Benefits of Thai Yoga Massage. From the intuitive act of healing to scientific research.

Thai Yoga Massage is part of Traditional Thai Medicine and has served local communities in treating various ailments since ancient times. Initially, it emerged from the intuitive applied-pressure practices of indigenous cultures in pre-modern Thailand (Siam), and then it assimilated cultural influences from India and China. It was also time-tested, matured, refined and handled from generation to generation (from masters to disciples), scrupulously preserved in Buddhist temples, and eventually gifted to the rest of the world. With such a long history of evolution, in the 90s, devoted professionals like Dr C. Pierce Salguero and David Roylance introduced this art of healing to western societies. Since then, a new wave of western practitioners of Thai Yoga Massage emerged.
Regardless of this treatment already being living proof of a great source of health and well-being in the east, some academic minds decided to apply scientific methodology to test the validity of such claims. Because the results were fascinating – scientists did a great job by paving a path to the recognition of Thai Yoga Massage as an excellent alternative treatment to various ailments and improved quality of life.

So what are the results? Researchers concluded that Thai Yoga massage has the following benefits:

Pain reductions [1] [2] [4]
Improvements in disability and perceived muscle tension [2] [4]
Increased flexibility [5] [13]
Decrease in anxiety and depression [2] [3]
Increase in functional ability [3]
Increased quality of life [3]
Reduced lower back pain (chronic, non-specific) [4]
Decreasing spasticity (has the same effect as physical therapy) [3]
Enhanced health-related physical fitness [5]
Enhanced athletic performance [6]
Decrease of lactic acid and blood glucose levels [7]
Positive effect on chronic tension-type and migraine headaches [8] [9]
Reduced psychological stress. Increased parasympathetic activity, decreased sympathetic activity [10]
Enhanced physical, emotional and mental wellbeing through improved sleep, relaxation, relief of stress and relief of muscular tension. Energising and psychological stimulation [11]
Positive effects on immunity [12]
Better balance and increased range of motion of the foot [13]
Improved behaviours in autistic children [14]


  1. Keattichai Keeratitanont, Mark P Jensen, Uraiwan Chatchawan, Paradee Auvichayapat (2015). The efficacy of traditional Thai massage for the treatment of chronic pain: A systematic review. PubMed, National Library of Medicine.
  2. Vitsarut Buttagat, Wichai Eungpinichpong, Uraiwon Chatchawan, Preeda Arayawichanon (2011). Therapeutic effects of traditional Thai massage on pain, muscle tension and anxiety in patients with scapulocostal syndrome: a randomized single-blinded pilot study. PubMed, National Library of Medicine.
  3. Thanitta Thanakiatpinyo, Supakij Suwannatrai, Ueamphon Suwannatrai, Phanitanong Khumkaew, Dokmai Wiwattamongkol, Manmas Vannabhum, Somluck Pianmanakit, Vilai Kuptniratsaikul (2014). The efficacy of traditional Thai massage in decreasing spasticity in elderly stroke patients. PubMed, National Library of Medicine.
  4. Chantip Juntakarn, MA, Thavat Prasartritha, MD, and Prapoj Petrakard, MD (2017). The Effectiveness of Thai Massage and Joint Mobilization – PMC. PubMed, National Library of Medicine.
  5. Chuenjid Kongkaew, Parinya Lertsinthai, Katechan Jampachaisri, Pajaree Mongkhon, Peerapong Meesomperm, Kunwarang Kornkaew, Phichamon Malaiwong (2018). The Effects of Thai Yoga on Physical Fitness: A Meta-Analysis of Randomized Control Trials. PubMed. National Library of Medicine.
  6. Chanawong Hongsuwan, Wichai Eungpinichpong, Uraiwan Chatchawan, Junichiro Yamauchi (2015). Effects of Thai massage on physical fitness in soccer players. PubMed, National Library of Medicine.
  7. Wulan Fitri Utami, Nurkholis Nurkholis, Edy Mintarto (Jun 2017). The Effect of Thai Massage and Sport Massage on Decreasing Low Acids and Blood Glucose. The Effect of Thai Massage and Sport Massage on Decreasing Low Acids and Blood Glucose. Journal of physical education health and sport.
  8. Uraiwan Chatchawan, Wichai Eungpinichpong, Suparat Sooktho, Somsak Tiamkao, Junichiro Yamauchi (2014). Effects of Thai traditional massage on pressure pain threshold and headache intensity in patients with chronic tension-type and migraine headaches. PubMed, National Library of Medicine.
  9. Peerada Damapong, Naowarat Kanchanakhan, Wichai Eungpinichpong, Prasobsook Putthapitak, Pongmada Damapong (2015). A Randomized Controlled Trial on the Effectiveness of Court-Type Traditional Thai Massage versus Amitriptyline in Patients with Chronic Tension-Type Headache. PubMed, National Library of Medicine.
  10. Thanarat Sripongngam, Wichai Eungpinichpong, Dhavee Sirivongs, Jaturat Kanpittaya, Kamonwan Tangvoraphonkchai, Sutin Chanaboon (2015). Immediate Effects of Traditional Thai Massage on Psychological Stress as Indicated by Salivary Alpha-Amylase Levels in Healthy Persons. PubMed, National Library of Medicine.
  11. Alasdair MacSween, Susan Lorrimer, Paul van Schaik, Marie Holmes and Anna van Hersch (2018) A randomised crossover trial comparing Thai and Swedish massage for fatigue and depleted energy. Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies, Volume 22, Issue 3, July 2018, Pages 817-828.
  12. Kanda Sornkayasit, Amonrat Jumnainsong, Wisitsak Phoksawat, Wichai Eungpinichpong, Chanvit Leelayuwat (2021). Traditional Thai Massage Promoted Immunity in the Elderly via Attenuation of Senescent CD4+ T Cell Subsets: A

Published by Paulius Savickas

Yoga and Meditation teacher, Thai Yoga massage therapist, Pranic healer

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