Abhyanga is an act of holistic Self Massage with Warm Oil that is applied to the body. The practice is done prior to bathing so I normally do it at night, a good time is right after dry brushing. I highly recommend getting an oil that is specific for your Ayurvedic dosha because they are infused with herbs to find balance. The practice of Abhyanga penetrates into the cells and supports a release of toxins in the body (physical, mental, and spiritual). It is an act of cleansing and detoxifying, while promoting rejuvenation and self healing.
Benefits of Abhyanga:
- Benefits skin
- Increases circulation to organs and tissues in the body
- Vata and Pita balancing
- Helps in reducing excess weight and impurities in the body
- Helps sleep by calming the nerves
- Reduces facial wrinkles when applied to the face
- Supports hair growth when applied to the scalp
How to conduct an Abhyanga Massage:
- Put oil, or oil mixture, into a plastic bottle. Boil some water and stick the plastic bottle in the boiling water to warm the oil. Do this until the oil is warm.
- I usually do the massage in the bathroom on a towel so I don’t get the oil all over, but you can do it wherever is best for you.
- Apply a generous amount of oil to the body.
- Massage. Start towards the legs and work your way upward towards the heart center/chest area. For legs work upwards, chest are go in circular motions going inwards towards the heart. Arms should also go in upward motion to support circulation. Massage should take 10-15 minutes.
- Take a warm shower or bath afterwards, use a mild soup to wash it off.
- Towel Dry off.
What oil do I use?
Depending on your dominant dosha, specific oils will support balance.
- Vata: Sesame Oil/Almond Oil Mixture with Turmeric, Ginger, and Basil.
- Pitta: Coconut oil, you can also mix with sunflower oil if you’d like. Herbs to add to the oil mixture are Turmeric, Chamomile, and Lavender.
- Kapha: Sesame Oil with Ginger, Sage, and Rosemary.