A personal story

So this is a personal story. Something that happened to us today. We like to share it hoping it can help you and others.

Especially nowadays in this crazy times we live in. We all experience stress at some level. We too have stress. And we did have stress a lot today. Not just normal stress. No so much stress that we were screaming to each other while our kids were watching.

Not nice

Not nice at all.

We were doing it all wrong while we forgot 1 very important thing! It is not about the amount of stress you have how stressed you feel, it is about your actions, what you do to cope with the stress or how you can diminish our stress.

Today, while being so stressed we forgot a very essential knowledge that we have. The knowledge how we can decrease this stress immediately, without medications.

We like to share what happed to us and how we were able to change our stress, so hopefully we can help others who are stressed.

What we did wrong

So here is what we did wrong:

We watched the news and checked our iphones every couple of minutes. So wrong… the news is so depressing these days. It is way better to just check the news once a day on a set time and the rest of the time live your life…

We tried to teach our kids from home (as most parents nowadays are bound to do so) while we were trying to work at home at the same time.

We became very worried about our loved ones, our families in the Netherlands, Andorra and Spain just because we heard terrible stories, but we had not even talked to them ourselves that same day.

My iPhone broke, all my pictures, videos, all data cannot be recovered due to what they called a software problem, and I got so stressed about that, that even the kids started to think that that was the worst that could happen in the world.

We were stressed, our kids started to fight about a toy they both wanted to play with.

Screaming

And then… we were screaming to each other about something so unimportant I don’t even know what it was about.

Anyway, we became super stressed and angry and at one moment I got a clever idea: I told Manel to lay down so I could massage him. Well, of course he did not feel like getting a massage from someone who was screaming at him and being super stressed. I begged him, and he gave in.

Wow…

I was astonished what happened in just a couple of minutes…

While starting the massage my muscles became softer, my head became clean, my breath became slower. Within some minutes I felt that I was in total meditation giving Manel the massage. I glanced to him and saw that he looked super relaxed himself as well. Our daughter was laying next to him and started to smile.

Of course I knew what massage can do. How it can relax you, we see that in all our lessons and treatments for many years, but we both just forgot about that in the heat of the moment.

Tell everyone

Our 8-year-old daughter immediately reacted by saying: ‘You should tell the whole world how massage can make you so relaxed. So all parents can be relaxed because of massage. Shall I write it down on our window so people can read it in the street, or better put it on Internet so everyone knows.’

So here we are with our story!

But now, let’s explain it in a scientific way, how stress works:

What happens in your body during stress?

When you feel threatened, your nervous system responds immediately by releasing a flood of stress hormones, including cortisol and adrenaline. These stress hormones awaken the body for emergency action. Your heart pounds faster, muscles tighten, blood pressure rises, breath quickens and your senses become sharper.

Fight or flight?

These stress hormones, cortisol, and adrenaline are very good when you need them. It is amazing that in a split second we can release these hormones in our body to become more alert. In the so-called ‘fight or flight’ situation.

This is a moment in which you need to decide quickly if you need to escape (flight) or if you need to take action (fight) in a dangerous situation. It does not have to be so dramatic, your body also releases these hormones in the case you need to be more alert, like for an exam.

Good stress

There is good stress and bad stress. Good stress is stress that helps you to reach your goal. To help you to save your life for example, as we explained the ‘fight or flight’ situation.

Bad stress

On the other hand, there is bad stress. The bad stress is when you keep these levels of cortisol in your body in your bloodstream for a longer period during the day. Being stressed a couple of hours a day is very harmful to your body.

How to de-stress?

So in short: You need cortisol in your body to be alert or when you are in a ‘fight or flight’ situation. However, stress for a longer period is bad for your body. So what do you need to do to when you are stressed, to de-stress? Well, obviously you need to decrease the cortisol in your body.

Lowering cortisol

The best to lower your cortisol level in your body is to improve the blood circulation. You can do that by exercise or massage. Both improve your blood circulation.

Too tired to exercise?

However, many people who are stressed are also tired. They don’t feel like doing exercise. Therefore a massage treatment is a very good option. By massage, you also improve your blood circulation, and it is a passive form of exercise. You don’t have to do much. It is the masseur who is actually doing the sports to you.

How does massage reduce stress?

When receiving an acupressure massage treatment, the acupressure you receive is working on the 12 systems of your body. Also the endocrine system, the hormone system. By receiving a massage, your blood circulation improves.

Endorphins

The blood can filter the cortisol out of your body much quicker than if you did not receive a massage. And In the meantime, your hormones are being balanced due to the acupressure you feel when you get a massage. Your body is releasing instantly what we call happy hormones, like endorphins, dopamine, and serotonin. And what we call stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline are reduced by massage.

Are you stressed?

So do you feel stressed? Or do you know someone who is stressed? Please recommend them a massage, if they can.

Stay safe, healthy and happy! We are in this together!

Create a stress-free day,

Manel & Nicole

Massage School ITM Thai Hand Amsterdam

PS:

Whenever you are ready, here are 6 ways how we can help you becoming happier, healthier and stress-free by massage:

1. We made 7 free massage videos for you, so you can massage your loved ones at home, without taking any course. You can check them out here on Youtube.

You can just follow us and we keep you updated with more free stuff.

2. All our massage courses are online, so you can start today. So if you were thinking about following a massage course, this is the best time to start. And we like to help you, so if later on you like to study the course in our school, we deduct to you the price you paid for the online course. Just send us an email if you are interested and we send you all the info.

3. If you did not yet register for our Free Starterskit, you can do that on our website. We then send you the free videos directly, plus we have a great offer after you register.

4. The Thai yoga lessons (Rue Si Datton) are given privately online at the moment, by our teacher Miguel from Madrid. You can register if you like to learn these methods traditional Thai Therapists use to improve their own health, plus how they advice their clients to recover from injury. Just send us an email if you are interested and we send you all the info.

5. Life Balance lessons are soon being given online, so you can still join these Thai yoga massage classes from your own house. We keep you updated! Just send us an email if you are interested and we send you all the info.

6. We deliver massage mats to your home. Just send us an email if you are interested and we send you all the info.

PS: Do you know others who like to know about how to reduce stress immediately without medication? Feel free to share this post by clicking on the Social Media link below

How are you doing in this difficult time?

We hope you are healthy and trying to get something positive out of this whole situation. Right now it might be feeling like you are in a crisis. Well, to be honest it has been a hard two weeks for us as well. But we now can see the positive side of the situation. More about that later…

First…

For most of us our lives changed a lot in the last weeks. This is what happened to us. Recognizable?

The birthday wish…

On the 14th of March we were celebrating our daughters 8 year old birthday, just with the family. We played soccer in the park, the whole family, inclusive my 70 plus parents. We had fun. We talked about the terrible situation in other countries and hoped it did not spread more and soon would be over.

That evening, when I brought my daughter to bed she said: ‘Mom I loved all the presents but I actually did not want presents, you and daddy work so hard, I want more time with the four of us. That is my best present!’. We made a plan to do more together!

However, the next day in the Netherlands everything changed.

Our kids could not go to school anymore… we had to teach them full-time. While we both have full-time jobs. That started off as a bit of a challenge. We work when the kids are in bed, or we involve them in our massage online teachings. We have never been so aware of how precious time is.

Our massage school had to close. Going from fully booked classes, to having to close the doors of the massage school (and still have to pay all the running costs that we have as a school). So we decided to work as hard as we can to have the massage classes online asap.

And living in the most crowded part of the whole Netherlands (according to research), it is a difficult place to be 1,5 meters distance from others. We try, and everyone is trying their best.

Plus, we became so aware of our health. I suffer from chronic bronchitis so am very thankful to be able to get a massage every day (especially massaging around the ribs, to relieve tension around the longs) from Manel. We eat healthy, add daily sport (even at home) and massage to our schedule to stay fit and without stress.

Crazy times…

We are happy to be still be able to go outside to have some fresh air, but we take our social responsibility and go outside as less as possible, just with the kids to let them run – and we run ourselves – plus going to the supermarket – online delivery is sold out… I just placed an order yesterday and we are number 18516 in line!!!! I will get an email when they can deliver our order!

However…

Despite all the horrible times due to this terrible virus, there are also positive things going on…

Total strangers on the street are waiving to each other, smiling, putting their thumbs up to each other.

The other morning I was running with the kids and total strangers wished us good health. As in many places we were clapping from our windows and balconies for the heroes working in hospitals etc to keeping us safe… wow what a feeling that was!

We have a whatsapp group in our neighborhood with total strangers (we live in the city, so you don’t know all the people in the area) who help each other.

We cherish all the good moments together. We appreciate our health.

Love…

Today Manel and I are married for 2 years… we got a lot of congratulations of people, heart warming!

Best time ever…

And yesterday our kids told us that they loved these times, being every day with mom and dad. Our daughter said: ‘Wow, my birthday wish came out! It is so nice to be together all the time.’ And our 6 year old son told us: ‘These days are the best ever! Playing all day at home.’ So sweet to hear how they see this time.

Of course we are aware of the situation and everyone has different worries. We wish you well in these difficult times! Cherish the good moments!

And before I forget… if you live in the Netherlands, the government is helping branches with financial support. However, many branches (like massage) are not listed. Tomorrow, the list will be expanded and we believe massage should be on it. And you can help! So if you have a company that is not listed yet, please check this link: https://lnkd.in/eyy4JAT And fill in the form, more info also here:

https://www.rvo.nl/subsidie-en-financieringswijzer/tegemoetkoming-schade-covid-19/signaal-ontbrekende-sbi-codes-wssl

Stay safe, healthy and happy! We are in this together!

Manel & Nicole

Massage School ITM Thai Hand Amsterdam

PS:

Whenever you are ready, here are 6 ways how we can help you becoming happier, healthier and stress-free by massage:

1. We made 7 free massage videos for you, so you can massage your loved ones at home, without taking any course. You can check them out here on Youtube.

You can just follow us and we keep you updated with more free stuff.

