Further below in this post, you’ll find a video in which I demonstrate the so-called Thai Blood Stop, which I apply on the groin area, the abdomen, on the arms near the armpit, on the wrists, and on the top of the foot near the ankle joint. I will use my knees, elbows, palms of the hands, thumbs, and feet to demonstrate different ways of performing a Blood Stop.
Blood Stops in Thai Massage are arterial compressions (also called artery compression) performed at specific locations of the body. These locations correspond with certain important acupressure points, the so-called Wind Gates, which could be considered a kind of mini-Chakras, being distribution centers for Prana (Lom Pran) through the Sen Lines.
Not only does a Blood Stop cleanses, opens, and stimulates a Wind Gate and certain Sib Sen Energy Line for better Prana Life Force throughput, it also intensely boosts the blood circulation of the receiver.
The most common location to do a Blood Stop is in the groin area, which are points that can be found along Sen Kalathari. It’s perhaps also the most easy location to apply the technique. You can use both knees to work simultaneously on the left and right leg of the receiver, you can alternate with just one knee first doing one leg and then the other, and it’s also easy to use the palm of the hands, thumbs, and elbows, as you can see in the video.
There are also some other techniques you can use to open the Wind Gates of the groin. For instance, by placing the receiver in the side position and then sit on one leg on the back of the thigh near the groin, or by using your feet (while standing) and press on the inside of the leg with the receiver in the supine position (lying on their back).
Before doing a Blood Stop you would typically try to find the correct i.e. exact (acu)pressure location by looking for the pulse of the artery with your fingers (you will see me doing that in the video). Keep in mind that Blood Stops are not held longer than about one to two minutes, and generally shorter for women than for men. Moreover, they are held for a shorter duration if the pressure location is closer to the heart or brain.
In general, you can give more pressure with the knees, elbows, and feet compared to using the hand palms or thumbs. And actually, it’s also much less tiring for the Thai Massage therapist to use the knees, elbows, or feet. Additionally, you can give more or less pressure by moderating your bodyweight (by leaning in or out) while doing the technique. You may read more about using body mechanics in our post Thai Massage Body Mechanics | Benefits and Techniques.
In any case, after releasing the pressure, the receiver will usually feel the blood suddenly flow and experience a warm glow in the limbs (legs, feet, arms, or hands).
Mind to take the contraindications for this technique seriously. You can read more about those in our post Opening the Wind Gates with Thai Massage | Blood Stops.
Here below then the video: