Traditional Thai massage was developed in ancient times when Thailand was known throughout the civilized world as Siam. Merchant ships sailed all over the orient then, especially to India and China to exchange goods as well as culture and medical know-how. Therefore, it is not surprising to learn that Thai Traditional massage is a mix of Indian and Chinese practices as well as the influence from other Asian countries.
Originally, traditional Thai massage was developed by Buddhas own doctor Shivago Komarpaj known in Thailand as the Father Doctor to deal with the aches and pains that monks and devotees suffered from prolonged periods of meditation.
The monks cherished the doctors teachings and orally passed his medical and spiritual knowledge on from one generation of monks to another who continually improved on it and also used its healing methods on the sick within their community.
Over time, Royal patronage followed and in 1455 a Siamese Kingdom known as Ayutthaya established a massage centre in the service of King Trailokkanat. But it was not until the reign of King Rama III in 1831 that eventually this oral tradition of medicine with its herbal cures and massage was recorded in textbooks and preserved at Wat Pho, a famous Buddhist temple in Bangkok.
Today, the traditional Thai massage is called WAT PHO and incorporates many disciplines including yogic stretches, acupressure, herbal and spa treatments and healing hands, also known as Reiki.
A Wat Pho massage normally takes place on a mat on the floor and the person being massaged will be given loose pants and a top to wear as no oil is used in the massage. The massage is not passive as in Swedish massage, so expect your body to be maneuvered and stretched in different directions. Rocking, pushing and bending is the norm but is only done within your flexible limitations. Afterwards you will feel calm and refreshed, a feeling that will last long after you have left the spa.
The following series of photographs show you what you can expect in a Wat Pho massage in the skilful hands of Khun Apple, Spa Manger and the only certified Wat Pho Thai massage expert on Koh Samui based at KANDA Asian Wellness Centre at KANDA Residences Samui.
KANDA Asian Wellness Centre located in KANDA Residences Samui at 80/32 Moo 5, Bo Phut, Surat Thani 84320, Koh Samui, Thailand.
Tel: +66 77 234 500 Email: [email protected] 5 minutes drive north of Chaweng Beach.