Thai yoga Massage

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Thai yoga Massage

Postby massageme on Sat Dec 10, 2005 2:41 pm

Does anyone here practice Thai Yoga Massage?
I've just been introduced to it and because it's not a popular massage here I'm not sure how to go about marketing it and letting people know what it is.
Any suggestions?
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Postby Vision001 on Sun Dec 11, 2005 2:43 am

My brother, Brian Rahm ( [email protected] ) is an instructor with the Lotus Palm school of Thai Massage. He was just down from Vermont and gave the best presentation imagineable. I found it to be great work and I think you will have an easy time promoting it. People are going to like it a lot. I told him about this post and he will sign on and become a member of our little society when he gets back home tomorrow. I think he should be able to give you some good ideas. Good luck with it.

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Thai massage

Postby NaplesLMT on Fri Dec 23, 2005 4:01 am

I have been trained by Martin at www.zenthaimassage.com. His website contains a lot of info including his schedule of classes around the world.
One marketing idea is to target Yoga lovers as this modality is sometimes called "thai yoga". It sounds like you are doing some research before spending the time and money to be trained. If you can find a one day intro, take it. Like most, you will be hooked :P
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Postby massageme on Fri Dec 30, 2005 9:08 pm

Awesome I will do just that! Thank you so much NaplesLMT! ...and Vision001 I look forward to your brother joining the board!
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Postby Nique on Thu Feb 02, 2006 12:30 pm

I do thai massage and often describe it as being similar to "partnered yoga," emphasizing the stretching and passive movement elements of it. My marathon runners LOVE it.
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Postby massageme on Thu Feb 02, 2006 3:55 pm

Awesome! How do you promote it if you don't mind me asking?
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Postby HolisticMT on Sun Feb 26, 2006 9:21 pm

I love Thai Massage.

Most of my athletic clients request it.

There are a few Thai instructors in my area. It isn't as popular here as I thought it would be. Maybe in time the word will get out.
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Postby MRSkitten on Thu Apr 06, 2006 6:43 am

I do Thai and it markets itself word-of-mouth from my clients. I was once told, "oh, don't take that, you'll never get people from the table to the floor" but this hasn't been true. Those who try it usually rebook ever after for Thai instead of table, unless they have one or two specific areas they want me to focus on (Thai is much more holistic in nature).

I'm finding that so many components of medical massage are already addressed and in a much more comfortable way by Thai techniques that I've begun to add ever-larger portions of Thai work to my table sessions. Stretching has always been a big part of my personal massage style, so though clients may be a little surprised the first time I gently tuck my foot into their armpit, the lovely long release this gives (need great balance, here!) wins them over instantly.

The very first time I ever even heard of Thai was during Shiatsu training. It was kind of a two-week offshoot and I was instantly hooked, though it took me almost two more years to find instructors I wanted to study under. There's so much variety you can never grow bored with it, and it's so much easier, and refreshing, for my own body.
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Postby akb on Mon Jun 12, 2006 6:15 pm

MRSkitten wrote:though it took me almost two more years to find instructors I wanted to study under. There's so much variety you can never grow bored with it, and it's so much easier, and refreshing, for my own body.


I am wondering how you chose your education and what some deciding factors were. I am interested in Thai Massage, I have a book by Ananda Apfelbaum I am reading through, but when I look for classes, what am I looking for?

Thanks!
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Postby MRSkitten on Mon Jun 12, 2006 7:15 pm

Akb,
I don't know about anyone else, but the quality of instruction (where they studied, and under whom) and the personality of the instructor is key for me. Nothing puts me off like the one who boasted for almost three hours straight of his Thai massage prowess...seeming to forget that "do not boast of your knowledge" is one of the primary rules of Thai massage!

I've taken Thai a few different times now, and each time it adds to the depth of my practice. You can't ever know too much or think just one class is enough. This is something that truly takes a lifetime to master--and perhaps not even then.

One school I can heartily and without any reservation recommend is The Naga Center (www.NagaCenter.org). Not only was my understanding and body mechanics (something virtually ignored in previous classes) deepened to a whole new level, the instructor (director Nephyr Jacobsen) brought not only a most thorough knowledge of the subject but a compassionate, nurturing teaching style. Before you go all "ugh, touchy-feely", what I mean is, not only did she impart the necessary knowledge, but our class was evenly divided between those totally new to Thai and those experienced at some level. Body sizes and level of flexibility ran the gamut. A challenging task for any teacher.