2. All our massage courses are online, so you can start today. So if you were thinking about following a massage course, this is the best time to start. And we like to help you, so if later on you like to study the course in our school, we deduct to you the price you paid for the online course. Just send us an email if you are interested and we send you all the info.

3. If you did not yet register for our Free Starterskit, you can do that on our website. We then send you the free videos directly, plus we have a great offer after you register.

4. The Thai yoga lessons (Rue Si Datton) are given privately online at the moment, by our teacher Miguel from Madrid. You can register if you like to learn these methods traditional Thai Therapists use to improve their own health, plus how they advice their clients to recover from injury. Just send us an email if you are interested and we send you all the info.

5. Life Balance lessons are soon being given online, so you can still join these Thai yoga massage classes from your own house. We keep you updated! Just send us an email if you are interested and we send you all the info.

6. We deliver massage mats to your home.Just send us an email if you are interested and we send you all the info.

 

 

PS: Do you know others who like to know about how massage improves the immune system? Feel free to share this post by clicking on the Social Media link below

Have you ever thought about the importance of touching? A hug as a greeting. Shaking hands. Kissing each other on the cheeks. A padding on the back.

This used to be normal. You probably touched people every day, without even noticing.

Until recently.

Everything changed.

We now have to stay 1,5 meter or 2 meters away from each other.

How does that affect us as a human being?

Well if you look scientifically, humans need touch! From research we know that new born babies are more likely to die if they don’t get touched. Very sad research by the way. But it shows, we are healthier if we are being touched.

Why is this?

Well, first let’s explain how the sense of touch works. It is a complex process, but you can say that a stimulus triggers activity in a sensory neuron. Then it travels to the part of our brain that is assigned to the proper body location.

So this is how touch works in our body.

But why is touch healthy?

Touch stimulates the brain to release endorphins. We call that happy hormones. When you get a hug, a caress, a kiss, a handshake of someone you like, your cortisol (stress hormones) decreases. Your blood pressure and heart rate can even be reduced by touch.

So touch can de-stress, relax us.

This goes for professional massages, as we always teach in our lessons. But all these positive effects you can also feel (a bit less maybe) when you receive a touch from someone.

However, everything has changed.

We are all at home. Maybe you are with a loved one? Maybe you are with your kids? Maybe you are alone?

We are in a strange situation. If you do come outside you cannot come close to others. You can not give kisses, hugs, shaking hands. We have to keep a distance of 1,5 meters or 2 meters between each other.

But humans are in need of touch.

We can decrease stress and can become healthier by touching each other. So why not try to massage each other? Even if you are not a professional massage therapist. Make yourself and your loved ones happier, healthier and stress-free by massage. And if you don’t have the opportunity to massage each other, just touch each other if you can.

Because how would it affect us in the long run if we don’t get touched anymore?

Think about it.

Have a lovely day with lots of touch, of course only if you can, and only with your house mates!

Stay safe, healthy and happy! We are in this together!

Manel & Nicole

Massage School ITM Thai Hand Amsterdam

 

 

PS: Do you know others who like to know about how massage improves the immune system? Feel free to share this post by clicking on the Social Media link below

As we are all fighting the same fight: trying not to get sick, we have been working the last days to see how we can help you improving your immune system by massage. Plus becoming more relaxed.

Even though our school is not open for face-to-face lessons. We are open online.

We know this is a very difficult time for everyone. We hope you stay safe and healthy and we like to help you.

Most of us are probably now 1 week or more at home, as millions of people nowadays are being in quarantine. Probably you notice that you move less, blood circulation therefore is not as it should be. These days working on your health has never been so important, so please keep moving as much you can to improve your immune system.

And maybe you feel stressed because of this situation. Of course you know being stressed is not good, and increases the risk of getting sick. However, we understand, many people do feel stress in the difficult situation we are in at the moment. So if you have the opportunity, please do give your loved ones while being at home a massage to relax.

We like to help you with this.

And therefore we have been working hard the last week on the following. So whenever you are ready, here are 5 ways how we can help you becoming happier, healthier and stress-free by massage:

1. We made 7 free massage videos for you, so you can massage your loved ones at home, without taking any course. You can check them out here on Youtube.

You can just follow us and we keep you updated with more free stuff.

2. All our massage courses are online, so you can start today. So if you were thinking about following a massage course, this is the best time to start. And we like to help you, so if later on you like to study the course in our school, we deduct to you the price you paid for the online course. Just send us an email if you are interested and we send you all the info.

3. If you did not yet register for our Free Starterskit, you can do that on our website. We then send you the free videos directly, plus we have a great offer after you register.

4. The Thai yoga lessons (Rue Si Datton) are given privately online at the moment, by our teacher Miguel from Madrid. You can register if you like to learn these methods traditional Thai Therapists use to improve their own health, plus how they advice their clients to recover from injury. Just send us an email if you are interested and we send you all the info.

5. Life Balance lessons are soon being given online, so you can still join these Thai yoga massage classes from your own house. We keep you updated! Just send us an email if you are interested and we send you all the info.

Stay safe, healthy and happy! We are in this together!

