Today massage is a widely used therapeutic procedure for various health benefits. It has this popularity because of is risk-free, and it has been used as traditional medicine for thousands of years for healing patients of many diseases. It has also a preventive aspect to defend against disease and preserve health.
Today it has become an important place in Naturopathy. In this article, you will learn about various types of Udvartana massage and their benefits. Udvartana is one form of famous Ayurvedic Massage that is among the many types of Ayurvedic massages in Kerala.
This massage therapy involves body scrubbing using “Ubtan” which is a traditional Indian paste that is a mixture of different natural herbs with grains. In this massage treatment oil or any kind of liquid is not used in other forms of massage.
In this, a paste is prepared using grains, and various herbs; flours, and natural oils are used to prepare it to massage the entire body to get therapeutic advantages. People with Kapha Dosha generally go for this therapy.
What is Udwarthanam?
The word Udwarthanam is a combination of two words (Urdhwa + Varthanam) the word Urdhwa refers to Upward and the other word Varthanam means to move.
It has got its name “Udwartanam” as in this massage stroke performed in an upward movement or in other words elevation. Udwarthanam is a special type of Abhyanga (massage) in which mostly dry herbal powders are used for massaging ( in some steps; oils are used).
It is a massage therapy in which massage is done in an upward direction (i.e. from below to upwards). Udwartanam is significant on its own as it is opposite to the traditional or conventional massage of Abhyanga in which strokes are performed from above to downwards.
Udwarthana Massage is conducted opposite to that of the body hairs which is generally pointing downwards, this movement is called “Pratiloma gati” in Sanskrit.
To Whom Udvartana Massage Is Suggested
- Abdominal Obesity
- Cellulite breakdown
- Preventing the loosening of skin under a weight-loss program
- After childbirth, if you get some extra weight
- Muscular weakness
- Obesity – extremely useful for a fat cutback
- Diabetic neuropathy
- Decrease mobility to joints due to excess Kapha, Ama, or rheumatoid arthritis
- Removing dead cells from the skin and increasing the glow of the skin
- Sclerosis of blood vessels
- Sciatica of Kapha origin
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Hemiplagia, cerebral palasy
- Parkinson’s disease
- Motor neuron disorders
How Udvartana Massage Is Performed?
Udvartana is an Ayurvedic massage therapy that is used to eliminate toxins from the body. This therapy is beneficial in relieving skeletal disorders and muscular abnormalities.
Besides this, there are many curative goals that are targeted by this therapy. In Udvartana, the special herbal paste is applied to the entire body of the person obtaining the massage.
The paste is applied to the body of the recipient, when it dries the mas-sager rubs the paste slowly on the body taking care that the strokes are directed at the heart to remove the lymphatic toxins from the body.
The paste is kept for some time on a body so that it gets penetrated deep inside the skin of the recipient. As soon as the massage with the herbal paste is finished the whole body is smudged with herbal oil over the body for some time.
The time span of the massage is for about one hour, and it is done regularly for a few days. Usually, the duration of Udvartana therapy is for one week.
Different Types of Udvartana Massage
Udvartana, an ancient Ayurvedic massage therapy, offers various forms that cater to individual preferences and needs. The two primary types are as follows:
1. Snigadh or Sneha (Unctuous or Oily) Udvartana
In this variant, Udvartana is performed using an unctuous or oily herbal paste instead of dry powder. The herbal paste typically contains nourishing oils that deeply moisturize and hydrate the skin during the massage. Snigadh Udvartana provides a luxurious and relaxing experience, leaving the skin soft, supple, and rejuvenated.
2. Ruksha (Dry) Udvartana
Contrasting the oily variant, Ruksha Udvartana employs dry herbal powders during the massage. This type is ideal for those who prefer a lighter and more stimulating experience. The dry powders, with their exfoliating properties, effectively remove impurities and dead skin cells, promoting a healthy and vibrant complexion.
1. Snigadh Udvartana
Snigadh Udvartana is a powder massage in which herbal paste is prepared; mix with herb powder and medicated oils are used. This herbal paste is massaged over the skin of the body.
This form of Udvartana benefits in improving complexion, the glow of skin, tone, and skin texture. The principal purpose of Snigadh Udvartana is to exfoliate skin and rejuvenate the body’s skin to prevent skin ailments.
According to the Ayurveda text “Charaka Samhita,” Snigadh Udvartana is beneficial to people with sensitive skin and weak people who cannot tolerate rubbing dry herbal powders.
2. Ruksha Udvartana
In Ruksha Udvartana only dry powders made from different herbs are used for rubbing and massage. These Herbal powders have ingredients that are rough and dry in nature and are used to reduce the surplus Kapha of a body.
Ruksha Udvartana massage is useful for reducing excess cellulite and fat from the skin. It is also advantageous for diabetic persons with insulin resistance. According to the Ayurveda text “Charaka Samhita,” Ruksha Udvartana is most beneficial for obese people.
Herbs Used In Udvartana
Triphala is the powder generally used in this therapy. It is a blend that has excellent nerve-stimulating agents such as.
Triphala, the cornerstone of Udvartana, is a potent blend composed of three essential herbs – Amalaki (Gooseberry), Haritaki (Myrobalan), and Bibhitaki (Belerica). This combination yields excellent nerve-stimulating properties, making Triphala a fundamental element in the Udvartana herbal mix.
2. Deodar (Cedrus deodara)
Deodar, derived from the majestic Cedrus deodara tree, contributes its soothing and grounding properties to the Udvartana blend. Alongside Triphala, Deodar enhances the overall therapeutic effects of the massage.
3. Senna (Cassia angustifolia)
Senna, known for its laxative properties, complements the other herbs in the Udvartana mixture. Its presence aids in gentle detoxification, supporting the cleansing process initiated by the massage.