Nephyr was able to teach all of us with ease and bring us all to a much higher plane of learning than we started with, without moving too quickly for the beginners or too slow for the more experienced. When it was important to be quiet, she was, allowing us to learn our own individual way. When it was important to speak up, she did. This is a very delicate art that even gifted teachers sometimes lack. She was also sensitive to the feelings of the persons who might not be comfortable with the morning and close of class chanting, taking pains to make clear the purpose and meaning of the prayer chants and the altar and inviting them to participate in whatever way put them at ease and was meaningful to their own personal beliefs. For me, this was the highlight. Nobody had ever before explained that the bodywork process is merely a clearing of energy so that the ending prayer can have the most effect. As important as the sen line work is, it is the prayer that is the whole purpose for the massage...how beautiful! This really changed my intent when I work and it is noticably more powerful.

As for books, please visit www.TaoMountain.org and get yourself a copy of Pierce Salguero's book, "Encyclopedia of Thai Massage". I have quite a few and this one is the most valuable by far. Descriptive and helpful as it is, you still shouldn't try it without proper instruction, as there is much that isn't explained (probably on purpose). But the rich background and history he provides is something you won't find anywhere else.

This should give you a great starting point. Sorry to be so windy, but traditional Thai is a healing artform I am passionate about.
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Postby akb on Mon Jun 12, 2006 8:38 pm

Thanks MRSkitten, I will take a look. Are those classes near you?

When looking for who trainers have studied with and such, what is a good resource for that info, and are there certain names that hold more weight than others? I am sure spotting the boasters would be easy enough.

I'd love to hear from others who have Thai training info to share, or how they market, introduce, or transition relaxation clients to this form of bodywork!
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Postby tara_b on Wed Jun 14, 2006 6:01 am

I took a week-long Traditional Thai massage course at Tao Mountain with Pierce Salguero a couple of years ago and can definitely attest to his awesome amount of knowledge of and passion for Thai massage, Thai culture and Thai tradition. I believe the teacher at the Naga Center studied under Pierce as well, so I would second that it's probably a great place to learn as well :) From MRSkitten's description, it sounds as though the class at the Naga Center was taught in the exact same way as the class I took at Tao Mountain. It was a truly awesome and enlightening experience on many levels.

What I loved about Pierce's instruction, and one of the initial reasons I even chose him as a teacher to begin with (it was an 18 hr drive to get there but well worth it!), was that he took care to stay true to Thai massage in it's traditional form, as he had learned it in his many years spent in Thailand. There are a lot of variations out there and, while I'm sure some of them are great as well, I was really interested in learning *traditional* Thai...there're reasons they've been doing it a specific way for thousands of years, ya know?

I'm unsure how to effectively market it though. There are VERY few Thai practitioners in my area, which would be a good thing for me and the few other therapist there are, if I could market it in the right way.
It's such a great form of bodywork that leaves you feeling completely centered/balanced (both the client AND the therapist!)
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Postby MRSkitten on Wed Jun 14, 2006 6:23 am

Tara B, yes, you are correct. And I am so thrilled you loved it as much as I did. Nephyr studied under Pierce and also strives to be as faithful as possible to the royal northern style as it has been traditonally taught for so many generations. This devotion to preserving the traditional knowledge in as pure a form as possible is impressive and a large reason I chose them.

Traditional Thai massage has been a beautifully effective healing artform for thousands of years...trying to invent the wheel here or blend other modalities into it and still try to call it "Thai massage" is simply wrong.

