“Standing or walking, sitting or lying down,
During all these waking hours,
Let us establish mindfulness of good will, Called the highest state!”
– Gautama Buddha
Doesn’t lying down at night feel so good? Could sitting down feel as good?
One place where sitting down feels as good as lying down is at the airport in Austin, Texas. That’s because whenever I fly I make sure to get a chair massage. For me it’s a special pleasure because most of the therapists there are graduates of my school – each time it’s a mini-reunion!
One thing I really appreciate about this modality is that, unlike most table massage, after a chair massage, I feel energized, rather than sedated. Better put, I feel energized…and relaxed!The original chair massage treatment, developed by David Palmer, is an acupressure routine adapted from the Amma tradition of Japanese massage. It tends to free and stimulate energy flow, rather than just being sedating.
A secret here is receiving in the seated position. As opposed to lying down, most of us spend many of our waking hours sitting. So receiving seated massage translates more directly into our waking life. And it is no accident that most meditation is done in the seated position. Chair massage takes advantage of the meditational possibilities inherent in sitting.
In the Bible, “anointing” was the name given to sacred massage with special blended oils. Though chair massage is not often performed with oil, I will say that many are the times I have felt anointed sitting in the chair. An awake and skilled therapist can play the role of re-kindling a feeling for the sacredness of life – even in the middle of a busy airport!
May we all enjoy our journeys with this “mindfulness of good will, called the highest state!”
Just once a year we offer a very special Chair Massage Training with Cindy Anderson. This year you can take it August 19-20. Cindy studied in 1991 (!) with Iris Lee one of the two people originally trained to teach chair massage by its founder, David Palmer. Cindy is a master of Shiatsu, Watsu, and so many other forms of bodywork in her over 25 year as a practicing therapist. To learn anything from her, including this full training in Chair Massage, is a fantastic opportunity! Don’t miss it!