Manel & Nicole

Massage School ITM Thai Hand Amsterdam

PS: Do you know others who like to know about how massage improves the immune system? Feel free to share this post by clicking on the Social Media link below

We just had to make a difficult decision but we are happy to let you know we found a solution to still help you to improve your immune system at home.

Are you one of the millions of people who are usually living their normal lives, bringing kids to school, go to work, meeting people, go to the gym, do yoga, eat out or going to the supermarket… but are now staying at home? Are you taking care of yourself and your loved ones? Trying to sleep well, take extra vitamin C, being extra aware of your immune system? Plus avoiding social interaction?

Well, you are not the only one.

We too had to make the difficult decision to close the doors of the massage school in Amsterdam until 6th of April, because of the Corona virus. Despite the various hygiene measures that we have already taken lately, it still seems wiser to temporarily stop all lessons and treatments in our school. We follow the advice of the government.

We have to stay home with our kids too, who cannot go to school because the schools are closed here in the Netherlands.

However, we have many requests from people who like to book a massage treatment and our massage lessons for the coming weeks were fully booked. Especially knowing that massage improves your immune system, something so important these days.

Closing our massage location was a difficult decision because we like to help making others healthier and stress-free by massage.

As massage teachers, we are lucky that we have massage knowledge already, so we are able to give each other, plus our kids, massage treatments from home.

Since we know how well it works for us, we love to give you the same opportunity that we have. It is our mission to help as many people as we can to improve their immune system by massage. Are you joining our mission?

If you are registered for a course you directly got all the lessons online as well, so you can practice at home. We postpone the courses when everything is back to normal!

Plus if you like to register for a course, you can do so online now. If later you like to join the course in our school (when all is back to normal) we will deduct what you paid from the course, so you will get the discount.

Click here to find our online courses.

Click here to find our online workshops.

Plus… we are planning to share new materials online through social media, so you can help to make each other improving immune systems.

Create a healthy day and stay safe, greetings Nicole & Manel

International Training Massage School

ITM Thai Hand Amsterdam

PS: Some of you asked me if we sell mats, yes we do, you can buy one online and we deliver it to your house. Click here for more details.

PsPs: If you decide later to follow the course at our school when everything is back to normal, we will deduct the price you pay now for the online course. No worries!

PSPS: Do you know others who like to know about how massage improves the immune system? Feel free to share this post by clicking on the Social Media link below

We all know what eating healthy and getting enough sleep can do for your immune system. But did you know that massage treatments improve your immune system? In this article, we will explain to you how massage improves the immune system.

Fight against virusses and bacteria

Fight against viruses and bacteria

What is the immune system?

Before we show you how massage improves the immune system, let’s first talk about what the immune system actually is. When we are talking about the immune system, we talk about the system that is most involved in the capacity to fight against bacteria and diseases. This is the lymphatic system. A system of thin tubes and lymph nodes that run throughout our body. These tubes are called lymph vessels or lymphatic vessels.

Fighting against bacteria

The lymphatic system contains the immune cells – macrophages and cells group B and group T lymphocytes. Those cells are called white blood cells. And they are important when you have a virus or a bacteria inside of your body, like if you have a cold. Because these are the cells that fight against those viruses and bacteria.

white blood cells

white blood cells

The lymphatic system

Before we explain how massage improves the immune system, we need to have a bit of knowledge of anatomy. So let’s take a minute to find out how our body works…

We can consider the lymphatic system as a kind of shadow of the circulatory system. The lymph vessels branch through all parts of the body like the arteries and veins from the circulatory system that carries blood. However, the lymphatic system tubes are much finer and carry a colorless liquid called lymph.

So how does it work?

Well, as the blood circulates around the body, fluid leaks out from the blood vessels into the body tissues. This fluid carries nutrients to the cells. Plus it bathes the body tissues to form tissue fluid. The fluid then collects waste products, bacteria, and damaged cells. After the collection of waste, the fluid drains into the lymph vessels.

How massage improves the immune system

How massage improves the immune system

Filtering out bacteria

From the lymph vessels, the fluid, which now is called lymph, flows into the lymph glands. These lymph glands then filter out any bacteria and damaged cells.

From the lymph glands, the lymph moves into larger lymphatic vessels. Then the lymph follows its journey to the base of the neck (called the thoracic duct). And last but not least, this thoracic duct then empties the lymph back into the blood circulation. And the process starts all over.

Improve your immune system by massage

Improve your immune system by massage

Clean lymph

Because of all this filtering of the waste, the lymph is now cleaner. So the capacity of your immune system to fight against bacteria or viruses is stronger.

Pretty amazing system isn’t it?

Movement of lymph

So after explaining about the lymphatic system, you now understand that your white blood cells are fighting against bacteria and viruses. These white blood cells are part of the lymph.

This is what a virus looks like

This is what a virus looks like

One problem

There is only one issue….

This amazing system is only working when the lymph is moving. And lymph does not move by itself. Because lymph only moves by movement. So your body needs to move.

The secret of a good immunity system

So if only by moving your white blood cells can fight against bacteria. Then we can now say the secret of a good immune system is moving.

No motor

So why does lymph not move by itself? Well, when we take a look at the circulatory system, we see the heart. The heart that pumps the blood everywhere through our body. Within the lymphatic system, we don’t have this motor. In this lymphatic system, we don’t have a heart that pumps the lymph.