I don't have an answer for the marketing. I don't advertise, so my newbies come from word of mouth. But it is so very different that people are rather slow to pick up on it. Usually clients will see me on the table for a long time before trying Thai...but once they try it, that is all they usually want ever after. At this point Thai takes about 1/3 to half of my weekly hours but increasingly I really want to be doing nothing else. It's just more effective, longer-lasting, and who doesn't love feeling fresh and relaxed after doing three hours of powerful, deep work without any strain to your body? :D
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Postby BackrubMonster on Wed Jun 14, 2006 3:36 pm

I'm looking forward to studying Thai Massage after my initial basic training is complete - I'm heading on toward the 500, but at least I'll qualify to take whatever other electives come along in the process. :) One of my Basic instructors teaches the Thai courses at our school & I'm really excited to check them out. I have a friend who exclaimed OMG LEARN THAI!!! the moment I told her I was going into massage training. woot!
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Postby MRSkitten on Wed Jun 14, 2006 8:54 pm

The marketing question kept picking at me so I gave it more thought to figure out why. Then I remembered that Pierce's philosophy is that Traditional Thai shouldn't be promoted based on marketibility but rather the spirit of metta and academic honesty should be the focus of our practice.

So what this tells me is when we are ready for as much Thai cleintele as we'd like, if we focus our attention to the 'right' things in our heart and actions, they will come. No worrying required.

My understanding of the 'right' things means not only practicing the movements with the loving-kindness attitude, attention and precision with which they were taught (allowing only the minor variations from established masters) but now most importantly, not trying to separate the massage itself from the spiritual tradition that it is part of.
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Postby reneelmt on Thu Jun 15, 2006 5:56 am

Would love to jump in here although I do not do Thai massage yet. When in school, we had an instructor from another branch come in to do a Thai demo (she was giving a CEU class that weekend at our location) and I fell in love with the technique. She was so upbeat and had such a passion for her work it was contagious. I have one of her tapes, but have as yet been unable to fit the classes into my schedule (and pocketbook). Anyone interested in learning more can check out her website: http://www.swethaimassage.com/ I'd really like to be able one day to go with her to Thailand to study. Good luck in finding a class that's right for you.
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Postby MRSkitten on Thu Jun 15, 2006 7:17 am

Yes, I've taken the Swe-Thai. The purpose was simply to pick up some good draping techniques for many of the Thai hip stretches I like to bring to the table. The instructor was very good, but I was saddened that virtually no philosophy behind the Thai work was covered. That is no criticism of the instructor--the class was of a different mindset and would not have appreciated that information. They just wanted to know a way to make money and not burn out their thumbs.

Traditional Thai is a very specific ritual, and when we take away from that and add things not part of it we can't offer a genuine Thai experience.

Swe-Thai was basically designed as a very specific routine for spa workers to reproduce to offer a more deep massage while saving their bodies. It's a nice enough routine and I'm sure others have no problem offering it as a stand-alone service, but my test clients either commented there was not enough Thai or that there wasn't enough deep tissue and Swedish. It does require that you stand on the table and that your client can be relxed and comfortable with that. Didn't get what I'd hoped for with the draping (apparently just throw enough fabric at it and hope things stay covered, not quite good enough when the majority of my clients are actually nude under there and I'm tyring to avoid unsettling drafts in the pelvic area :shock: ), though the class was still interesting and the body mechanics emphasis was excellent. I also really liked that we had the option of adding an extra day strictly for refining technique.

My table work draws from every modality I've ever learned, customized to the client and situation, and that's where the Swe-Thai techniques seem most appropriate in my practice, with Thai offering staying pure to what I was taught, on the floor and with nothing else added.
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Postby reneelmt on Thu Jun 15, 2006 1:25 pm

Guess I should have clarified. Margie is a traditional Thai instructor trained in Thailand, and an instructor at the Florida College of Natural Health. She developed Swe-thai as an alternative to working on the floor. The classes offered in school, and the demo I saw was trad. Thai. She is now also offering Tabltop Thai ,but I haven't seen the literature on it yet. There is a class that goes to Thailand every year to train in Trad. Thai and this is the one I would love to take.
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Postby MRSkitten on Thu Jun 15, 2006 7:21 pm

Yes; Margie is a very good instructor and like most, she does offer an annual Thailand trip for traditional work at Old Medicine Hospital. She was a fun and patient instructor, even with the attendees who preferred to giggle than learn. I am positive when you go on her trip you'll have a great time and learn a lot.
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Postby melb on Fri Jun 16, 2006 8:27 pm

Any opinions on Deon de Wet http://www.deonthaiyoga.com/ I think he's targetting his training at beauty therapists a lot. He's running a short 3 day course out here that fits very well in my schedule, so I'm considering doing it. It would probably give me enough of an intro to decide to pursue it further.
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Postby MRSkitten on Fri Jun 16, 2006 8:52 pm

Hmmmm :smt017 Haven't ever heard of any that are less than 40-hours to teach just the basic level, so I'm very curious what he could be cramming into only 3 days. Couldn't find any details on that on his site.

