I was so delighted when I was invited to Ayurveda Pura for a consultation with Dr Deepa Apte, where she would assess my doshas. I was even more delighted when I arrived to find out I was also going to be treated to a Marma Abhyanga Ayurveda Energising Massage. It’s a while since I wrote about the treatment, but you can read more about my experience at The Spa at Dolphin Square Spa here. More on the massage in a little while, first a bit of background information about Ayurveda.
Ayurveda means “the complete knowledge for long life” in Sanskrit and Ayurveda is a type of traditional medicine native to India which dates back over 5000 years. It was so lovely to meet Deepa, whose face I recognised from Natural Health magazine as she is a regular contributor. During the session she assessed my physical, mental and emotional state through reading my body language, reactions, feeling my pulse and studying my tongue to ascertain my Doshas. There are three Doshas in Ayurveda medicine, which are responsible for different functions in the body –
- responsible for all eliminations from the body
- assists with metabolisms (Agni)
- controls movements in the body such as breathing, heart beat, motivation and contraction of muscles
- relays sensory input from organs to the brain
- mobilises the function of the nervous system
- keeps the flow going between the stomach and the bowels through the liver and the spleen
- directs digestion and therefore metabolism
- converts external images into our visions through optic nerve impulses
- gives us our hunger and thirst cues
- related to the fluids/mucous of the body
- carrier of nutrients around the body
- gives strength to perform physical tasks
Deepa concluded that I was Tridoshic originally (meaning each Dosha manifested itself equally in my body) but that there was currently a blockage in my lower abdomen which means that my Pitta dosha is imbalanced. To address this issue Deepa recommended taking hot water with lemon and ginger every morning. This is an old habit that I had fallen out of but I have since gotten back in to it and have barely missed a single day. It’s an excellent caffeine-free way to start the day and I find it really invigorating.
After the consultation I was left in the capable (read miracle-working) hands of Colette for my Marma Abhyanga treatment. This massage technique calls upon Ayurveda energy points (Marma means energy in Sanskrit) that stimulate the circulatory, immune and nervous system. In Ayurveda, these energy points are places on the body where flesh, veins, arteries, tendons, bones, and joints meet. They may also be seen as the junctions where Vata, Pitta, and Kapha meet. The massage technique involves working on these points in a figure of eight motion to expell whatever shouldn’t be there and draw in what should be there. This massage is used for rejuvenation rather than cleansing, and I left feeling lighter, super energised and nearing euphoria. I slept like a baby that night, and awoke the next morning feeling super refreshed, revived and full of energy. This treatment has really helped put a spring back in my step and has aided my digestion.
To find out more about Ayurveda, the Ayurvedic treatments on offer at the Spa, its range of Ayurvedic beauty products visit www.ayurvedapura.com Marma Abhyanga Ayurveda Energising Massage cost £70 for an hour and a half.