The Art and Benefits of Abhyanga Massage

'Abhi' means all over and 'anga' means body. Abhyanga is the Sanskrit word for massage of the body with oil. The most popular massage in Ayurveda, Abhyanga, is done on the entire body with warm, healing medicated oils, from the scalp to the soles of your feet. Oil when combined with massage strokes, is believed to promote overall health and well-being.

Abhyanga has been practiced for thousands of years. Abhyanga can be performed with the help of a massage therapist or you can do it yourself in the comfort of your home. Before doing it on your own, it is recommended to have a professional opinion as it helps to get maximum benefits for you.

Abhyanga Massage

Self-abhyanga can be practiced regularly with at least one monthly synchronized Abhyanga therapy by a qualified Panchakarma technician.

Selection of oils

Oil selection is based on individual constitution, imbalances, and influences of the season. Sesame oil and coconut oil are the oils used traditionally for daily self-abhyanga.

Coconut oil cools the system and is suitable for late spring, summer, and early fall days. It is best for pitta skin type which is sensitive and overheated.

Sesame oil warms the system and is best for late fall, winter, and early spring days. Individuals with vata skin type should use it.

Those who have kapha skin type and oily skin can use almond oil for abhyanga.

In traditional Ayurvedic oils, the carrier oil is blended with healing herbs to enhance its benefits. This mix is beneficial for a particular body type or it addresses specific imbalances.

Abhyanga Massage Steps

    • With the help of a dry brush, remove dead skin, dirt, and debris from the surface of your skin, so as to prepare the pores of the skin to receive the oils.
    • Warm the oil in a pot, meanwhile.
    • Massage your body, gently, starting from the scalp, which contains the largest number of marma points. Massage the scalp with upward strokes in small circles.

Forehead, temples, jaws, cheeks, lower lip, upper lip, and chin should be massaged with upward circular strokes. Ears and earlobes should also be massaged.

Then, from the bottom of the neck, massage should be done towards the chin, and shoulders should be massaged from inside to out, with strong circular motions on shoulder joints.

Massage the abdomen and chest in a clockwise circular motion.

For arms and legs, use long strokes and short strokes for joints. Start from the hands or feet towards shoulder or thighs.

The upper and lower parts of your hands and feet should be massaged in rhythmic strokes. Massage your sole or palm in small circular strokes with your thumb. Each toe or finger should be massaged separately.

    • Leave the oil for 5-10 minutes, for the oil to penetrate to the deepest skin layers, and also to the tissues of the internal body.
    • Remove the excess oil with a cold or cool shower, depending on the weather conditions.
    • Gently dry your body with a soft towel.

Benefits of Abhyanga

There are a host of benefits from Abhyanga. Abhyanga revitalizes the body as a whole.

    • Reduces Stress - Stress levels and heart rate are found to decrease after the Abhyanga massage. Peace of mind is obtained from Abhyanga.
    • Helps to reduce Blood Pressure - Abhyanga massage helps in lowering the blood pressure of patients who suffer from hypertension. During the massage, blood vessels expand, blood flow speedens, resistance to the arteries is reduced, and blood pressure is improved.
    • Improves skin health - The oil, used for massage, nourishes the skin, and enhances the overall appearance. Due to massage strokes, the skin blood flow increases. Wrinkles, cellulite, and scars are reduced. Skin becomes more soft and smooth and healthy. Hyperpigmentation is decreased. The texture and tone of the skin is improved.
    • Reduces muscle stiffness - Better flexibility results from Abhyanga. Muscle stiffness decreases and mobility is increased by the loosening of short, tightened muscles.
    • Promotes lymphatic drainage - Massage improves lymphedema,the swelling caused due to the accumulation of fluid in the lymphatic system on account of surgery, injury, radiation therapy, or a medical condition. Lymphatic vessels are expanded due to the physical pressure and lymph flow is promoted.

Other Benefits

  • Better vision
  • Increases energy and alertness
  • Increases physical strength
  • Delays age-related problems
  • Strengthens bodily tissues
  • Strengthens the bones and joints
  • Lubricates internal organs
  • Better and sounder sleep
  • Enhances digestion
  • Stimulates internal organs
  • Thicker, softer, and shinier hair
  • Lubricates joints
  • Improves lifespan
  • Stimulates lymph nodes
  • Abhyanga at Jeevess

    The best Abhyanga massage in Kerala is offered at Jeevess. At Jeevess, there is a whole range of different therapeutic abhyangas based on the medicated oil and techniques of massage. A qualified and trained therapist performs the massage with the help of herb-infused Ayurvedic oils that best suit your body constitution and doshas.

    Get revitalized with Abhyanga, at Jeevess.

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