The importance of good blood circulation

Blood circulation

Breathe

The lymph only moves for example when you breathe. When you breathe in and out you move lymph. And when you walk. And when you move your arms, your legs you move lymph. In general terms, by movement, you improve the capacity of your immune system.

Or you will die

So now we know lymph needs to move because lymph needs to be filtered. Lymph also carries waste. And this waste needs to be filtered by the lymphatic nodes.

When lymph does not move, you get problems of retention of liquids. Some people get big arms or legs. You can easily get an infection. Actually, you will die when you don’t move.

Life Balance class

Life Balance class

Massage is movement

So again to improve your immune system, you need to move. So you can do sports or… you can get a massage treatment. Because massage is movement.

By the way, movement is also good for blood circulation. Because blood circulation plays a very important role in improving the capacity of the immune system. Because blood gives nutrients and oxygen to the cells.

When we talk about movement and massage, we use the technique of Traditional Thai Massage. Within Traditional Thai Massage, both masseur and receiver are moving. We use stretches. Which is movement. And we use acupressure which is also movement. By receiving this kind of massage treatment, the massage therapist is stimulating the movement of your lymph. So your immunity system improves.

stimulate movement of lymph by weekly massage

stimulate movement of lymph by weekly massage

Massage when sick?

As massage improves your immune system, you need to get massaged to improve your immune system. However, when you already have a fever, have an infection, then you should avoid massage. The best thing is to rest until you are better.

Prevent illnesses

So just get a massage treatment to improve your immune system, to prevent to get sick. And when you have been sick, you are recovered and have no fever anymore. Then you can start to receive massage treatments again to improve your immune system again.

So we hope it is clear. This was our explanation about the secret of a better immune system. Movement! So why massage improves the immune system. And why you should get a regular massage to become healthier. Take care!

Create a healthy day,

Nicole & Manel

Massage improves your health

Massage improves your health

PS:

Whenever you are ready… here are 6 ways we can help you to IMPROVE your IMMUNE SYSTEM through MASSAGE:

  1. Weekly massage by Life Balance class– Click Here
  2. Retreat – Click Here
  3. Acupressure Massage Therapy Program (Level 1 Foundation) – Click Here
  4. Thai Yoga Massage Therapy Program – Click Here
  5. Acupressure Massage Therapy Program (Level 2 Advanced) – Click Here
  6. Thai Yoga Massage Teacher Training Program – Click Here

PSPS: Do you know others who like to know about how massage improves the immune system? Feel free to share this post by clicking on the Social Media link below

Traditional Thai Yoga Massage – called Nuad Thai – has been recently added to the Unesco list of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. This list seeks to recognize things that are important to preserve for future generations.

First UN-recognized massage technique worldwide

It is the first time a massage technique has been acknowledged by the United Nations. Unesco is the United Nations’ agency for education, culture, and science.

In this article we will explain you why Nuad Thai is so important for our cultural heritage.

But first, we like to add that as the first International Training Massage School in Europe and the only certified & internationally recognized Traditional Thai Yoga Massage School in the Netherlands, we are very pleased with this great news. Being a franchise of ITM Chiang Mai – one of the best schools to learn Nuad Thai in Thailand – we have seen the benefits of traditional Thai yoga massage for our over more than 10,000 students.

Plus our lives have changed immensely since we practice Nuad Thai: we are happy and pain-free.

So what is Nuad Thai?

Teacher Training Thai Yoga Massage

Benefits

Many people don’t know, but Nuad Thai is not the typical massage you’ll find in Spa’s in the west. It is better seen as the physio therapy of the east.

The combination of stretches and deep acupressure in Nuad Thai has an amazing impact on the human tissue. Nuad Thai is used as curative and preventive. A traditional Nuad Thai treatment is the best to relieve stress and tensions in the body.

Because the level of cortisol, the hormone released by stress, decreases. In addition, your body produces more lymphocytes, a white blood cell that ensures a better immune system.

Moreover, massage has an effect on the activity of a number of genes that directly inhibit muscle inflammation – the same result that you get when taking aspirin or ibuprofen – and the muscle recovers faster from exercise.

Life Balance

How is this different than other massage techniques?

If you ever received a traditional Nuad Thai massage, you know the difference from other massages. Thai yoga massage is based on acupressure, reflexology and yoga-like stretching. It is a full body massage that is given over the clothes, on a mat and usually lasts about 1.5 hours.

Thai yoga massage

Benefits for both

Both the client as well as the masseur benefit from the massage. They both improve their flexibility through yoga-like stretches, reduce stress due to the meditative status during the massage and improve their blood circulation as they are doing exercise.

Due to the light acupressure and soft stretches – which you can deepen according to the client’s needs – this massage is accessible for everyone.

Thai Yoga Massage Therapy Program

What makes Nuad Thai so important?

This is what Unesco states: ‘Nuad Thai, traditional Thai massage is regarded as part of the art, science and culture of traditional Thai healthcare.

