OUR MASSAGE THERAPY
Our Thai yoga therapy (massage) borrows from traditional Thai massage practices, but differs by integrating the mindset of western medicine and adds modern schools of thought on stretching and massage.
Put yourself in the hands of one of our therapists and experience them perform yoga on you. This lazy man’s yoga enables you to receive some of the benefits of a yoga session without intense effort and yoga expertise. This can be particularly helpful for someone who would like to move toward wellness, but does not yet have the strength or stamina for a workout. Thai yoga therapy can begin conditioning and stretching muscles.
Gain flexibility by stretching your body in new ways that increases the range of motion in muscles and joints. Those that receive regular Thai bodywork can progressively develop increased flexibility and mobility. You can expect to gain flexibility in your back, shoulders, hips and hamstrings.
Our Thai yoga therapy is a synthesis of many styles and influences. Thai yoga therapy has developed with influences from Thailand, India, China, and other Asian cultures. Thai massage is sometimes referred to as either northern or southern style. Our main style is the northern style or rural/commoner style. We do not follow any established pattern or sequences of moves as in traditional Thai massage. This is a more laid back customized style that has a relaxed approach, extensive contact between the therapist and client, applied stretching, and a very broad range of positions and techniques.
Our Thai yoga therapy is performed on you fully clothed while you are sitting or lying on a supportive mat on the floor. You need to wear comfortable pants and clothing that can be stretched like yoga or workout clothes. No lotion or oils are used. The therapist moves you while using their bare feet, knees, elbows, forearms, palms, and thumbs to step on, press, twist, compress, and stretch you. You will be slowly and firmly pushed and pulled through a variety of yoga poses. You may be lifted, shaken, rotated, stretched, twisted, and placed in traction. The therapist may crawl on you, walk on you, kneel on you, and sit on you. Thai yoga therapy requires close contact between the therapist and recipient. If you feel uncomfortable at any time for any reason, tell your therapist immediately. Together you can decide to either change the pose which is causing discomfort or stop the session.
The therapist adapts the techniques used based on the respective weights of the two people and available flexibility. The therapist will give instructions to you to participate in some dynamic movements by holding the therapist’s hands, and by breathing and moving in coordination with the therapist.
Those with a regular yoga practice can benefit the most from our Thai yoga therapy, because greater personal flexibility enables a therapist to use more advanced therapeutic positions and manipulations.
Thai yoga therapy stretches the body in ways that would be difficult to duplicate by yourself. When you are stretched by a therapist, it is more effective than self stretching. When the body is passively stretched, it can be gently pulled a little further than you would be capable of doing on your own and often triggers a relaxation response in the brain that creates a new reset point for relaxed muscle length.
Experienced therapists combine multiple moves in sequences to simultaneous stretch you while applying deep pressure on muscles and tissue giving you more work in less time.
The speed or intensity of the session can be stimulating when performed vigorously, or it can be done in a slower gentle rhythmic soothing manner designed to relax. Be sure to communicate to your therapist the mood you are seeking.
Our Thai yoga therapy allows for much deeper work than normal massage if desired. We
are able to deliver deep pressure by using leverage techniques and up to the therapist’s full body weight. The pressure used will depend on the client and goals of the therapy. Pressure is varied according to your preference; always tell your therapist if you want more or less pressure.
If you request a longer session and deeper work, you can experience the equivalent of an intense workout. Longer sessions allow more pressure techniques that are most helpful for the treatment of pain. After a session with deep work, it is normal to feel muscle soreness in the days following because muscle fibers have been pulled, pressed, and twisted. Properly manipulating muscle fibers stimulates the regrowth of cells, and greater blood flow in the area increases tissue healing. Athletes experience faster recovery times when receiving deep therapy. Deep pressure can also break down adhesions in connective tissue. Skilled therapists can break up scar tissue with deep pressure which can be initially painful, but help reduce long term pain in an area and return some flexibility.
Therapists are trained to use pressure points based on the client’s session goals.
Thai yoga therapy sessions are typically performed in 90 minute or longer sessions and we offer the service from 30 minutes to 4 hours. Longer sessions provide for the deepest work. The session progresses with warming the muscles, gentle joint manipulations, stretches and pressure work, ending with a cool down.
