Table Thai massage is an ancient form of bodywork that gently releases tension from the body, allowing for a greater sense of relaxation and restoration. Bellevue Club masseuse Amber Maurer offers insight into the transformative massage practice and how it can benefit you.
Reflections magazine: What is table Thai massage?
Amber Maurer: Table Thai massage is similar to sports massage and can be as effective as a deep tissue massage. The majority of our clients are extremely active in their everyday lives, so incorporating table Thai massage into what we offer for bodywork is an excellent fit to help clients achieve relaxation, increase proprioceptivity and improve flexibility.
RM: Can you explain proprioceptivity?
AM: Proprioceptivity is the awareness of posture, movement, changes in equilibrium and knowledge of position, weight and resistance of objects as they relate to the body. When people acquire more proprioceptivity, the result is that they become more aware of their body, specifically where they hold tension.
RM: What kind of experience can a person new to table Thai massage expect?
AM: They can expect to check out of their mind and into their body as if they were going into a yoga class. The client, instead of actively stretching, will receive what we like to call a lazy man’s yoga session. Clients can expect to experience muscle compression, joint mobilization and acupressure. In this way, table Thai massage is both relaxing and energizing.
RM: Can you explain a little more about acupressure?
AM: Acupressure is the specific technique for applying pressure to the body to create channels for healing energy to circulate in all parts of the body. It opens up energy pathways via the nervous system. It energizes the physical, emotional and mental aspects of the client.
RM: You call it lazy man’s yoga; can someone who has never done yoga enjoy this?
AM: Clients who haven’t yet ventured into a yoga studio will be able to achieve just as many benefits as those who are yogis. Clients will most likely leave feeling inspired to take a yoga class for the first time.
RM: How many sessions are recommended?
AM: Table Thai massage is similar to all other massage bodywork; it’s recommended for both preventive and restorative treatments. You can’t ever have too much massage. Listen to your body, discuss a plan with your massage therapist and start reaping the benefits of consistent, quality massage.
RM: Do you recommend table Thai Massage for people with injuries?
AM: Table Thai massage is suitable for most injuries. Since the stretches can be done in many different positions on the table, it’s very accommodating. But please always communicate an illness or injury with your massage therapist before beginning your session.
RM: How do you recommend clients prepare for their first session?
AM: Wear loose or stretchy, comfortable clothes. Workout clothes are appropriate. No oil is applied, and the session will be performed fully clothed. For an added benefit, spend 5 to 10 minutes in the sauna to warm up your body, or come post workout and shower for your session and you will be warmed up and ready to stretch your muscles. Always remember to hydrate before and after massage sessions.