Relax and Rejuvenate the Ayurveda Way!

by Shinjini Guha January 01, 2021

Relax and Rejuvenate the Ayurveda Way!

Our lives are characterized by constant hustling and striving for a balance between professional and personal lives. This hectic lifestyle seldom leaves us time for ourselves where we can relax and unwind. Monotonous and long hours of work often result in being physically and mentally exhausted which begins to take a toll on our health. The ancient science ofAyurvedahas devised a perfect solution to prevent such burnouts.

Indulging in a therapeuticAyurvedamassage can induce relaxation and helps in reducing stress. This ancient science believes that one of the primary reasons for illness in the body is an imbalance in one’sdoshaand one of the ultimate goals ofAyurvedamassage is to reduce the said imbalance. The areas that are massaged include the face, body, arms, and feet. A conventionalAyurvedamassage is accompanied by natural, aromatic oils that detoxify and nourish the skin and rejuvenates the body and mind alike. 

Apart from preventing diseases, regularAyurvedamassage has various benefits for both one’s mind and body.

Benefits ofAyurvedamassage:

  • Improved sleep cycle 
  • Softer and smoother skin 
  • Better circulation of blood 
  • Reduces joint aches as they are well lubricated 
  • Calms nerves and reduces anxiety 
  • Detoxifies the body 
  • Toned muscles 
  • Treatments inAyurvedaare not generic but are flexible to accommodate each person’s individual. This idea is extended in terms of massages as well. UnderAyurveda, several massages were created for different purposes. Even the oil used is chosen based on the dominantdoshaof the person. Before getting anAyurvedamassage, it is always advisable to inform the practitioner of any allergies so that oils with potential allergens can be avoided. 

    Types ofAyurvedamassages:

    • Pizhichil – Warm oil is poured and massaged onto the recipient from a special type of vessel called akindi which is suspended four inches above the body.  As the oil is massaged, the nerves are soothed, and one feels calm. This massage is often prescribed to those whosevata dosha is high. The most used oils in this massage are:
    1. Dhanwantar taila 
    2. Ksirbala 
    3. Pinda tailam
    4. Narayana tailam

    After the massage is completed, you can bathe with green gram powder and warm water to remove excess oil. This massage is recommended for anyone healing from body stiffness, fractures, and paralysis. 

    • Shiro AbhyangaThis is one of the most common types of massage and involves applying and massaging herbal oil to the scalp. A deceptively simple-looking massage like this comes with a host of benefits like:
    1. Inducing sleep 
    2. Prevents dry and itchy scalp
    3. Reduces migraines and sinus-related headaches 
    4. Protection from any ear disease 

    Some of the oils used for this massage are:

    1. Danvantramoil 
    2. Nirgundioil 
    3. Surasadioil 
    4. Eladi tailam

    Shiro Abhyangais suitable for all people but the massage oil might be changed based on the dominantdosha

    • NjavarkhijiCommonly practiced in Kerala, this type of massage is used to induce perspiration which aids in detoxification. Medicated oil is first applied to the body following which the body is massaged with medium pressure. To perform the massage. Small blouses made of cotton are filled with a type of cooked rice callednjavarawhich is then dipped in pure cow’s milk and a paste made of herbs and then massaged over the body.Njavarkhijihelps rejuvenate the skin and aids the relaxation of one’s mind and body. 
    • Udvartana– This massage improves circulation, aids in detoxifying the body and makes one’s skin glow. A paste made of herbal ingredients like mustard, gooseberry, horse gram, senna, deodar, myrobalan, belerica and, phyllanthu. This massage comes in two variants:
    1. Snigadh Udvartana– the powder from the herbs is applied massaged onto the body with medicated oils 
    2. Ruksha Udvartana– the dry powder is directly applied onto the body

    Both these types are effective in balancing thekapha dosha.Ruksha Udvartanaaids in weight loss as it removes the excess cellulite and fat present in the body. 

    • Garshana– Unlike conventionalAyurvedamassages, this one does not involve medicated oils or herbal powders but simply a pair of pure silk gloves. There is no lubricant used during the massage as well. The massage is performed by applying light pressure onto the body and helps get rid ofamaor waste and toxins through the lymph nodes. This massage has several benefits, including:
    1. Higher mental alertness 
    2. Exfoliation of skin 
    3. Renewal of cells 
    4. Makes one more energetic
    5. Balances thekapha dosha

    In a world that expects us to be constantly on our toes, it is important to ensure that our health is not at stake.Ayurvedamassages not only prevent potential illnesses but also rejuvenate the mind and soul. Embracing this ancient science will not only make our lifestyle healthier but bring us one step closer to being more self-aware and achieving inner peace. 

    Shinjini Guha
    Shinjini Guha

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