The power of touch can soothe, release tension, and bring comfort. You will notice a pleasant sensation when receiving the sustained pressing of Thai yoga therapy. The therapy causes a release of endorphins into the blood stream with the associated feeling of well being and natural pain relief that occurs by preventing nerve cells from releasing more pain signals.
THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT THAI YOGA THERAPY
Arrive early to fill out intake forms and your health history. In some cases, we will recommend against receiving therapy or require you to obtain clearance from a medical professional.
Shoes are not worn inside the studio.
Breathing is especially important during more intensive stretches. The key to achieving deeper stretches is proper breathing. Breathe deeply into the abdomen rather than holding your breath which will probably be first reaction. Focus on deep breathing and time exhales to occur at the deepest part of the stretch
Cell phones need to be turned completely off.
Our Thai yoga therapy is performed on you fully clothed. The therapist works through the clothing and will be stretching you. It is important to wear light clothing such as yoga clothes, workout clothing, or a comfortable stretchy pair of pants and a light top.
Drink eight glasses each with 8-ounces of water (2 liters) on days you receive Thai yoga therapy. Come hydrated – a session can be easily stopped to allow for restroom breaks and you are only charged for the time spent working on you. This hydration is critical for reducing muscle soreness and removing toxins after a session.
You may not be under the influence of drugs or alcohol when you receive Thai yoga therapy.
Have a nearly empty stomach – Don’t eat within 2 hours of a session and it is best to not eat or do strenuous exercise for at least an hour after your session.
Tipping is customary for therapy services. The industry standard is 15-20% and gratuity in cash is greatly appreciated.
No gum may be chewed in the studio.
You and the therapist will be close during the session so you need to have good personal hygiene. Please do not use strong fragrances or lotions.
If you are under 18, you will need a parent or guardian present or written permission on our form.
Everyone has different sensitive areas and pain thresholds. The same pressure applied to one person may produce only a mild sensation that for another person might be excruciating. Therapists are trained to look for indications of discomfort and can normally sense if there is a problem. However, you are responsible to tell your therapist about any pain you are experiencing. Your feedback to the therapist during the session is essential for your safety and enjoyment. Determine difference between true pain which indicates danger and the healthy feeling from stretching and challenging muscles
You are in control of the therapy pressure and may end a session at any time if you are uncomfortable.
Problem AreasTell your therapist about any pain or specific problem areas that you would like addressed.
Use the restroom before therapy.
Thai yoga therapy is effective in treating a wide variety of ailments. It is often more effective and cheaper than other forms of treatment. As a natural method, it has fewer side effects than chemical medical treatments. It increases circulation, boosts the immune system, enhances muscle recovery, increases flexibility, tones internal organs, and reduces stress. Many people have found it helpful in managing or eliminating chronic pain. This therapy causes a release of endorphins which counteract pain and produce a powerful feeling of well being. Despite the many health benefits Thai yoga therapy does not replace conventional medical treatments.
Numerous studies document various benefits to receiving regular therapeutic massage like Thai yoga therapy. Not everyone will experience all the benefits and the benefit will vary from person to person.
Thai yoga therapy focuses on releasing muscle tension and knots by stretching and pressing the muscles. When your muscles are relaxed your joints will have increased range of motion. It improves: circulation, alignment, sleep patterns, digestion, alertness, mood, flexibility, and energy. It reduces: stress, muscle tension, aches and pains. General benefits include:
Massage typically lowers blood pressure – see also the description on diabetics.
Massage releases the stress-relieving hormone endorphin for many people.
Thai yoga therapy stimulates circulation and can improve circulation deep within muscles. This increased blood flow in the muscles improves the healing of damaged muscles. Pressing actions also aid in the removal of toxins.
Improved sleep quality is a common benefit of therapy. If this is your objective, getting a therapy session just before bed works the best.
Massage stimulates the lymphatic system which clears waste from your body.
Massage has been documented to alleviate depression in people with chronic fatigue syndrome.
Massage benefits people who suffer from edema (fluid retention) by increasing the function of the lymphatic system there can be an increased draining of the lymph nodes.
Massage reduces the levels of stress hormones (norepinephrine and cortisol) and the degree of change is correlated to the intensity of the therapy.
