What Is Nuad Boran? | A Sheep In Wolves’ Clothing

Published: Aug 28, 2015 | Updated: Sep 6, 2022

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Statue at Wat Pho temple grounds in Bangkok

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In Thailand, Thai Traditional Massage is, among other things, called Nuad Thai (Thai Massage) or Nuad Boran (Ancient Massage), and in fact, Thai Massage is all about healing. But then, what exactly is it that Thai Massage is supposed to heal?

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In the context of Thai Traditional Medicine there are three features to be recognized: Body, Citta (emotions, spirit and mind), and Energy. Although different in appearance, I consider these aspects only to be different ways of expressing a state of being.

Now, people can have a physical injury or disability. People can be stressed out, feel low-energy, or stiff, or depressed, or insecure, or imbalanced. These are states of being we generally consider negative. What we (try to) do with Thai Massage, is to alleviate or to undo these discomforts. We try to heal. With touch. With talks. With smiles. With massage. With stretches. With Yoga postures. With realignment.

To us, Thai Massage practitioners, it doesn’t really matter if the client’s problems have a physical, emotional, mental or energetic background — they’re very often interrelated. No hard boundaries there. We work with our body and our intention — and with, and through the body of our clients in order to reactivate their natural self-healing potential. Because we believe that a human being can heal him or herself.

We try to break through. Through real or imagined barriers and blocks, we try to “break” resistance in order to let our clients clear their discomforts, disorders and imbalances by stimulating the free flow of life-energy, nutrition and… self-love, helping their bodies to work to its fullest capacity.

I admit, we Thai Massage practitioners are a bit like sheep in wolves’ clothing though — we bite with a smile! As the saying goes: no pain, no gain! Well, good pain, that is.


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