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Ayurvedic Massage - Types, Treatment, Cost And Side Effects

Last Updated: Aug 28, 2019

What is Ayurvedic Massage?

Ayurvedic massage is one of the key parts of Ayurvedic therapy. Just like how a machine needs to be oiled regularly, the body would require oil therapy for keeping its vital organs sane and healthy. Oil and herbal massages are used consistently throughout many forms of its treatments. We are in a world where we deal with stress and pressure in every walk of life. Also, the physical environment has changed drastically beyond comparison. In such a world we are battling with health issues and inflexibility almost on a daily basis. Ayurvedic massages are the best one could get benefited to keep these conditions under control.

These messages are channelled throughout our body and take care a wide variety of ailments including fatigue, strengthening of the nervous system, improving eyesight, nourishing the bodily tissues, and giving flexibility to your everyday needs. The biggest positive trend is that it can benefit your sleep patterns and can normalize sleep. The oils used have been scientifically proven to be rejuvenating and are hugely beneficial to your body, mind, and soul. These massages have therapeutic properties inculcated within them and can be good for your overall wellbeing if channelled correctly.

What are various types of ayurvedic massage treatments?

There are different types of Ayurvedic massage treatments. As per the Ayurveda, the various types of ayurvedic massages are as follows:

  • Abhyanga is an individually prepared herbal-oil massage designed to deeply penetrate deep into the skin and relax the mind and body. They also help in the breakup of the impurities and vastly help in the removal of the stagnant waste from the body.
  • Pizhichil is the most famous forms and involves a continuous stream of warm herbalised oil poured over the body and massaged in perfect unison. The warmth of the oil penetrates deep into the tissues and rejuvenates the entire body.
  • Udvartana is an herbalised steam bath, during which the head and the heart are kept cool while the body is heated systematically to remove the physical toxins accumulated deep within the tissues.
  • Garshana treatments consist of dry skin brushing with either soft wool or a silk glove. The purpose of this treatment is to enhance blood circulation and clean the skin of impurities.
  • Shirodhara is a treatment where warm herbalised oil is poured over the forehead systematically and methodically. They are beneficial in synchronizing the brain waves and have a calming effect on the body as a whole.

How is ayurvedic massage performed?

An ayurvedic massage focuses on the marmas and the chakras of your body. These are very similar to the acupressure points, and if these pressure points are manipulated correctly, they can revitalize your entire body. In simple terms, it involves the herbal oil to be poured on your body and is gradually massaged by the ayurvedic expert or the doctor. However, this is not just as easy as it sounds as the masseur would be required to know the vital points in the body and to channel the massage and to focus on the correct pressure.

During an Ayurvedic massage, your room may be filled with music that is both enchanting and soothing for your body, and this alleviates the experience on the whole. The room would also be filled with an aroma of soothing fragrances to rejuvenate the sense of smell. While doing the massage, the expert massage therapist will also be reciting mantras within himself to promote positive energy levels. Ayurveda massage is not just a treatment. It is an experience on its own. More than the body it aims to rejuvenate your mind and which in turn channels the positivity throughout the body. Many people who have undergone these treatments have felt better and are often known to be saying that they have discovered themselves.

Who would need an ayurvedic massage?

Everyone can be an eligible candidate for the ayurvedic massages. They are one of the safest forms of treatment available and do not cause any side effects on its own. However pregnant women can avoid it as the pressure can be disturbing to them. Also, people who are above the age group of 75 can try for these treatments partially as the herbs and oils used may not accept their body condition. It is safe to get the consultation of an ayurvedic expert before you go for these treatments.


Who is not eligible for the treatment?

Ayurvedic massages are extremely safe and can be had by anyone. Pregnant women and people who are older than 75 years of age can avoid it. Also while undergoing these treatments make sure that you are not suffering from any other medical conditions like cold or fever as the oil used may aggravate the situation.

What are the side effects of ayurvedic massage?

No, there are no known side effects due to this treatment. After the treatment, you might feel a slight chill or slight increase in body temperature. This is your body’s fundamental and natural way of removing the toxins, and usually, these symptoms go away on their own. Ayurvedic massages are extremely safe and can be used by anyone. However, ensure that you get these treatments only by professional ayurvedic doctors and therapist and go for the reputed clinic.

What care is necessary after ayurvedic massage session?

Post the treatment you might be given an herbal bath and after which a regular bath might be provided. This is offered to remove the oil extracts that might have stuck to your body. After which, you can get back to your regular work. Wear fresh and loose clothes after the treatment so that the freshness is maintained. You might be asked to follow a specific diet or certain lifestyle changes for the treatments to be a success.

How long does it take to recover?

There is no recovery period involved. You can get back to your routine once the treatment is over. If there are multiple sessions required, make sure that you undergo them religiously as the best effects of the treatment can be felt as a whole.

What is the cost of an ayurvedic massage per session in India?

A full body ayurvedic massage can start from about 1,000 INR and can go up depending on the types of ayurvedic massage oil used. Some of the oils used are very rare and can be done only on an individual’s need. In such scenarios, the cost can go up.

Does ayurvedic massage really work?

In the times we live in, there are too many external factors that control the productivity of your body. Hence it is best to have these treatments regularly for getting a rejuvenating experience. For best results, you can have these treatments once in three months. Ensure that you get these treatments only from reputed ayurvedic centers. Always look for the credentials of the ayurvedic doctor before undergoing the treatment.

What are the benefits of ayurvedic massage?

Massaging the body with oil is known as Abhyanga in Ayurveda. There are plenty of benifits of practicing Abhyanga on a daily basis. Such as Nourishment of the body, Benefits in sleep patterns, provides firmness to the limbs, Stimulation of the internal organs, improves body’s tolerance, offers long life, skin smoothening, provides sound vision and Pacifies vata and pitta.

What are the contraindications of ayurvedic massage?

Ayurvedic massage should not be done in the following conditions according to Ayurveda:

  • Fever
  • Indigestion
  • In any acute illness
  • During menstruation
  • bleeding disorders
  • Hangover
  • Dehydration
  • During chemotherapy

What are the alternatives to the treatment?

There are many alternative treatments to the massages such as the Panchakarma treatments and herbal baths. These procedures are extremely similar to the Ayurvedic massages and can use the same or similar types of oil.

Key Highlights:

Safety: Very High

Effectiveness: Very High

Timeliness: High

Relative Risk: Very Low

Side Effects: Very Low

Recovery Time: Very Low

Price Range: RS. 1000 and above


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Written ByDr. Jyoti MongaBachelor of Ayurveda, Medicine and Surgery (BAMS)Ayurveda
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Reviewed ByDr. Bhupindera Jaswant SinghMD - Consultant PhysicianGeneral Physician
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