been successfully used for centuries in the treatment of back pain, headaches and general stress. Combined with the correct relaxation music and a favorable environment it is an extremely relaxing procedure that has the added benefit of balancing the body and assisting with weight loss. Learn more about 5 benefit of Tui na
The most well known Japanese method of massage is Shiatsu. It’s key focus is energy rebalance within the body of the person receiving the massage. The rebalance uses he thumbs, the palms or fingers to apply pressure to specific areas of the body. The benefits from Shiatsu massage are numerous, and can include re-aligning the bone system, improving circulatory function, improved skin elasticity, greater muscle flexibility and the balancing of the bodies nervous system. Besides Shiatsu, there is another well known Japanese massage named ‘Nuru massage’, this is a kind of sensual massage develop for lovers and parteners, you can learn more about nuru massage at nuru massage guide.
From Indonesia comes Javanese massage, another system of massage that uses all parts of the hand, including fingertips and knuckles to stoke, knead and massage each of the muscle areas being worked on. Javanese massage frequently uses a massage oil to help facilitate the massage therapy. The massage has multiple uses, working on the muscles and nerve groups to relive tension and back pain. It can also be employed to speed and assist in the healing of fractures. An Indonesian Javanese massage is much more forceful than other varieties of Asian massage. At the time it may feel painful, but the long term benefits are worth the short term inconvenience.
Because Asian massages takes the whole body into account, it often has unforseen benefits as a result of the balancing effects it has on the body. A back problem for instance may begin it’s treatment with massage of the foot or leg. This is reflective of an art that has been developed over 5000 years and reminds us once again that even all this time ago practitioners of massage had a remarkable understanding of how parts of the human body interrelate and depend on each other.