Thai Yoga Massage and The Upper Body

by | Mar 31, 2016

Human touch is a powerful thing. If you’ve ever been to the London Institute of Thai Yoga Massage, the soundtrack of blissful ‘Oohs’ and ‘Aahs’ that hang in the air is testament to this.

Even the slightest touch at the right time can make a person feel better in an instant. But what about when we need a little bit more? When we need a touch that goes deeper, a massage that really hits the spot by someone who knows what they’re doing?

It sounds intense, doesn’t it? And yet, physically, Thai Yoga Massage takes almost no effort from the practitioner or the recipient; a lean here and the movement of a limb there is all it takes to provoke those ‘Oohs’ and ‘Aahs’ that tell us it’s working.

The Upper Body

For most people, the upper body is the area which holds most tension and stress. In our experience, it’s also the area of the body that the majority of people would choose to have massaged or touched, if asked. This has a lot to do with our sedentary lifestyles. We sit in traffic with our shoulders rolled forward, we look down at our phones and tablets stuck in one position, we sit for long periods of time in front of a computer, at meetings or watching TV. It’s not surprising that this area causes so much pain/restriction of movement for so many people.

How Thai Yoga Massage Can Help

If you have soreness or restriction in the upper body, direct work on these areas will feel great, stretching and coaxing movement back into the soft tissues, helping getting the joints moving through all ranges of motion. There’s a reason why Thai yoga massage is known as lazy person’s yoga – it’s more than a massage but requires less effort than more traditional yoga methods. In fact, all around the head, neck and shoulders are specific acupressure points that can be stimulated for restriction in movement, headaches and to release shoulder tension. The acupressure points are similar to myofascial trigger points and the myofascial lines are similar to the Sen.

Energy Lines

The Sen form the theoretical basis of Thai massage theory. They are invisible energy lines, that run from the abdomen out to the extremities. Because they are mostly whole body lines (think tips of toes to forehead), a Thai practitioner will often massage the opposite end of the body rather than the direct source of the pain or restriction to ensure a longer-lasting effect.

Thai Yoga Massage Methods

We incorporate many different methods of touch and movements into our sessions: we stretch, we press, we rock and we apply traction and articulate. We use our feet, our knees, elbows, shins, forearms and thumbs – in short, there’s never a dull moment at the London Institute of Thai Yoga Massage. Part of the process is also about teaching practitioners to think globally about the body – although we might be working around the head or neck, we’ll be aware of fascial continuity and the mapping of energy lines. The effects of massaging around the front and back of the neck, for example, can reach to the internal organs, hips, hamstrings and right down to the tips of the toes – causing not so much ‘Oohing’ and ‘Aahing’ as before, but more dribbling and snoring as the recipient embraces a full state of relaxation.

Thai Massage Workshop for the Upper Body

If any of the above has got you ‘Oohing’ and ‘Aahing’ about the possibilities of such techniques, you might be interested to know that we’ll be running a short but (always) sweet mini-workshop sharing these and many more amazing Thai yoga massage methods, to help melt away tension in the upper body. This short session is for all levels, whether new to massage or not, and will be held on Saturday 23rd April from 2.30-5pm.

Take a look at the short video below for a taste of some of the movements you’ll learn at The Upper Body Workshop.

Thai Massage for Release of Tension in the Upper Body

April 23rd 2.30pm – 5pm

For more information email or call 07885 858 579. To book call 0207 881 0728 or 07834 861 991 or email