Tense shoulders and neck are an indisposable part of many office people's lives, and sometimes even the most rigorous massage can't reach the deep troubled tissue. After all, massage therapists' fingers aren't made of steel. How much pressure can a person's fingers exert?
Lotus Spa at The Sukosol, Bangkok, has introduced one option _ Green Bamboo Massage. This is a unique deep tissue massage using bamboo canes at points that need extra pressure like shoulders and back, combined with traditional Thai massage.
So, why bamboo? Why not, say, a ruler or a PVC water pipe? Phattareeya Phattaratarathip, the spa PR manager, explained that following the Zen philosophy, green bamboo is believed to possess special healing power.
"Bamboo is always cool to the touch no matter what climate it is in, so its coolness and calming effect would be beneficial for the overworked muscles. Zen philosophy also says that bamboo can help relieve tension and anxiety. We use two bamboo canes in each treatment, a heated one during the massage and a cool one at the end," she said.
The 60cm-long cane is rolled on the areas that are particularly tense, such as the calves of women who spend hours in high heels. Phattareeya said it would be difficult to reach the troubled tissue deep inside using just the therapist's fingers (or knuckles, or elbows, or even feet) so bamboo canes are a more effective option in tackling the troubled areas. Don't let the term "deep tissue massage" scare you, because if done properly, it does not have to be painful at all. Following the Zen philosophy that everything is sacred and nothing is rushed, the treatment is performed with relaxing, fluid precision and loving intent _ the kind that is relaxing enough for you to fall asleep within minutes.
The massage starts off like any other massage, with firm strokes of the hands. This allows the therapist to determine problem areas, and target them later using the bamboo cane to roll firmly but in a flowing movement.
The oil used in the massage comes in five beautiful scents _ champaca, water lily, rose, jasmine and Spanish cherry (pikul), formulated by the spa. For those who might be allergic to scented oil, another non-scented option is pure olive oil. The oil is slightly heated to help relax the stiff muscles.
Phattareeya added that the bamboo for the treatment has to be the right size _ big enough to give the right pressure and small enough to target specific areas. The spa chooses Thai bamboo canes that are right in size, and smoke them to prevent pests and increase durability before they are used.
The Green Bamboo Massage is part of the 90-minute Green Spa Package, which also includes a stimulating Green Tea Body Scrub prior to the 60-minute massage. The spa uses ground rice grains as a scrub, as it contains skin nourishing rice germ oil that helps fight skin dehydration. The scrub also incorporates green tea, which is high in anti-oxidants, and olive oil which has natural vitamin E for anti-ageing benefits.
Green Spa Package is priced at 2,650 baht and is available until February. For further information or bookings, contact Lotus Spa, The Sukosol, at 02-247-0123 ext 1606-7.
About the author
- Writer: Napamon Roongwitoo
Position: Outlook Writer