Massage therapy can be effective in helping treat Bulimia by helping reduce anxiety and depression.
Tell your therapist if you have either a high or low blood sugar condition. Diabetics need to monitor their blood glucose levels before and after receiving bodywork. Deep tissue therapy can cause blood sugar levels to become dangerously low. Massage can increase the absorption of diabetic medications. Regular therapy can help regulate blood sugar by improving circulation of the blood and lymphatic system which improves the uptake of insulin into cells.
Surgical patients who are treated with massage therapy have a decreased recovery time. Massage therapy helps to increase circulation, which helps to promote healing.
The benefits below apply to anyone receiving Thai yoga therapy, but they are particularly beneficial to those who are regularly engaged in athletic performance. Athletes receiving regular Thai bodywtears your muscle fibersork can undertake more intense training with reduced risk of injury. Thai yoga therapy stimulates production of elastic muscle fiber.
Strenuous exercise tears your muscle fibers which is why an intense workout can leave you sore for days – then the fibers grow back making the muscle stronger. Massage increases PGC-1 alpha protein levels which leads to the creation of more muscle mitochondria that generate energy for cell growth. Muscle mitochondria lets athletes burn more lactic acid allowing the muscles to work harder and longer.
Massage shortly after exercise reduces the level of NFkB proteins thereby reducing inflammation.
Massage reduces pain by as much as 25-50 percent resulting from delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS). DOMS is muscle pain and stiffness felt hours or days after strenuous exercise
Massage including Thai yoga therapy is safe to receive at all stages of pregnancy. Consult with a doctor if you are pregnant and wish to receive therapy as it may not be advised in a high-risk pregnancy.
Studies show that 10-25% of all pregnancies end in miscarriage; mostly in the first trimester. There is no evidence that massage can cause a miscarriage. There is strong evidence that massage incorporated into regular prenatal care is beneficial to both the mother and the baby. Studies show the following benefits of receiving regular massage during pregnancy:
Relief of muscle aches and joint pains
Decreased symptoms of depression
Reduced stress hormones (norepinephrine and cortisol)
Increased hormones that affect positive moods and the sensation of pleasure (dopamine and serotonin - low levels of these hormones are associated with depression)
Improved hormone levels lead to fewer complications during birth and fewer instances of newborn complications such as low birth weight
Reduced swelling by improving circulation
Reduced collection of fluids in swollen joints
Improved removal of waste products by the body’s lymph system
Reduced sciatic nerve pain by releasing tension on nearby muscle
Let your therapist know you are pregnant. It is common to use a side lying position for pregnant woman during massage. It is important to notify your therapist if you are experiencing:
Pre-term contractions or consistent Braxton-Hicks contractions
Bleeding, abdominal pain or cramping
Lower back, thigh or pelvic pain
Nauseous or vomiting (make appointments for times that you are not experiencing these symptoms)
Children can benefit from Thai therapy particularly those with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, autism, bulimia, cystic fibrosis, eczema, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, or type 1 diabetes. Children under the age of 18 must have a signed authorization form and may require a guardian to be present, see clinic for details.
The benefits of Thai yoga therapy can be particularly helpful to improve quality of life for a senior. It is particularly helpful to reduce pain and maintain mobility. As a form of assisted yoga, the senior’s body is gently stretched and pulled and receives many of the benefits of yoga exercise.
Blood circulation is particularly important for seniors especially diabetics, and regular Thai therapy can stimulate healthy blood flow to the extremities and help prevent complications like leg ulcers and gangrene.
Improved blood and lymph circulation can help seniors recover more quickly from injury, and help increase their vitality. Thai therapy improves the function of the lymphatic systems which assists in toxin removal from the body.
Thai yoga therapy decreases muscle and joint stiffness by gentle manipulations and by mobilizing a senior's aching muscles, tendons, ligaments, and joints.
Lost range of motion can be recaptured through improvements in the condition of muscles and joints. Through Thai yoga therapy muscles can receive improved blood flow and be gently stretched to improve muscle length and tone. Joint range of motion can be improved by reducing inflammation and pain around the joint. Restoring mobility in a senior often results in a boost of self–esteem.
