Herbal Ball Massage Therapy
Herbal Ball Massage Therapy = A Powerhouse of Benefits
Herbal Ball Massage Therapy is the use of steamed medicinal herbs to massage the body and help reduce many pains and ailments. This herbal compress can deliver a powerhouse of benefits through the combination of medicinal herbs and plant medicine with the therapeutic uses of massage therapy.
Herbal Compress Ball Massage
An Herbal Compress is also know as a medicine ball, spa ball, compress or poultice. It is a mass of fabric containing dried or fresh herbs and plant. Typically used to treat sore muscles, cramps, pain, bruising, and more.
Herbal Compress Massage Benefits
The benefits of massage therapy are vast and well known. The benefits of massage therapy are being studied and have already been proven. Those results are to lower stress, reduces pain, enhances attentiveness, and more.
You can find out more about the benefits of massage therapy and all of the different types of massage that exists in this article.
Natural plant medicine has roots throughout human history for various purposes. Animal life, plant life, and human lives have co-evolved. Using herbal medicine gives us a natural defense mechanism against disease and infection. Medicines derived from plants have played a pivotal role. It is important in the health care of many cultures, both ancient and modern.
What is Traditional Thai Medicine/ Traditional Thai Massage?
Traditional Thai Medicine is a system of practices and methods that use herbal medicine, massage and bodywork, and spiritual healing that is indigenous to the area of Thailand. In the practice of Thai Massage the practitioner applies compression along the acupressure lines. As the client you are fully clothed. You are passively put into yoga like positions and stretches as well as resting positions. Massage therapy techniques can be provided in many forms. Techniques can include the use of certain tools and herbal applications as well as sound therapy.
If you would like to learn how to provide Traditional Thai Massage in Florida visit the Bodhi Sangha in Gainesville, FL, where you can study with an incredible teacher, who is also my teacher, Ariela Grodner.
A Basic Thai Herbal Compress Recipe
What can go inside of an herbal ball for massage therapy?
You can add a large variety of ingredients to your herbal compress. Not only medicinal herbs but also things like clays, flowers, honey, resins, and grains.
Here is a list of common ingredients, but there are many options beyond this list.
Zingiber officinale Roscoe aka Ginger. At least 115 constituents are identifiable. Gingerols are the major constituents. Ginger shows significant increases of relaxation and warmth to those that suffer physically and emotionally.
Chamomile is one of the most ancient medicinal herbs. It is a member of Asteraceae family and represented by two common varieties – German Chamomile and Roman Chamomile. The dried flowers of chamomile contain many terpenoids and flavonoids contributing to its medicinal properties. Chamomile preparations are helpful for many human ailments such as hay fever, inflammation, muscle spasms, menstrual disorders, insomnia, wounds, gastrointestinal disorders, and so much more.
Cinnamon (Cinnamomum zeylanicum, and Cinnamon cassia), the eternal tree of tropical medicine, belongs to the Lauraceae family. It is another extremely important spice all around the world. This useful plant primarily contains vital oils and other derivatives. In addition to being an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, cinnamon has also been reported to have activities against neurological disorders.
The genus Eucalyptus L’Heritier comprises about 900 species, of which more than 300 species contain volatile essential oil in their leaves. It’s leaf aromatic oil has astounding widespread biological activities, including antimicrobial, antiseptic, antioxidant, chemotherapeutic, respiratory and gastrointestinal disorder treatment, wound healing, and insecticidal/insect repellent
More Ingredients for your Herbal Compress for Massage
Kaffir Lime rind and/or leaves
Kaffir Lime is under the family Rutaceae. The whole fruits and leaves in traditional medicine for headache, flu, fever, sore throat, bad breath and indigestion, and exhibit pharmaceutical effects such as anti-inflammation, antimicrobial and antioxidant activities
Lavender, Lavandula angustifolia, has a long history of use as an analgesic, antibacterial agent, anti-fungal agent, antidepressant, antispasmodic, and sedative. Extracts treat conditions ranging from acne to migraines.
The compounds found in Lemongrass, Cymbopogon citratus, are mainly terpenes, alcohols, ketones, aldehyde and esters. It is helpful for treating headaches, abdominal pain and muscle pains.
Rosmarinus officinalis, Rosemary- Some of the medicinal actions are Nervous system relaxant, sedative, anti-depressant, mild analgesic (topically), antioxidant, antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, astringent, antispasmodic. It relaxes smooth muscle spasm and the smooth muscles of capillaries and arteries, thus enhancing blood flow.
Sage, Salvia species, Traditional medicine uses are for the relief of pain, protecting the body against oxidative stress, free radical damages, inflammation, bacterial and virus infection, to name just a few.
Tamarind is a hardwood tree by the name of Tamarindus indica. Regarded as one of the most important, multipurpose tropical fruit tree species in the Indian subcontinent. The juicy pulp becomes a nice sweet and sour mix, sometimes referred to as the “date of India”. Some common traditional uses include the treatment of abdominal pain, wound healing, fever, inflammation, and eye diseases.
Turmeric, the Golden Spice, Curcuma longa. More than 100 components can be isolated from turmeric. Some of its medical actions are: Anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-microbial, antibiotic, astringent, circulatory stimulant.
In Ayurvedic Medicine, turmeric is a well-documented treatment for various respiratory conditions like asthma and allergies. Its common uses are for runny nose, cough, sinusitis, abdominal pain, to improve circulation. Turmeric is common part of a healthy regime by Ayurveda practitioners, Traditional Chinese Medicine doctors, and in folk medicine.
Herbal Ball Massage Therapy Techniques
How do I used my Herbal Compress to Massage?
There are several different techniques to deliver the benefits of an herbal compress used in a massage.
Compression – You can press downward onto your skin gently or firmly, release and repeat.
Tapping – Lightly or firmly tap around the area you want to treat.
Roll– Roll the ball along an area of the body, again, this can be done gently, firm, fast, or slow. Mix it up!
Placement – Place the herbal poultice on the area you would like to treat. For example: Sitting one on your forehead for a headache or on your chest for congestion.
How to Fold your Herbal Compress to prepare for Massage
About the Author: Gina Scianimanico is a practicing Licensed Massage Therapist in Florida with over 14 years experience. As a LMT, Yoga Teacher, Herbalist, and Educator, she holds space for each individuals unique needs. Using a creative variety of techniques, she offers workshops, classes, massage, and yoga services.