Melb, if this is possible, do have a few complete sessions from as many local Thai therapists as you can. That way you'll know what the entire thing should feel like to your clients as well as get an idea of what is required of the practitioner and have a better feel for if it's something you'd enjoy doing. Ask them where they trained, who they recommend, etc.

You're so lucky to already be much closer to Thailand, if you eventually choose to study abroad...it's a 23-hour trip for me!
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Postby melb on Mon Jun 19, 2006 7:20 pm

this thread was bumped up in one of the other areas about the mats used..... http://www.bodyworkonline.com/forum/vie ... php?t=1223
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thailand

Postby bodyinspirit on Thu Aug 03, 2006 12:44 pm

I spent a month in Chaing Mai a few years ago...
studied at ITM about 60.00 dollars u.s. for thirty hours a week of training.
A two hour thai massage is around 14-20 dollars I got about 20 of them while I was there...and like any good therapist they varied every massage....the working exactly as a "routine" is taught is just a begining step....
they actually targeted short tight muscles just like a rolfer..or nmt practioner....when an area was tight (short) they would wiggle it and say..."energy blockage" meaning it did not have free ROM....

good luck with everything....
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Postby akb on Mon Aug 28, 2006 5:43 am

I just got back from a weekend Thai Yoga Bodywork class and I am very excited to begin a practice in this method!

The class is a very basic introduction of SomaVeda Thai Massage created by Dr. Anthony James who has been studying Thai Massage (both North and South styles) since the 1980's.

It was a 16 hour course in which we learned 24 techniques for a four position bodywork session. We were given a workbook with some history of Thai Massage, watched some video of Dr. James teach about the moving meditation/healing intent/energetic qualities of thai bodywork.

The class was good and the instruction was also very good. We practiced "flows" and the moving meditation aspect of thai bodywork was focused upon heavily and was body mechanics and technique delivery.

There are several levels of SomaVeda Thai Massage. The next level is taught in a 5 day format.

Dr. James is the founder of the International Thai Therapists Association.

Overall is was a great class, very affordable, and the closest one to me. I would feel very good about taking more classes in the SomaVeda series.
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Thai massage courses

Postby Lotus Palm on Mon Jan 28, 2008 8:16 pm

Hi there,

I'm a staff member at the Lotus Palm School and Thai massage practitioner there as well.

Having done my studies there, here's what I can offer as first-hand experience with Lotus Palm courses. Their hands-on teaching methods are systematic and standardized; this means that when a student is taught a posture sequence, it is taught the same way every time, by all its teachers. The ability to modify or leave postures out of a sequence comes with time as the pracititioner's knowledge and repertoire of postures increases.

The Essential Certification program equips the student with 3 hours' worth of massage techniques, including the Four Basics that are fundamental to the practice of Thai massage at any level. The Intermediate Certification incorporates the Ayurvedic theoretical components and new postures to tailor the massage according to the recipient's dosha. The Advanced Certification includes anatomy as it applies specifically to Thai massage, and Advanced Postures. By this stage, the practitioner is able to intuitively construct a Thai masage session suited to a person's physical body and dosha(s), into a flowing dance with effortless transitions.

I have a regular massage client who said the best Thai massage she ever got was at Lotus Palm, mainly because of the structured sequence and transitions (her words). She said it was very different from what she had received in Thailand, in that it has been tailored to suit the western hemisphere's needs and approach to massage in general.

I love Thai massage and Lotus Palm. If anyone has any questions to ask about either, I'll do my best to answer, whether in a thread or a personal message.

Metta y'all,
www.lotuspalm.com

Lotus Palm School of Thai Yoga Massage
5337 Saint Laurent, suite 240
Montreal, Canada H2T1S5
Tel. 514 270-5713
[email protected]

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