Thai yoga therapy is often beneficial for supporting cancer treatments. People who have cancer and are undergoing radiation or chemotherapy may have fragile tissue around the site being treated. Absolute statements cannot be made about the affects of massage and cancer based on the information currently available. It is important to talk to your physician about receiving Thai yoga therapy. The right to informed consent to receive Thai yoga therapy rests with the person with cancer.
Providing Thai yoga therapy to persons with cancer is an advanced skill and only certain of our therapists are permitted to do so. Skilled touch can be beneficial: during hospitalization, before and after surgery, sometimes during chemotherapy and radiation, while in remission, and during the end stages of life.
Many hospitals and cancer centers now offer massage to cancer patients. It is helpful to reduce the pain of backaches and headaches. Thai yoga therapy for cancer patients can decrease stress, anxiety, depression, nausea, and fatigue. Cancer patients suffer pain from cancer, pain from treatment, and pain from muscle related tension. Thai yoga therapy can help “take the edge off” acute pain and for some people relieve it entirely. The treatment can soften, relax and elongate tight or knotted muscles, allowing them to move more freely without stiffness or discomfort. With muscles relaxed, joints have increased range of motion. Thai yoga therapy can help improve energy levels and facilitates improved sleeping patterns. Many people find that massage brings a temporary feeling of well-being. The benefits of Thai yoga therapy can be a low-cost approach in managing some of the side-effects of cancer related medication.
It is important to tell your therapist about your cancer and its treatment. It is particularly important to provide as much information as possible about the location of known tumors. In general, Thai yoga therapy is done at lower pressure levels for those coping with cancer until two or three months after treatment. The therapist will particularly avoid deep pressure at cancer tumor sites. Some cancers weaken the bones so the therapist will avoid deep work in those cases.
Tell your therapist about any of the following conditions:
You may not receive deep work in this case.
If cancer has spread to the bones we need to avoid physical manipulation and deep pressure work that could result in a bone fracture.
We will provide Thai yoga therapy to breast cancer patients while on their backs, sitting, or on their side, but not on their stomach unless approved by their doctor.
Indicate areas where the skin has been disturbed so your therapist may exercise caution. If you have flu-like symptoms, we advise against receiving Thai yoga therapy. People undergoing chemotherapy may have a decrease in red and white blood cells, so with deep massage, there is a risk of bruising. Indicate any area of nerve damage – we will avoid deep pressure and focus work in those areas. At least one source says to avoid deep massage after any chemotherapy.
Be aware that patients with low platelet counts or who are taking blood thinners may be bruised by Thai yoga therapy.
If you have Lymphedema its condition can worsen if certain parts of the body are vigorously worked. If you have had Lymph node removal, the removal areas may only be worked lightly or not at all.
Any areas that have open wounds or are bruised cannot receive work.
Treated areas may not receive work and some authorities say not to receive massage while undergoing this therapy because it can further tax the body.
It is important to check with your physician before receiving Thai yoga therapy if you have a medical condition, are taking medications, or have any undiagnosed or unexplained symptoms. Thai yoga therapy is more likely to make an existing condition worse than to cause a new problem.
For your safety, you must fill out our medical history form completely and accurately indicating past and present conditions, and current medications. Keep your therapist updated about any changes in your health. In some cases, we will recommend against receiving therapy or require you to obtain clearance from a medical professional.
You are in complete control of your session and if you feel ill or pain at any time then notify your therapist immediately and determine either the therapist can correct the situation or you want to discontinue the therapy.
You should avoid Thai yoga therapy if you have:
Thai Yoga therapy may be able to be performed with caution after discussion with your therapist of the following conditions:
Fracture, open wound, infection or tumor – work may not be performed in the affected area
History of heart failure
Post surgery – we will not work the lower legs
Pregnancy or breastfeeding
During the session, tell the therapist if the pressure is too strong or if an area is uncomfortable to work on.
Deep tissue work uses strong pressure to break up knots and adhesions deep below the skin. This work may result in temporary muscle soreness similar to a workout and any pain that follows is normally relieved within a few days. An occasional side effect of a professional therapy is an increase in soreness or discomfort, slight bruising, and in rare cases a headache or feeling of fatigue.
Proper hydration after a therapy is important to minimize potential side effects. We recommend drinking at least eight glasses of 8-ounces of water on days that you receive therapy – that is just less than 2 liters.