What Thai Massage Is…

Published | Updated October 1, 2018
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Reusi Datton statue at Wat Pho temple grounds in Bangkok
IMAGE BY HELISSA GRUNDEMANN

It’s hard to say what it really is.

Almost every practitioner describes it differently—for instance, one talks about energy work, releasing blocks and so on, the other talks about muscle stretching, an ancient healing tradition, improving blood circulation, or undoing knots and tangles, or maybe… all of that.

Just examples by the way—there are in fact many ways of describing and explaining what Thai Massage is. And when you look at the books and video clips of Thai Massage sessions, you will notice a vast variety of “doing the art.” A vast array of “styles.” For a layman it’s hard to know what Thai Massage really is. Or even what it’s supposed to be.

But does it matter?

I don’t know really. But I do know it mattered to me. I often witnessed sessions where I couldn’t possibly identify with. Those sessions were not “wrong,” but they just didn’t appeal to me. There were huge differences with the way I used to practice Thai Massage.

But okay, you see, “those practitioners” have clients also. And most probably, pretty satisfied ones. So, who am I to say Thai Massage is like this or like that? I don’t think I have the right to do so. Or even the knowledge. What it is, is what you make of it. Anyway, that’s how it looks like nowadays.

But there was always something nagging inside of me. I don’t know what it was exactly. Maybe I still had the feeling that there was something called “authentic Thai Massage” or “real Thai Massage.” The real thing. And I suppose that’s why I could never stop looking for it.


Article Categories: Thai Massage Practitioner