Updated: Jan 19
Over here in Australia, and in many countries really, massage is seen as a luxury and something that we really just don’t have time for. In Ayurveda however, massage is seen as an essential body maintenance tool that can, and should be done by you on a daily basis and as regularly as possible by your Ayurvedic practitioner for a full 60 minutes. A daily Abhyanga massage, if even only for 5-10 minutes, can minimise injury, decrease body pain, increase circulation, improve skin tone, improve your hair strength and quality, strengthen the sensory organs, increase longevity, release blockages within the marma or trigger points across the body and soothe, clear and restore the nervous system. It again comes down to the simple Ayurvedic philosophy that prevention is often better than the cure and really, for 5-10 minutes a day with those sorts of benefits – it’s well worth the effort.
So here is what you do. After you have completed the last 4 steps of your Morning Routine, make your way to the bathroom to which you will hopefully have one, all or some of these oils on the shelf…
For Vata body types or imbalances good oil choices would include black or standard sesame oil, almond oil or a medicated oil from your Ayurvedic practitioner.For Pitta body types or imbalances good oil choices would include coconut, grape seed oil or a medicated oil from your Ayurvedic practitioner.For Kapha body types or imbalances good oil choices would include black or standard sesame oil, almond oil or a medicated oil from your Ayurvedic practitioner.
Warm the bottle of your chosen oil in a glass or bowl of hot water. Now, rather than explaining how to complete the Abhyanga massage technique with writing, I will direct you to the fantastic step-by-step video released by Banyan Botanicals (a brilliant Ayurvedic supplier, blog and access point for great Ayurvedic tips and tricks). You can even have this video playing alongside you initially until you have the technique under wraps.
Please click here for the video link.
After the massage, you will be starting to feel pretty grounded and comfortable. Now is the time to take a warm bath or shower but please, NO hot water on the head – in Ayurvedic terms, this is poor practice for the temperature of the fluids surrounding the brain and can cause imbalance if done long term.
The only time you mustn’t do a self massage is: during pregnancy, during the full length of a menstrual cycle, over swollen or inflamed injuries, over infected or broken skin, if you are unwell with an acute condition (i.e. a cold or flu), when you have indigestion, or when you have a chronic medical condition (please consult your Doctor or Ayurvedic practitioner before undergoing self massage).
Please just give the Abhyanga massage a try – even 1-2 times a week and see how it goes. I think you will find that your mind, body and just general energy levels will strengthen. Remember your health and well being must come first – otherwise you cannot give to others and/or your life’s pursuits in your full capacity. And ultimately, that’s the aim right?
Light and love,