The Fast Lane of Thai Massage

Published | Updated August 14, 2019

Monk crossing the street in Bangkok's Chinatown

We want a lot, we want it cheap, we want it all, and—we want it now! Living “the fast lane” has increasingly become the mantra of contemporary lifestyle.

We see it happening in our societies, economies, communications, culinary and nutritional habits, and we see it in the way courses, workshops, and studies are offered.

Not so very long ago, I visited a presentation about a variety of Thai Massage courses and workshops. Education offered of three, two, or even one day, where the spokesman claimed one “would change radically,” “could learn everything there’s to learn,” and having finished the courses “one wouldn’t need a teacher any longer.”

And moreover, he said― “everything is very simple,” “for everybody,” “doesn’t take much time,” and “hardly takes any effort.”

Tempting, isn’t it?

Of course, there’s nothing wrong with a short Thai Massage course or workshop giving students the opportunity to get acquainted with the modality. Or, giving experienced practitioners the chance to share or refresh their skills and knowledge, or offering them a one-day specialized workshop.

But if one seriously wants to learn Thai Massage, one should certainly take time. And lots of time to practice regularly if one wants to become skilled finally. By offering shorter and shorter courses to beginners and promising them they will be competent practitioners afterwards, we corrupt Thai Massage and more over— we corrupt ourselves.

By claiming “it’s easy,” “that everybody can do it,” and “that we can learn it fast,” we in fact lie to our future students. We lie to the oath we took when we became Thai Massage masseurs and later on— teachers.

Sure, I understand… to attract new students and make a reasonable living, the fast lane seems to tempt, maybe even “forces,” some schools and teachers to play a “false fiddle.” The market asks and educators provide!

Yet to make my point clearly, I’d like to end this article with a quote from Hamilton Holt:

Nothing worthwhile comes easily. Half effort does not produce half results. It produces no results. Work, continuous work and hard work, is the only way to accomplish results that last.

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