Although we all refer to a massage as, well, a massage, that's not strictly true. There are many different types of massage available, from a gentle relaxation massage to a therapeutic deep tissue massage.
One of our favourites is Thai Massage - sometimes referred to as Thai Yoga Massage. Thai massage goes back a long way; it's a very ancient healing treatment that incorporates massage, acupressure, Indian Ayurvedic principles and even yoga positions.
It is rumoured that this type of massage was created by Shivago Komarpaj, physician to Buddha himself, and a man noted for his extraordinary healing skills.
A Thai massage is similar to reflexology, in that you remain clothed. No massage oil is used, so it's great if you want to squeeze in a massage during your lunch break. Massage, in all its forms, basically involves a trained therapist working on your body, using hands, elbows, forearm, fingers, and so on. The techniques differ according to what type of massage you are receiving.
For example, a deep tissue or sports massage concentrates on problem areas, such as a stiff neck or strained muscles. It's great for really getting into those knots and getting rid of tension.
On the other hand, a Swedish massage - or classic massage - is gentler, and is proven to help manage stress and deliver a feeling of general wellbeing.
Then there's Shiatsu, Chinese massage, lymphatic massage, trigger point therapy, hot stone massage - and the list goes on.
So what makes Thai massage so different, and so beneficial?
As you can see, there are certainly crossovers with other forms of massage therapy. Generally speaking, any type of massage should leave you feeling more relaxed and less stressed, and those are key points.
You know how they say that stress is a killer? It's a good point. Stress can have a very debilitating effect on our bodies, and can lead to all sorts of illness and disease.
Sure, stress in inevitable in our busy lives - and a certain amount of stress is needed to keep us moving and motivated. But too much stress causes both mental and physical problems.
The great thing about Thai massage is that it treats mind, body and soul. So imagine how much better you would look and feel if you booked one every week.
It's a known fact that stress not only puts us at risk of heart disease, stroke and other diseases, but also affects how we age. Professional Thai massage minimises cortisol production (the stress hormone) and calms the body.
A quick word on those energy lines before we go. It's all to do with that yin and yang energy. Thai massage practitioners focus on 12 major energy lines (meridians) and hundreds of pressure points.
The belief is that many illnesses and diseases are caused by certain meridians becoming blocked. Thai massage may clear those blockages and help restore our health and wellbeing.