As a non-medicinal remedy and manual therapy, it involves bodily manipulation in which the practitioner helps re-balance the patient’s body, energy and structure to treat illnesses believed to be caused by the obstruction of energy flow along ‘sen’, lines understood to crisscross the human body.

This manipulation is intended to normalize the four body elements: earth, water, wind and fire. To open up blocked routes, Nuad Thai therapists perform a combination of manipulations using their hands, elbows, knees and feet, together with herbal hot compresses to reduce inflammation.

Presently, Nuad Thai is classified into two main types: Nuad Thai therapy and Nuad Thai for health promotion. Nuad Thai has its roots in self-care in Thai peasant society of the past; every village had massage healers whom villagers would turn to when they had muscle aches from working in the field. Over time, these experiences have evolved into a formal system of knowledge, and Nuad Thai is now an income-generating occupation.’ That is what Unesco writes on their website.

Thai yoga massage level 1 course

Life Balance

We are very honored to teach everyone interested this centuries’ old healing art. Our school has been teaching Nuad Thai in the form of online courses, retreats in Thailand, and face-to-face courses and workshops in our school in Amsterdam.

However, we often hear this question: ‘I love to receive traditional Thai yoga massage, but a good professional Nuad Thai treatment is expensive.’ And new scientific research shows that you only get the real benefit if you undergo a massage twice a week.

Affordable massage for everyone

This is why our massage school developed Life Balance classes. In these lessons you give, but also get yourself, a 45-minute deep acupressure and stretch massage by following the teacher’s instructions. For the price you pay for a yoga lesson.

Thai yoga massage lesson

Teacher Training

We are the first massage school in Europe to offer the benefits of a holistic deep acupressure massage in class-form twice a week. We believe that this can greatly improve health and we therefore developed a teacher training for those who would like to give these classes in their own yoga, massage or other schools to improve the immune system, reduce stress, fight diseases and recover faster from injuries.

It is our mission to make as many people healthier, happier and stress-free by massage.

Create a healthy, happy & stress-free day!
Nicole & Manel

PS: Whenever you are ready… here are 5 ways we can help you to make yourself and others happier, healthier and stress-free  through MASSAGE:

  1. Retreat – Click Here
  2. Acupressure Massage Therapy Program  – Click Here
  3. Thai Yoga Massage Therapy Program – Click Here
  4. Life Balance – Click Here
  5. Thai Yoga Massage Teacher Training Program – Click Here

PSPS: Do you know others who you need to know about this? Feel free to share this post by clicking on the Social Media link below.

 

How to really fight back pain? Read the real reason of back pain and how to fight it!

Back pain?

You are not the only one. Millions of people have back pain nowadays. It is one of the most common ailments for a doctor’s visit worldwide. It is the leading cause of disability and 80 % of the people will suffer from back pain once in their lives.

So you are not alone. But, what to do?

Solution?

There are also many solutions offered. But are they helping? Maybe for a short period of time, but in the long run? Do these solutions solve your back pain? Researchers say that most solutions don’t solve the problem, because they don’t treat the cause. But what can?

Here is to the real reason of back pain and how to fight it.

But first…

You are an easy target

You probably have seen ads on TV, Facebook and Instagram for back pain solutions. There are a lot of companies that are only looking at the most regular ailments and then invent products to sell. You can buy them from 20 euro to about 90 euro.

You see advertisements about back supports that you have to put on your knees to have a straighter back or a back supports that you have to wear like a bra to keep your back straight. And there are many variations.

Placebo?

These back pain supports have not been medically tested. There is no scientific proof that it works. However, tons of people are buying these products. Of course if you believe in it, it works for you like a placebo, we would also suggest to use it. But we find it sad to see that people with back problems are such an easy target to buy products they don’t really need.

The cause of your back pain

We believe it is better to see what is the cause of back pain. If you have severe back pain, please go to see your physician. However the most common back pain is lower back pain, caused by strain or tension.

Sitting

If this is your case, and you sit a lot, then we believe sitting can be the problem. Because when you sit, you don’t move. And when you don’t move, you loose muscle tone and bone mass. Because you don’t use your muscles enough.

Stress

Besides lack of movement, stress can also be a trigger for lower back pain. Being stressed or anxious leads to muscle tension by causing blood vessels to narrow. Therefore, reducing blood flow and oxygen to the body’s tissues. This leads to a build-up of waste products, which cause the muscles to spasm or contract.

Being under constant stress causes the muscles to tighten and shorten, triggering pain, often in the neck and back.

Why you feel pain

So why you feel pain? For example, when you sit a lot, you have tight hamstrings, the muscles down the back of your thigh. A tight muscle can be dense, hard and may pinch the nerve and therefore you feel pain. Maybe you can sense these hard little knots in your hamstring or lower back yourself.

When you press on it, it feels like a little ball, it is harder than the other parts of the muscle.

Flexibility

So density in the tissue of the muscle causes less blood circulation. Therefore it is important to have flexible muscles next to the spine and hamstrings, to prevent density, and so to prevent back pain.

Movement

Next time when you have back pain, move…

Try to go for a walk, do yoga or take a massage treatment. Your body needs to work on breaking the density of the tissue so it will not pinch the nerve anymore. This can be done by better blood circulation and heating, the effects you can create by massage.

