Immune building tips to weather well this Spring!
By Rippan Sandhu
Abhyanga or self massage is an integral part of your spring wellbeing. Ancient Ayurvedic wisdom has known the truth of this for centuries. A daily full body oil massage not only nourishes the lustre of the skin and enhances the complexion, it also calms the spirit, relieves fatigue, increases stamina, and promotes pleasure, perfect sleep and overall longevity.
The benefits of massage
The benefits of massage go deeper than just improving the health of our skin and hair. When done correctly, massage helps to improve circulation of both blood and lymph in our body. Increased circulation equals higher saturation of oxygen and nutrients to tissues and the correct expulsion of toxins and waste from cells.
Massage helps to prevent premature aging and age related skin changes like wrinkles and pigmentation. It is the best therapy for hair related conditions like hair-loss, greying and premature balding. Health issues like tension headaches, migraines, constipation, abdominal boating, menstrual cramps, joint pain, myalgia, muscle weakness amongst others can be relieved by regular massage.
Quite apart from its great health benefits, the quiet down-time that we get during self-massage is a great way of reconnecting with our own self.
Steps to Follow for Self-Massage
Warm our Oliana oil (pour approximately ¼ cup into a mug and warm using a coffee-cup warmer.) Test the temperature by putting a drop on your inner wrist, oil should be comfortably warm and not hot.
Sit or stand comfortably in a warm room Apply oil first to the crown of your head (adhipati marma) and work slowly out from there in circular strokes—spend a couple of minutes massaging your entire scalp (home to many other important marma points—points of concentrated vital energy).
Face: Massage in circular motion on your forehead, temples, cheeks, and jaws (always moving in a upward movement). Be sure to massage your ears, especially your ear-lobes—home to essential marma points and nerve endings.
Use long strokes on the limbs (arms and legs) and circular strokes on the joints (elbows and knees). Always massage toward the direction of your heart.
Massage the abdomen and chest in broad, clockwise, circular motions. On the abdomen, follow the path of the large intestine; moving up on the right side of the abdomen, then across, then down on the left side Finish the massage by spending at least a couple of minutes massaging your feet. Feet are a very important part of the body with the nerve endings of essential organs and vital Marma points.
Sit with the oil for 5-15 minutes if possible so that the oil can absorb and penetrate into the deeper layers of the body
Enjoy a warm bath or shower. You can use a mild soap on the “strategic” areas, avoid vigorously soaping and rubbing the body
When you get out of the bath, towel dry gently. Blot the towel on your body instead of rubbing vigorously.
Enjoy the feeling of having nourished your body, mind, and spirit and carry that with you throughout your day.
Rippan and the Ayurda team.