by Jonathan Nash
“Anyone for Thai massage, I got Qualifications!”
Somewhere along the line, I got the idea that I wanted to do a Thai Massage course. I’m not sure why really, as I’d never had a Thai massage, didn’t really enjoy receiving massages, and had never really thought much about it all before!.
I’d heard that Chiang Mai was the capital city of Thai massage courses, so when we arrived there I began to look into the various options available.
Due to the time of year, some of the courses which I looked into were not running due to lack of students. This was a bit of a shame, as some of them were very well recommended by people and websites which I’d looked at.
Other courses only offered 10 or 15 day courses and while we had a fair bit of time to spare, we did not have that much! What I really wanted was a five day course which didn?t take up too much of my day! After all, after nearly three months of travelling, spending a lot of time learning would be a bit taxing on my brain!.
Eventually, I settled on the Loi Kroh Traditional Massage School .It was just a sort 20-odd minute or so walk from Elliebum ,where we were staying. Classes ran daily from 9am to 3pm, and the course ran over four days. I did the beginner’s course, which ran through basic Thai massagetechniques.
After the first day, I was absolutely shattered. It’s lucky the breakfast’s at Elliebum were good, because I needed all the brain/body food I could get. Neither my mind nor body knew what had hit them, and at the end of the first day I could barely walk!.
As my muscles got used to it things got a bit easier, but it never got too easy. The course was a little more formal than I’d have liked it to be, I’d rather have had a bit more of a laugh, but the teaching was one-on-one, and my instructor, Pare, was a very good teacher.
She was also very good at massage, and my aching muscles were always a bit disappointed when it was my turn to massage her. She was also a lot smaller than me, making some of the moves a bit odd from my perspective. In some of the techniques, the masseur has to climb right on top of the client, I was worried I would squash Pare, but we had no problems!.
Towards the end of the week, as I got to know Pare, we had a good laugh, she would make fun of the fact that I’m so stiff I could barely touch my knees when I’m standing up!.
I really felt I had come a long way, and now I can both touch my knees and sort of give a Thai massage. I was really exhausted though after all the learning and exercise, and looked forward to the weeks and months ahead of travelling with a renewed vigour (after four days of being a slave to a course).
Still, I definitely enjoyed the experience. I still need to practice, so if anyone wants an amateur Thai massage in which I may injure them, let me know!.
For more on our visit to Chiang Mai please check out our
“Mood to Travel” blog.