Moreover, the best is to work on the flexibility of the muscles, good blood circulation, and a healthy cortisol level. With mild exercise, your body is doing all that by itself.

Painkiller or not?

And remember, of course you can take a painkiller when you have severe back pain, but it is better to look at the cause. Painkillers work only temporarily, be careful to get depended on them. And did you know, a massage works the same as a painkiller, without any side effects?

Wishing you a back pain free life!

Nicole & Manel

PS: Whenever you are ready… here are 5 ways we can help you fight your back pain through MASSAGE:

  1. Retreat – Click Here
  2. Acupressure Massage Therapy Program (Level 1 Foundation) – Click Here
  3. Thai Yoga Massage Therapy Program – Click Here
  4. Acupressure Massage Therapy Program (Level 2 Advanced) – Click Here
  5. Thai Yoga Massage Teacher Training Program – Click Here

PSPS: Do you know others who you need to know how to fight back pain? Feel free to share this post by clicking on the Social Media link below.

How to sleep better?

Do you find it difficult to fall asleep at night?

Do you recognize this too?

Your head cannot stop thinking? You move in your bed to find the right position? You decide to look at your notebook or smart phone again hoping to fall asleep soon? You see yourself scrolling through your friends Facebook and Instagram time lines and all of a sudden it is super late. You put down your smart phone or notebook and stare to the ceiling.

Frustration!

You know that your alarm clock will ring in some hours and now you are right awake.

You cannot fall asleep anymore!

Or do you wake up during the night and have difficulties falling back to sleep? Your head starts thinking too much and you cannot find the right position to fall asleep again? You look at your clock and see the time ticking away, feeling frustration that you cannot fall back to sleep?

Or maybe you wake up too early and are very tired.

Tired!

Whatever your sleeping problem is…

… you are not the only one.

Research

Just read a research that stated that almost 25% of people have sleeping problems. This research was done among people living in the Netherlands and are 25 years and above.

It is even worse… because 40% of these people say that they sleep so badly they have problems during the day. They have concentration problems, are forgetful and have a bad mood.

Sleeping drugs

Worldwide, more and more people are taking sleeping drugs, like melatonin, sleeping pills, sedating antihistamines and other over the counter sleeping aids. However, specialists say this is very risky. Not only because many people are taking these drugs for a longer period of time, so they get depended. But using sleeping aids without proper diagnoses can cause more serious problems.

Sleeping tricks

I too had difficulties falling asleep and changed some things before bed time as I read about it, which did help a bit:

– No screen time 2 hours before sleeping

– How tempting it might be, not scrolling on my phone in my bed before bed time

– Turn my alarm clock, so I cannot see the time when I wake up at night

– I made my bedroom very dark, I realized it was too light

– No caffeine after dinner time

– A light meal at dinner

– No pure chocolate in the evening (that was hard!)

– Not drinking too much water after dinner, because I always woke up to go to the toilet

Thinking

But I still was thinking too much in my bed…

So I decided to integrate some ‘thinking-time’ before bed-time. You might call it meditation, but I call it ‘thinking-time’. This is my time when I sit down, quiet, and think more than 10 minutes about the day, about things I still need or like to do, or anything that comes to mind. If needed, I write it down. And then I stop my ‘thinking-time’ so I can go to sleep clear-headed.

Waking up

So yes, this all helped, but still I woke up with digestion problems, having to go to the toilet in the middle of the night. Sometimes muscle cramps. Or even if I thought I was relaxed I still had stress in my body which kept me in a vicious circle, to being frustrated to fall back asleep.

So the most important thing that makes me do sleep well, is massage. I make sure I get at least 2 massages a week, so I am relaxed and ready to prepare myself for enough sleep. Yes, I am fortunate having a husband that is a massage therapist. But if he doesn’t have time or he is traveling I ask my kids to walk over me. Or I book a massage. I just want to be sure I am rested and relaxed.

Fighting insomnia

Maybe you now think, massage? What has that to do with sleeping? Well, actually a lot. Because massage fights insomnia; if you have difficulties falling asleep or staying asleep.

Because massage reduces digestion problems, increases serotonin (happy hormones), decreases cortisol (stress hormones) and reduces muscle cramps. How massage does that is another story. Anyway, if you have difficulties falling asleep or staying asleep just try a massage treatment to see how it works for you.

Wishing you all a good night sleep!

Nicole & Manel

PS: Whenever you are ready… here are 5 ways we can help you sleep better through MASSAGE:

  1. Retreat – Click Here
  2. Acupressure Massage Therapy Program (Level 1 Foundation) – Click Here
  3. Thai Yoga Massage Therapy Program – Click Here
  4. Acupressure Massage Therapy Program (Level 2 Advanced) – Click Here
  5. Thai Yoga Massage Teacher Training Program – Click Here

PSPS: Do you know others who you need to know how to sleep better? Feel free to share this post by clicking on the Social Media link below.

Acupressure massage history explained: From cosmology to science

What do the Old Stone Age and the Iceman have to do with acupressure massage? Well, a lot!

