Experiencing something for the first time can be fascinating, especially when it is a truly positive event. This was 2016 and my first massage, ever!
Sarah pulled up on her motorcycle one morning in front of our mountainside, ocean-view Treehouse in Costa Rica and introduced herself to Jeanne and I. We had booked this massage, actually a Thai massage, with her just the day before. We set up for this event on the topmost level of our Treehouse which we call the meditation deck. The view there in all four directions is absolutely incredible – mountains, valleys, forest and the beautiful, warm, blue Pacific Ocean in the distance to the west. I often jokingly refer this to as a “million dollar view”. The furniture at this level consists of the utmost in simplicity – two hammocks and a comfortable bench – great spot for enjoying a glass of wine while viewing the spectacular sunsets over the ocean.
What is today called “Thai massage” or “Thai yoga massage” is an ancient healing system combining acupressure, Indian Ayurvedic principles, and assisted yoga postures
Traditional Thai massage uses no oils or lotions. The recipient remains clothed during a treatment. There is constant body contact between the giver and receiver, but rather than rubbing on muscles, the body is compressed, pulled, stretched and rocked.The recipient of the massage wears loose, comfortable clothing and lies on a mat or firm mattress on the floor. In Thailand the massage is often given to a group of a dozen or so subjects receiving massage simultaneously in the same large room. The true ancient style of the massage requires that the massage be performed solo with just the giver and receiver. The receiver will be positioned in a variety of yoga-like positions during the course of the massage, that is also combined with deep static and rhythmic pressures.
The massage generally follows designated lines (“sen”) in the body. The legs and feet of the giver can be used to position the body or limbs of the recipient. In other positions, hands fix the body, while the feet do the massaging. A full Thai massage session typically lasts two hours or more and includes rhythmic pressing and stretching of the entire body. This may include pulling fingers, toes, ears, cracking knuckles, walking on the recipient’s back, and moving the recipient’s body into many different positions. There is a standard procedure and rhythm to the massage, which the giver will adjust to fit the receiver.
Contrary to the “ladies first” rule, I was first up. It was a most incredible experience. Jeanne followed after and she loved it as well. We all enjoyed some really good conversations. If anyone else is interested, we both highly recommend Sarah.
Like this, Jeanne and I have had many very unique experiences at this out-of-the-box retreat. I am at this moment remembering the piano concert we hosted at our Treehouse
years ago – with the riveting live piano music of Gershwin drifting through the house and forest trees. However, that is another story for another time.