INDIA — AYURVEDIQUE MASSAGE
The Ayurvedic massage takes its roots from Ayurveda, an ancient Indian medicine. It’s based on the synergy between three elements called ‘doshas’: water ‘vata’, air ‘kapha’ and fire ‘pitta’ constitute the vital energies influencing human personality. Harmony between those elements brings inner wellbeing and spiritual balance.
The massage is delivered using essential oils applied directly on the skin, pressures and frictions applied on the 107 vital points spread out throughout the whole body. It is a soft massage that reduces stress, distributes energy, optimizes the blood flow and helps strengthen the immune and nervous systems.
Where to get it? Ananda in the Himalayas
THAILAND — THAI MASSAGE
True therapy against physical tensions and negative emotions, the Thai massage comes from the antique Chinese medicine, and mixes different techniques such as reflexology, stretching, yoga, acupressure and muscle kneading.
This massage is realized lying down on a mat, wearing loose clothes, and works on the whole body to make the energy circulate. It intensifies on the legs to open the joints and evacuate all form of tension cumulated by the body. It is well known for its therapeutic virtues and especially for relieving back pain. If you don’t like dynamic and vigorous massages, then Thai massage is not advised.
Where to get it? Banyan Tree Spa Sanctuary, Phuket
HAWAII — LOMI-LOMI MASSAGE
Also called the Hawaiian massage, it is a ritual of renewal that aims to calm, invigorate, purify and nourish the body, which technique is unique to each therapist and is passed down from generation to generation by the kupuna (the elder).
Relaxing, harmonizing and stimulating at the same time, the Lomi-Lomi massage is delivered using the hands, forearms, fingertips and elbows, with Hawaiian songs in the background. The body is coated with soft essential oils, massaged, wrapped and fondled with long movements.
Where to get it? Four Seasons Hualalai, Hawaii
JAPAN — SHIATSU MASSAGE
Asian traditional medicine is behind Shiatsu massage, which method has been adapted by Japanese who gave it its name, literally meaning “fingers pressure”. The session is based on the principle of energetic flow and aims to eliminate all blockages in order to liberate energy, letting the body find stability and health.
The masseur realizes pressures more or less strong on the places that need to be treated, which intensity varies with the type of problem. The client wears clothes and the massage can be received while sitting or lying down on a mat. It is an intense experience, which in certain cases can be a bit painful, but always ends with a resting moment.
Where to get it? Gora Kadan, Hakone
MOROCCO — ORIENTAL MASSAGE
Originally from Maghreb, this traditional massage works on the whole body, using warm oil and especially insists on cleaning the tissues in order to eliminate all toxins as well as the points of tension to attenuate muscular aches and procure a deep peaceful sensation.
The massage is preceded by a dynamic exfoliation, usually using sugar or honey, which cleans the skin and eliminates the dead cells, right before a hammam or steam bath to soothe the skin and muscles. The massage is then delivered lying down in a incense-perfumed room, the body is coated with rich argan oil and rubbed with deep and gentle movements.
Where to get it? La Mamounia, Marrakech