Because, if you want to understand the real benefits of acupressure massage, you should first understand its history. Because acupressure massage is not something new.

 

8,000 years of empiric knowledge

Actually, there are over 8000 years of empiric knowledge of acupressure massage. Based on trial and error we now use the acupressure techniques like massage therapy to prevent and cure ailments.

Old Stone Age

Imagine living about 8000 years ago. You would be living in the so-called Old Stone Age. Probably most of your days you would be gathering plants and fishing, hunting or scavenging wild animals. You would live in a small community. And if you were sick, you would go to a traditional doctor. There were no hospitals.

First acupressure tools

At that time acupressure was already used for treatment. Archaeologically research reveals that around 6000 BC long sharp bones and needles sharpened stones were used for acupressure.

The Iceman’s tattoos

If we make a time jump, there is proof of the use of acupuncture around 3300 BC. Anthropologists studied the Iceman, the so-called mummy that was found in 1991 in a glacier. The Iceman has over 61 tattoos. These tattoos were organized into 19 different groups. Each group of tattoos is a set of horizontal or vertical lines.

Joint and spinal degeneration

These tattoo groupings tend to cluster around the lower back and joints. It is very interesting to see that research reveals that these were the places where the Iceman was suffering from joint and spinal degeneration. Therefore it is believed that the tattoos served a therapeutic purpose. Researchers think that the tattoos marked locations for acupuncture or acupressure treatments. Or maybe the tattoos itself were the treatments.

 

Shamans

Years later, people who were sick would go to traditional doctors, called Shamans. In Thailand, they were called hermits, Ruetsis. They used to live in the forest, studying traditional medicine, herbs, massage and natural remedies to cure people.

Physiological problems

Archaeologically research reveals that 80% of the consults of the people who went to Ruetsis in Thailand came for physiological problems. They had headaches, back pains, stiff shoulders and pain in the arms etc. Actually the same ailments we have still nowadays.

Meridians

The acupressure massage that is still given in Thailand nowadays, was introduced in Thailand by the Buddhist monks who arrived from India during the second and third century BC. One of the few ancient written texts of the traditional Thai massage you can find nowadays in the temple of Wat Po in Bangkok.

These drawings illustrate the principles of traditional Thai medicine: that energy flows through the body along ten major channels, meridians, or sen lines. If an obstruction occurs in any of these channels it is believed that pain or disease results.

Traditional Thai medicine banned

The traditional Thai medicine, which includes traditional Thai acupressure massage was banned in the country in 1916 due to the influence of Western medicine that was introduced in Thailand by missionaries and western physicians. However traditional Thai medicine revived around 1978 when the World Health Organization (WHO) urged its member countries to include traditional medicine and medicinal plants in their primary healthcare program. Nowadays traditional Thai medicine is popular, used in hospitals in Thailand and is gaining acknowledgement around the world.

Cosmology versus physiology

For us as traditional Thai acupressure teachers and owners of the first International Training Massage School in Europe, we use the knowledge of acupressure massage in our daily lives. However, when explaining the benefits of acupressure massage to our students we add extra information.

The ocean of Chi

We can describe cosmology versus physiology. Thousands of years ago we did not have the knowledge of biology and physiology as we have now. At that time the benefits of acupressure massage were explained by the unblocking of the energy through the meridians. The energy was called Chi or Qi. And the area of the abdomen was seen as the ocean of the Chi.

Chi or blood?

When we now talk about energy, Chi or Qi, we like to describe this energy as blood circulation. How blood provides oxygen towards the millions of cells that we are made of. Red blood cells carry oxygen to the cells. Blood plasma carries nutrition. Acupressure massage also improves the movement of lymph, therefore improves your immune system. Acupressure massage increases flexibility and also nerve stimulation. Thousands of years ago they did not know how the digestion system works and why massage of the abdomen is so powerful. They did not know how stress and the level of cortisol are related.

Scientific knowledge

In those times acupressure massage was done by trial and error. We now have so much scientific knowledge that we do use the same traditional acupressure techniques. However we don’t use sharp stones, but our own body like thumbs, knees, elbow, forearm, feet or a wooden stick to give acupressure and we teach by explaining the scientific way.

Modern therapy

However, to understand the benefits of acupressure massage in a scientific way, it is important to know the cosmological way the benefits were explained thousands of years ago. And then mix that with modern therapy.

We keep on updating our knowledge on acupressure massage therapy because every now and then new research and evidence is found. It is so interesting! But one thing did not change these years: The knowledge that acupressure massage works!

We wish you a healthy, happy and stress-free day!

Nicole & Manel

PS: Whenever you are ready… here are 5 ways we can help you to become healthier and happier through MASSAGE:

  1. Retreat – Click Here
  2. Acupressure Massage Therapy Program (Level 1 Foundation) – Click Here
  3. Thai Yoga Massage Therapy Program – Click Here
  4. Acupressure Massage Therapy Program (Level 2 Advanced) – Click Here
  5. Thai Yoga Massage Teacher Training Program – Click Here

PSPS: Do you know others who you like to inspire? Feel free to share this post by clicking on the Social Media link below.