It was believed that the massage art was brought over to Thailand by Shivago Komarpaj (Jivaka Kumarabhacca), a contemporary of Gautama Buddha over 2500 years ago.
Thai massage is known in Thailand as ‘Nuat Phae Boran’, meaning ‘Ancient/Traditional Massage’. The technique is also known as ‘Thai Ancient Massage’, ‘Thai Yoga Massage, ‘Yoga Massage’, ‘Thai Classical Massage’, ‘Thai Body Work’, ‘Passive Yoga’ or ‘Assisted Yoga’.
The client is put into many yoga like positions during the course of the massage. In the northern style out of Chiang Mai, there is a lot of stretching movements, unlike the southern style where acupressure is emphasized.
In the Western world, stiffness and flexibility are regarded as the inevitable result of the ageing process. However, Thai massage helps with flexibility and Thai culture believes that how you feel physically, mentally and emotionally is far more important than your physical age.