Heartwood is offering three weekend trainings to dive deeply into theory, technique and practice of Ayurvedic Massage and bodywork. These courses, designed for licensed massage therapists, provide an opportunity for them to expand their repertoire of services to include Eastern-oriented massage techniques.
The Ayurvedic massage and bodywork treatments were first described in writing about 300 BC in the Charak Samhita, although it is believed that the massages were practiced long before the beginning of recorded history. In this training you will receive instructions closely matching the ancient traditional ways while also embracing contemporary considerations and application for clients today.
Ayurvedic massage training is offered in three weekends that each focus on a different approach to this dynamic bodywork. Module One concentrates on Ayurvedic Spa Massage and Bodywork. Module Two will teach Powder, Paste, and Poultice applications, and Module Three will focus on Oil-based Massage. (Detailed descriptions follow).
The modules need not be taken in any particular order, as each module (plus the online Ayurveda basics course helping the practitioner understand the core concepts of Ayurvedic assessment and treatment) stands alone. The various aspects of Ayurvedic healing that relate to each module will be covered as part of that module’s training. Each module lasts two full days, with training beginning at 9 AM and continuing through 6 PM on Saturday and Sunday. The days will contain a blend of lecture, discussion, demonstrations, and hands-on practice both as a therapist and as a recipient.
Opportunity to practice, explore the materials used, and to learn from an experienced ayurvedic massage teacher at the beautiful Heartwood Yoga Institute make this an unparalleled learning experience for LMTs. Of particular value is that each participant not only receives the valuable knowledge offered in this training but has the opportunity to experience these powerful massage experiences on the table so they have experiential knowledge of these time-honored practices.
The fee for each module is $675, which includes all materials required, manual and a healthy vegetarian lunch each day. A certificate will be issued following each training.
Signing up for the full series offers a discounted price of $1800. (Financing available.)
For full coursework with discount, register here.
Dorm Housing is available for the cost of $100 per module, covering two nights. Private housing also available.
Feb. 10 & 11
9am - 6pm
Shiro-Abhyanga-Nasya treatment, commonly shortened to SAN, is a roughly hour-long combination of massage to the head, neck, face, and shoulders to help move and stimulate the lymphatic fluids in the head and help drain the sinuses, along with a eucalyptus steam treatment and medicated Ayurvedic nose drops.
Nadi Swedana is fomentation therapy, a medicated sweating of the entire body to release impurities and help clear toxins from the system. This is often followed by Nasya nose drops as well, but no massage per se is provided. Typically 30 minutes is sufficient.
Marma Chikitsa opens the Doors of Perception through various means, most commonly involving slow, methodical pressures on the marma points, vital energy centers of the body, but also accessible through Yoga Nidra and other practices. We will learn various charts of positions and also practice Nidra.
Garshana is a brushing massage technique done without lubrication, using raw silk gloves made especially for the purpose. It is outstanding for exfoliation but also extraordinary for boosting circulation and increasing the flow of subtle energy and prana throughout the body. It is considered to be a lymphatic massage, and often precedes the oil-based massages covered in a different module.
And finally, Shirodhara is the pouring of a thin stream of specially chosen warmed oil onto the third eye area of the forehead. The stream is occasionally swept to various points on the forehead to help balance the hemispheres of the brain and the nervous system, synchronizing the brain waves, stilling the mind, and helping to release stress and tension. Sessions usually last from 30 to 60 minutes and are extremely healthy for the skin, scalp, and hair.
Feb. 17 & 18
9am - 6pm
Basti oil treatments are applications of warmed oil over joints, organs, or troublesome areas of the body, where a well is created by mixing flour and oil to form a customized dam around the area, oil is poured in, and frequently replaced by fresh warmed oil to keep the temperature more or less constant for 15 to 20 minutes.
The Valuka Sweda is a dry sand poultice, heated and applied to the body either after oil-based massage or without massage at all, in order to help break up lumps or congestion. Various medicinal plants are added to the sand to help relieve pain, inflammation, or stiffness.
The Pinda Swedana is a hot oil poultice containing sand, fresh leaves, and certain herbs to transfer heat to the body and induce sweating as a therapy, plus deliver Ayurvedic medications.
The Sashtika Shali Pinda Swedana is similar but uses specially cooked basmati rice with milk and other ingredients, helpful in a huge range of difficult conditions for a client.
Udhvartana is a powder-based massage treatment, highly therapeutic and focused on the lymphatic system. Using special blends of Ayurvedic powders and performing a dry massage is highly beneficial for obesity, rheumatoid arthritis, and other kapha disorders, helping exfoliate the skin and a host of improvements for body, mind, and spirit. Adding oil and turning this into a paste massage helps combat nervous disorders, adds smoothness to the skin and promotes healthy elimination of wastes, bringing clarity and brilliance to the mind and senses. These two styles of massage will be learned both as two-handed and four-handed sequences.
9am - 6pm
Oil-based massage work is termed Snehana, encouraging the divine emotions of love and tenderness in the mind. These are ancient practices that predate the Vedic period.
Abhyanga massage is the ultimate calming and relaxing massage technique, stimulating the lymphatic system and promoting drainage, with extensive focus on the hands and feet. The client is typically draped in Eastern fashion, with the breasts exposed so the lymphatic system can be worked. This is a wonderfully healing and integral part of the treatment, but we will also learn how to accommodate the modesty of some members of the Western cultures and drape alternatively to protect the modesty while giving up as few of the benefits as possible. Please be aware that most clients, and students, will have upper bodies undraped for this work and we will be in a group setting for practice.
Vishesh massage is quite similar, but in some ways the opposite. Where Abhyanga calms, Vishesh stimulates and energizes. This massage is performed with selected oils to match the dosha balancing needs of the client, but strokes are also selected accordingly. This form of massage also activates the lymphatic system and is typically chosen for those with athletic or strong bodies, on auspicious or special days, and usually early in the morning as a very energizing practice.
Both of the oil-based massages will be learned as a solo therapist as well as working as a team of two therapists, doing four-handed massage work.
David Shaddock, LMT MA#95440, is the owner of Heartwood Yoga Institute. He is a massage therapist and Reiki master as well as an IAYT certified yoga therapist and ERYT-500 with over ten years of experience. He began studying massage therapy in Illinois in 1998 and received his Florida training at Manatee Technical College in 2019. He is certified in Ayurvedic Bodywork, Sacred Temple Lomi, Craniosacral Levels 1 & 2, and provides CEU credits for Florida therapists in several massage-related fields.