The physical part is done on the floor on a mat with the client fully clothed. It combines stretches with work on meridians called sen. Practitioners use their whole body in leverage and interactive work as they move and rock the client into various positions and apply rhythmic pressure up and down the meridians.
The Thais interpret stiffness in muscles and joints as stagnation or blockage which leads to disease. So they have developed some very “persuasive” techniques to loosen one up, which includes stretching every part of the body and taking all joints through their full range of motion.
Other techniques are also strategically employed, especially compression, cross-fiber, plucking, and pressure point and may be applied with the practitioner’s hands, knuckles, elbows, knees, and feet. People sometimes say Thai Massage is harsh and painful because of these aggressive techniques. Indeed it can be harsh, if one is not mindful and combining all the other elements that make a real Nuat Boran treatment. The practitioner’s body mechanics on the floor can give powerful leverage, but it can also give one the control to adjust the amount of pressure and movement to fit the client’s condition and needs: from very gentle to vigorous. So in my workshops I not only teach a sequence of movements for loosening the whole body but I also show how to be in control and sensitive to the effects.