Have You Tried Thai Massage?

by Jessica Mishra on March 15, 2012

Have you ever had a Thai massage? I had my first experience today. Last week there was an amazing Groupon deal for a super cheap 1-hour Thai massage not too far from my house. Of course I say cheap, but then my friend in Thailand reminded me that he gets the same massage for $4/hour. Anyhow, as I don’t have any travel plans to Thailand soon, I grabbed it up and booked my appointment. As a health coach, I am always eager to try different modalities that benefit health and healing.

This was quite a treat. I hopped off the bus in Fisherman’s Wharf and arrived at Project Zen (located at Bay between Powell and Mason). Not too fancy on the outside, but lovely and serene on the inside. What better thing to do on a rainy day then drink delicious licorice mint tea (their own special blend) and get a massage.

My massage therapist, a woman named Luka, was friendly and warm. I was escorted back to the massage “room”. This was basically a curtained-in area with a comfortable mat on the floor. Even though there were no walls, it still felt private and was a very relaxing environment. I was asked to change into a t-shirt and pants that they provided. I would best describe the pants as capri scrub pants. They are a bit over-sized (I think 3 of me would fit in there) but there is a drawstring to tie them up.

The massage began with me laying face down on the mat (with the same little face donut that most massage tables have). I quickly learned that this would not be your traditional massage involving my mostly lying there while someone pokes and prods at my muscles. The first part involved stretching my legs in different frog-like positions while she applied pressure to strategic pressure points. Several times throughout the massage there was stretching and moving of my limbs before pressure was applied. It was great, kind of like getting a little yoga with your massage.

I mentioned that my right shoulder and neck were a problem area so she went to town with what I think was her elbow, hitting the exact right points. I know because it was a bit painful. This was definitely a pain that I know to be very therapeutic, and the knots in my shoulder needed a good “talking” to. She mentioned I should come back for some deep tissue massage targeted directly at my shoulder. She said it would really help to heal my shoulder over time. I agreed and will be booking my next appointment very soon.

The massage got really interesting on the other side (I was asked to roll over about halfway through). She did a great hip opening move with me where she lifted up my leg, crossed it over the other side of my body, and then applied firm pressure. This move, paired with some deep breaths, definitely helped to open up my usually stiff hips. The most active part was when she sort of twisted me up and over into a little ball and I heard my back pop several times. There was also a time where it was almost like she was about to pick me up by my arms while I grabbed on to hers. I heard several more pops, and it felt as if all my vertebrae were aligned.

In short, I loved all the movement, stretching, and therapeutic pressure that was applied. This is not your vanilla variety of massage, but I highly recommend it. If you visit Project Zen, definitely ask for Luka. She was amazing!

Anyone out there tried Thai massage? How was your experience?

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Massage Deals the main ones July 13, 2012 at 2:26 am

I have to be careful on what I drink. Caffeinated drinks and milk give me acid reflux, and water gets boring. Just wondering if anyone has any recommendations on some good Day Spa Deals.

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