4. Horse Gram (Dolichos biflorus)
Horse Gram, a legume widely used in Ayurveda, adds its unique attributes to the Udvartana blend. It is particularly valued for its role in promoting healthy weight management and metabolism.
5. Phyllanthus (Phyllanthus niruri)
Phyllanthus, commonly known as ‘Bhumi Amla’ or ‘Stonebreaker,’ is highly regarded for its healing properties. In Udvartana, it contributes to the nourishment and rejuvenation of the skin.
6. Mustard (Brassica juncea)
Mustard, with its warming and stimulating properties, complements the overall therapeutic effects of Udvartana. Its inclusion enhances the massage’s invigorating nature, promoting a sense of vitality and energy.
The carefully crafted blend of herbs used in Udvartana, with Triphala at its core, exemplifies the wisdom of Ayurvedic healing. These powerful herbs, with their unique properties, work synergistically to create a truly transformative massage experience.
The Procedure & Technique of Udvartana Therapy
In Udvartana, therapy warmed herbal powder is massaged in the opposite direction to hair follicles. The ayurvedic powder is applied in seven body positions by rubbing and massaging with pressure for a specific period.
It is generally done by an Ayurvedic expert; they have expertise and techniques to break down cellulite under the skin. The process is performed in seven postures. If the skin is over sensitive sesame or olive oil is mixed with the herbal powder.
The massage is done with wet or dry medicated herbal powders by a massage therapist for around 15 to 45 minutes. Then the person is kept rested for about 15 to be 20-minute. Then bath with Lukewarm water is given to a person. Lastly, a bit, of moisturizing of the skin is done after the bath.
Powder Massage Benefits
1. Increases Skin Glow
It is generally found that people suffering from some nutrition problems also faced skin problems, and their effects appear on the skin. Udvartana can be the best solution for lost skin glow, and ayurvedic powder massage will moreover, help to improve skin glow and complexion.
Opposite direction Stokes performed in Udvarthanam will help to soften and exfoliate the skin. It will also remove the dead cells from the skin giving a beautiful and lustrous glow to the skin.
2. Reduce stomachic Fat Accumulation
If you have loosened skin on your arms, thighs, or buttocks, or suffering from any abdominal fat accumulation, then Ayurvedic powder massage is very beneficial in this situation. It fixes to minimize subcutaneous fatty tissue and cellulite this way; it also reduces body weight and stimulates other weight loss problems.
3. Rheumatoid Arthritis
In rheumatoid arthritis, AMA is the main element that causes this ailment. Udvartana (powder massage) reduces Kapha and ama of the body, so it can be the best therapy for reducing symptoms and inflammation of the joints.
It is necessary that it is performed under the supervision of ayurvedic physicians as in some cases, rubbing the herbal powder with pressure can increase pain, therefore, rubbing should be gentle.
Performing Ruksha Udvartana is more advantageous in the ailment such as rigidity with the feeling of heaviness, joint tenderness with redness, etc.
4. It removes Toxins
It is one of the detoxification ayurvedic therapies, which cleanses the body and discharges bad body odor. Performing Udvarthanam can also remove AMA or toxins from the body. So it can be helpful to prevent various diseases, which are caused by the accumulation of toxins.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Udvartana
1. What is Udvartana?
Udvartana is an ancient Ayurvedic massage therapy that involves using herbal powder or paste in a rhythmic motion to invigorate the body. It is recommended for various health conditions, including weight loss, skin care, and muscle toning.
2. How does Udvartana aid in weight loss?
Udvartana stimulates fat metabolism by using hot and dry herbal powders and oils. The massage’s specific rubbing action opens pores, clears blockages, and increases heat in the tissues, which aids in liquefying fat and promoting weight loss.
3. What are the benefits of Udvartana for the skin?
Udvartana improves skin complexion by cleansing and nourishing the skin. The exfoliating action of the herbal powder removes impurities, leaving the skin with a radiant and glowing appearance.
4. Is Udvartana suitable for everyone?
Udvartana is generally safe and suitable for most individuals. However, it is recommended to consult a Panchakarma expert before undergoing the therapy, especially for those with high blood pressure or skin infections.
5. What are the different types of Udvartana?
Udvartana is categorized into two types: Snigadh or Sneha (unctuous or oily), which involves the use of herbal paste, and Ruksha (dry), which uses dry herbal powders for a more stimulating experience.
6. Can Udvartana help with diabetes?
While Udvartana can be beneficial for individuals with diabetes due to its effects on fat metabolism, it is essential to remember that it is not a standalone long-term solution. For diabetes treatment, consult qualified Ayurvedic doctors for personalized care.
7. How long does a typical Udvartana session last?
A Udvartana massage session usually lasts between 30 to 45 minutes, where the herbal powder or paste is briskly rubbed into the entire body to promote its therapeutic effects.
8. Is Udvartana relaxing?
Yes, Udvartana induces relaxation and stress relief through its rhythmic massage technique. The therapy helps soothe the mind and body, promoting a sense of calmness and well-being.
9. What makes Triphala an essential part of Udvartana?
Triphala, a blend of three herbs (Amalaki, Haritaki, and Bibhitaki), is a crucial component of Udvartana. It possesses excellent nerve-stimulating properties and aids in detoxification, making it fundamental to the massage’s therapeutic effects.
10. Can Udvartana be done at home?
While Udvartana can be done at home, it is recommended to seek guidance from a qualified Ayurvedic practitioner for proper technique and personalized recommendations for the herbal blend used in the massage.
Apart from being effective in reducing fat, Udvartana also rectifies the lymphatic circulation throughout the body. The diseases like eczema, lymph drainage, rosacea edema, or acne can be cured by the Udvartana treatment. It aids in refreshing the body as well as mind.