It's hard to feel at your best if there's a knot forming in your back, or your shoulders are tensing up.
Yet becoming your best self is easily within reach when you can relax both your mind and body. Allowing yourself to fully relax helps your tissues rejuvenate. It paves the way for a healthy, fit and strong body. And it clears your thinking and leaves you alert.
And, since I'd been struggling to fully relax for a while, I thought it was maybe time to try something new. I would book in at Mount Maunganui's Thai Touch for a Thai massage.
“Be your best self.” It's the mantra the Thai Touch team takes seriously. The light, warm, airy ambience, the gorgeous smell of essential oils – it all began to work on me as soon as I stepped in through the front door at Thai Touch and climbed the stairs to the studio.
As I sat down and my feet slipped into the warm herbal foot bath, my stress was already melting. Warm greetings, genuine smiles and soft expressions - I knew I was in for a treat, even before I got into the massage room.
Orasa and Nigel Banks, directors of Thai Touch had explained to me what ‘be your best self' means to Thai Touch. “Thai massage therapists learn in massage school how to free up energy flow through the body. Thai massage involves both briefly sustained compressions of muscles and stretching,” says Nigel.
“It combines massage, stretching, yoga, and acupressure to create an integrated massage experience.
“Stretching improves posture and flexibility. It lengthens muscles and connective tissues, reducing the pace of degeneration associated with ageing.”
As informed people the world over increasingly focus on health and quality of life, not just length of life, I could see how releasing tension should be a priority for everyone.
After my own massage, I also understood how dramatic transformations happen in Thai Touch therapy sessions. Customers often report feeling more refreshed, relaxed and having freer movement. Small wonder that Thai massage has become routine for so many Thai Touch customers.
“Clinical studies confirm that Thai massage promotes circulation,” says Orasa.
“It energises the body, increasing stamina and fitness. It improves concentration and mood. It strengthens cardiovascular health, stabilises blood sugar and even provides relief from headaches. As one customer put it in her recent online review of Thai Touch:
‘I walked in with a migraine and walked out on cloud nine'.
Nigel says other clinical work has shown that Thai massage can be effective against a range of common chronic health conditions.
“It reduced myofascial pain and improved freedom of movement with the proverbial “frozen shoulder”. It reduced symptoms and challenges of arthritis of the knee. And a 2015 study on soccer players showed improved physical fitness following Thai massage.”
Thai message can reduce anxiety and increase relaxation – key to sustaining a healthy mind.
“Clients report feeling as though a weight has been removed from both mind and body,” says Orasa, “and Thai massage has been shown to reduce physiological indicators of stress.” With every therapy room brimming with that warm, relaxing atmosphere, it is a perfect place to escape to on a cold day.