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What is a Balinese Massage - Benefits and Contraindications

By Mary Smith. Updated: January 16, 2017
What is a Balinese Massage - Benefits and Contraindications

One of the best remedies for relaxing your mind and body is, without doubt, a good Balinese massage. Hailing from Indonesia, particularly the exotic island of Bali that gives it its name, this traditional massage has its origins in Hinduism and Hindu related medicine mixed with some traditional Chinese medicinal therapies.

Balinese massage melts away any kind of deep tension, which leads to a state of total relaxation. Known for its exotic magic, given the profound use of perfumed essential oils, it is characterised by manual movements and pressure favouring the activation of the lymphatic system and blood circulation and simultaneously regenerating the skin. If you want to know more about how a Balinese massage is done, carefully read the following OneHowTo article. We explain all about this delightful therapy that is able to renew your body and soul.

What exactly is a Balinese massage

Glimmering light, candles, aromatic oils, incense from the Orient, soft music... The Balinese massage is known for its exoticism and its high power of relaxation. It originated in Indonesia, specifically in Bali, an island that has influenced the name, and this technique comes from traditional Indian Ayurvedic medicine with trimmings of traditional Chinese therapies. This massage not only aims to improve the body at the therapeutic level and eventually eliminate the deeper tensions of our muscle tissue, but it also seeks total relaxation of body and mind while it is used as a rite to feel more beautiful and healthy from the inside to the outside.

According to Balinese tradition, it was the goddess of beauty Lakshmi, from the Hindu mythology, with its 4 arms who taught this massage technique to the Balinese people. It is why for its implementation, manual pressure on the body is used. Also, this body therapy uses, in turn, techniques and knowledge from acupressure (finger pressure), reflexology, stretching and some yoga principles. On the other hand, the large flow of trade and commerce in spices between India and China led to the discovery of new knowledge that improved Balinese massage. The Chinese tradition incorporated therapy oils and medicinal herbs that today have exalted one of the most exotic massages.

The Balinese massage intends to apply traditional wisdom and an extreme delicate treatment to achieve relaxation and to stimulate the body into harmony. That is why it is believed that this form of massage has a high therapeutic and healing power. This is achieved by the state of relaxation, giving an effect of both physical and mental energy to anyone who undergoes such a treatment.

What is a Balinese Massage - Benefits and Contraindications - What exactly is a Balinese massage

Balinese massage benefits

As we have mentioned before, the Balinese massage is well known for the many positive effects on the person who receives such a lush treatment. These benefits include:

  • Activation of blood circulation.
  • Better lymphatic system functions and natural drainage.
  • Combats muscle and joint pain, improving mobility and muscle tone.
  • It helps to treat allergies and other respiratory problems.
  • It reduces stress and tension, thereby enhancing the heart rate.
  • It helps improve sleeping abilities, thanks to relaxation.
  • It improves concentration and memory and helps reduce headaches and migraines.
  • Calms and weakens states of anxiety and / or depression.
  • Reduces cellulite.
  • It is an optimal treatment for weight loss.

The Balinese massage has positive effects because, as indicated by the Hindu tradition, it helps to open up the energy channels, so that good energy is absorbed and the bad energy will go away. The state of total harmony is the main purpose of this therapy.

What is a Balinese Massage - Benefits and Contraindications - Balinese massage benefits

How a Balinese massage is done

To carry out this therapy, the first thing you should know is that it works in 107 anatomical points that are distributed throughout the human body. These energy points stimulate our bodies and converge our nerves, joints, bones, veins and arteries. This is where the therapist will work to achieve total relaxation. Although there are some technical variations (Urat, Sasak, Lombok...), we will focus on two variants for traditional Balinese massage.

  • First variant: Balinese massage is done on a stretcher. The forearms are used to apply pressure to the energy points. To facilitate the movements, warm oil is used.
  • Second variant: massage is performed on a futon, directly on the floor. In this variant, the massagist applies pressure with the feet. To do so, support points (bars, chairs...) are needed so the therapist can move and move the recipient's body more easily. The pressure should be average.

Whatever the chosen technique (arms or feet), the massage is done throughout the body using various manual techniques such as:

  • Palmar, knuckles or finger pressure.
  • Roces or surface rubbing.
  • Muscle stretching and twisting.
  • Kneading.
  • Foot, hand and ear reflexology.
  • Percussion and tacking.

Remember that the key pressure points are where you reach the deeper tissues to release tension. Also, as indicated by tradition, you should undergo a foot bath before starting a Balinese massage.

To help your relaxation receptors, aromatic essences and incenses are used. Infusion bags are set on the eyelids (for 10 minutes or so) to reach a state of harmony and bliss.

What is a Balinese Massage - Benefits and Contraindications - How a Balinese massage is done

Balinese massage contraindications

Before getting a Balinese massage you should consider the contraindications of this treatment. It is advisable to be cautious if:

  • You're a pregnant woman (remember that the massage is carried throughout the body and pressure points could affect the foetus).
  • You have any muscle or joint injury or any hernias.
  • If you have recently undergone an operation.
  • If you have heart problems.
  • If you are under drug treatment.

Before receiving a Balinese massage, consult a professional therapist for advice. That way you will not take any chances and you'll enjoy this wonderful treatment.

Discover other massages

If you have interested to know more about Balinese massage and want to know more about the wonderful world of physiotherapy, do not miss the following:

If you want to read similar articles to What is a Balinese Massage - Benefits and Contraindications, we recommend you visit our Beauty & Personal Care category.

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sabrina pertiwi
Traditional Balinese Massage can bring a lot of benefits to our body but make sure to consult our physician if we have an existing illness. But before I start with massage, I always tell to massage therapist that I have high blood pressure

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