More about Ayurvedic Oil Massage - Abhyanga

In Ayurveda, massages have been used for thousands of years to improve health and wellbeing. Different from the common Swedish massage, an Ayurvedic massage therapist will use less pressure on your body (we do still use proper pressure, but it is not a deep-tissue massage) and work with medicinated oils that have been chosen for your body constitution and current health specifically.

What is Abhyanga Oil Massage?

The classic Ayurvedic oil massage is called Abhyanga. During an Abhyanga massage, warm oils are poured onto your body and massaged into the skin. The constant and rhythmical movement of the massage have a therapeutic effect on body and mind. 

Your body will let go of tensions and the massage of muscle tissue, joints and bones will ease pain that you might experience in your everyday life. Your mind will get calmer. During an Ayurvedic oil massage you will experience that you mind quiets down, the jittering in your head and the constantly racing thoughts might get calmer and calmer until it is finally completely quiet and you can just relax and enjoy your massage in peace and complete inner and outer silence. But this is not the only wonderful side of Abhyanga, because there is one aspect to it, that is very unique.

The secret and power of the Ayurvedic oil massage lies in the oil itself. Before each massage session, your ayurvedic massage therapist checks in with you in order to understand how you are feeling. Are you stressed, do you feel pain, do you suffer from constipation or do you have troubles falling asleep? Believe it or not, but these are all issues that Abhyanga can help with – with the help of the massage strokes and medicinated oils. Each patient is massaged with an oil that is specifically chosen to meet their requirements and help them to improved wellbeing.

There are different oils to treat different imbalances. I am currently working with 10 different oils that have all been produced carefully and according to traditional Ayurvedic methods in a clinic in Sri Lanka. The herbs that are used for these oils are grown organically and in optimal conditions in order to develop and pass on their full potential into the oils. Some of the oils I work with contain more than 30 different herbs and are very powerful, especially when used regularly.

During a thorough Abhyanga massage, the oil will be worked into your skin and through the specific massage strokes. This way your body can absorb the oil easily. The skin is the largest organ that we have and through it we can make sure that the healing properties of the oils will be transported directly to the places where they are needed.

What to expect from an Ayurvedic Oil Massage?

I offer different packages of Abhyanga – from 30 minutes to 2 hours, anything is possible. In a shorter session we will typically focus on one or two specific areas of your body, for example if you feel very tense in your upper back, I will focus on back, shoulders and arms. It is possible – and very much recommended – to use Abhyanga as a preparation for Marma therapy and Pinda Sveda. These are two wonderful treatments that complete the oil massage and will make you feel completely out of this world.

I recommend not to shower straight after the massage. Yes, you will be oily (therefore also the recommendation to wear comfortable clothes, that can get oily), but this is the best that you can give to your body. If you leave the oil on at least 30 minutes, the healing properties of the herbal oils can really reach deep into your tissue and nourish on a very profound level.

What are the benefits of Ayurvedic Massage?

Because we are using these special oils, we can treat specific issues in a very targeted way. We have oils that can get the circulation going and oils that will ground you, oils that work against inflammations, oils that promote bone and joint health and oils that will make you have a wonderful deep sleep.

Abhyanga for stress and anxiety

Many of the clients that come to see me in my practice are suffering from stress, anxiety and insomnia and I can speak from experience that Abhyanga is a bulletproof way to deal with stress and anxiety. Of course, on our way to health we should strive ultimately to eliminate stress from our lives, but sometimes we just can’t. Ayurvedic massage to the rescue!


Anxiety and insomnia often occur in very stressful times. You should take them very serious and there are several tools that Ayurveda gives us to find the cause of these issues and regain complete balance. One of these tools is Abhyanga and the other manual therapy techniques that are used in Ayurveda, like Marma therapy and Pinda Sveda.

Abhyanga for beautiful skin

The oils I am using at Namastow are of superior quality and nourish your skin profoundly. Additionally, the herbs that these oils have been medicinated with have a very beneficial effect on your complexion. The strokes and techniques that I apply will also improve the blood flow in your skin – making sure that all the goodness from the oils is being transported to every single cell as well as giving it a rosy and fresh appearance.

I use a specific Ayurvedic cream for the face, that has one of the most powerful Ayurvedic herbs – Brahmi – as it’s main ingredients alongside wonderfully nourishing Shea butter.

Abhyanga for improved digestion and weight loss

In Ayurveda, excessive weight is associated with an imbalance in your Doshas and an accumulation of toxins (Ayurveda calls this Ama) in your body. Abhyanga has a detoxing effect, especially when used in combination with Pinda Sveda.


During an Ayurvedic massage liquids in your cells will be moved – liquids will move and the digestive system will be stimulated. This means that Abhyanga can also help with constipation and weight loss, however I do strongly recommend to accompany the massage therapy with a nutritional and lifestyle consulation in order to establish which foods you can best digest and how you can gain a healthy weight and establish balance in your body.

How often should I get an Ayurvedic massage?

This depends very much on your body constitution and your current health. It is beneficial to have a daily massage, but who has the time and money for that? In general, I recommend my clients to have one massage at least every 4 – 6 weeks. For clients, who suffer from anxiety, insomnia or who are going through very stressful periods of time, I do recommend to increase the frequency to one massage every 1 – 2 weeks.



Ayurvedic Oil Massage

Abhyanga is the name of the traditional Ayurvedic oil massage. It's a very relaxing oil massage that comprises of different techniques in order to relax the body, encourage detoxification, enhance the nutrition of the skin and nourish blood, tissues and organs through the power of Ayurvedic oils.

Depending on your physical constitution and your wellbeing-goals I will carefully choose the right ayurvedic massage oil for your session. These oils have been produced in a traditional process using ayurvedic medicinal herbs that have very powerful healing properties. 

Abhyanga is the best treatment when you feel stressed, anxious or weak. It can release bone and joint aches and is just a wonderful and relaxing experience. Abhyanga is not a deep-tissue kind of massage. The touch is firm, but I do not apply the same level of pressure that you might be used to from other massages that you have experienced.