There’s this connection, a kind of “marriage,” between the practitioners of Yoga and those of Thai Massage.
It might be described as a delicate balance between push and pull, mutual admiration, ignorance and insight. I suppose it’s because practitioners often come from “different worlds,” meet in the middle, and are “forced” to reflect each other’s “other side.”
Anyhow — something like that.
Now, Thai Massage is often also called Thai Yoga Massage or Passive Yoga because of the Yoga-poses “executed” on the receiver. It’s exactly because of this that Thai Massage courses allure Yoga practitioners and Yoga teachers. And on the other hand, there are quite some Thai Massage practitioners doing Yoga for the same reasons.
Apart from Reusi Dat Ton (Thai Yoga), I basically don’t do Indian Yoga myself. Well, I do some exercises on occasion, some basic poses derived from out Thai Massage. But then again, I’m fairly interested in the Yoga Asanas and their workings, and I do study them. I need to know their function and benefits, but mainly from out a practitioner’s perspective, that is, I use the poses on my clients.
When it comes to doing Yoga and being a Thai Massage practitioner, it’s quite interesting what Pichest Boothumme has to say about Yoga. Practitioners often claim Pichest doesn’t exercise Yoga himself or even dislikes and discourages it. I don’t know really, but I suppose it’s because he tends to say something like : “Doing Thai Massage, no do Yoga!”
I think what Master Pichest really means is that while you are intensively practicing, studying and/or receiving Thai Massage, you preferably shouldn’t do Yoga. Or rather, be very careful and selective with doing Yoga exercises.
I tend to agree because doing Yoga and getting, studying and/or giving Thai Massage simultaneously, say at the same day, day after day, is just simply too much. It’s like doing double, triple intensive Yoga classes on one day and it clearly robs you from all your energy and over-manipulates your body. That’s my experience.
I’ve seen these 10-day Thai Massage courses where the students start and end with an hour or so of Yoga. I tell you: after four or five days they’re like Zombies. No energy, dried-up. I see no point in doing so really… although it might work out just fine for very experienced bodyworkers.
Anyway, I’m not against practicing Yoga. Certainly not. But when you’re actively in a Thai Massage training course, or practice Thai Massage very intensively with many clients each day, you should surely think twice and balance out carefully.