Thai Massage Courses at The Sanctuary

We are delighted to offer Certified Thai Massage Courses at The Sanctuary, with Ivan Medici from Italy.

Haga clic aquí para información en español

We are no longer offering this course in 2015, but please contact us if you are interested in coming in 2016 so we can ask Ivan if he is able to return. Please visit our Healing Retreats page for our current workshops and retreats.

Thai Yoga Massage Training Retreat
Dates on application

Thai yoga massage training  -  Thai massage courses

Summary of the Thai Massage Courses at The Sanctuary

This beginners Thai yoga massage training course is taught over 5 days for each level with a weekend rest break in-between. A total of 7 (Level 1 or 2) or 14 nights (both levels) accommodation is included so you can arrive the day before the first class and leave the day following the last class. A study book with all the necessary theoretical and practical material is included.

Students are asked to arrive before 6 on Sunday evening when there will be introduction to the training. Classes will start on Monday morning. Times shown below are approximate and subject to change.

  • 0630 - 0700 Wake up
  • 0700 - 0900 Yoga and meditation (some days by the beach)
  • 0900 - 1000 Breakfast
  • 1000 - 1300 Thai massage training
  • 1300 - 1500 Lunch
  • 1500 - 1800 Thai massage training
  • 1800 - 2000 Rest & Dinner
  • 2000 - 2130 Thai massage training

Some evenings there will be Vipassana meditation lessons, practice time and mantra chantings.

What is Thai Yoga Massage?

"Traditional Thai Yoga Massage is a Holistic Spiritual Practice" - Ivan Medici

Thai massage courses

Traditional Thai massage, called in Thailand “Nuat phaen boran”, which means “massage in the old way”. It is an old healing art rooted in the Ayurvedic tradition, the yoga tradition and later on was also influenced by the knowledge of Chinese medicine. Originating in India, it became popular in Thailand with the arrival of Buddhist monks in the third century AC. 

Thai yoga massage was practiced by the monks in temples until recent days, as a prevention, cure and as a spiritual practice to apply the mental quality of mindfulness, loving kindness (metta) and equanimity, obtained by the daily practice of Vipassana meditation.

Traditional Thai massage, also called Thai yoga massage, follows principles of yoga philosophy to balance the energies of the 5 bodies (physical, energetic (prana), mental, conscious and cosmic), to free blockages in the energy body and the related symptoms. Working the 10 energy lines called “SEN” in Thailand, it uses physical exercises of pressure, stretching and twisting; and stimulating some pressure points.

massage Thai

Thai massage courses

Thai massage spa

Thai massage courses

Thai yoga massage is ideal to obtain a deep relaxation, to reduce stress, improve flexibility, to stimulate blood and lymphatic circulation, to soften muscular contraction, to detoxify the body and to rejuvenate the cells. Thai massage courses help realign the posture, increase vitality and improve general health and well being, obtained by the energy balance.

During the level 1 course we will learn how to give a Thai full body massage, to keep a correct body posture, to breath correctly. We also learn how to use the body weight correctly in order to obtain an effective work for the receiver and to protect the body of the giver.

We learn how to distinguish and locate the main energy lines “SEN” and how to work them as well as learning some pressure points and their therapeutic application, and some techniques for relaxation and concentration. Level 2 of the course will teach more techniques and include much more time for practice on models and fellow students.

Thai massage courses are complemented with the daily practice of Vipassana meditation and Hatha yoga lessons to cultivate mindfulness of movement and breath of our own body.

What is the Main Goal of this Thai Yoga Massage Training?

The main goal of this course is to transmit that the art of Thai Massage is an old method of healing art practiced in Thailand from the oldest time, till more recent, from the monks that lived their lives in accordance to their daily practice to develop minfulness (Sati), concentreation (Samadhi), and loving kindness (Metta).

Important Aspects of this Thai Massage Training

Conscious Breathing

This aspect will be mainly worked through the practice of VIpassana meditation. To do the massage work we have to focus to be in the here and now, being conscious of our breathing pattern as well as the receiver´s. Beeing relaxed and with a good breathing rythm we can transmit peace and have a right concentration state to start the massage practice. At the moment we are aware of our breathing pattern we can release physical and mental tension, this will automatically transmit this state to the receiver.

Thai yoga massage

Thai massage courses

Body awareness

This aspect will be covered by the daily practice of Hatha Yoga, and later with the techniques learning during thai massage classes. The conscious body movement will be harmonious and progressive, never fast and brisk. We wil learn balanced body movement which will teach us to keep a correct body posture during our massage in order not to get tired and to transmit balanced energy in a fluent way.

Mind Awareness

We try to quiet the mind to connect with our inner being. In order to do this we will practice daily Buddhist Vipassana Meditacion, which is the traditional meditation from the Therevada Buddhist in Thailand.

Learning the Technique

By assisting the teacher with demonstrations, and the daily practice of the different exercises with your massage partner, you will gain the ability to assimilate in a correct way the massage and all that you will learn during the Thai massage courses.

Thai Full Body Massage

All this practice will lead us to feel in a different ways, always deeper levels of our being and our consciousness. Over time it will help to awaken the necessary spiritual consciuosness, to see in an intuitive way the physical and mental blockages, which are the origin of our disconforts. 

Once understood all the passages expalined above we will practice them during the course untill we are able to give a full body massage.

The Full Body Massage will be structured in the following sections:

  • feet massage.
  • legs energy lines.
  • single legs exercises.
  • double legs exercises.
  • abdomen, chest and arms.
  • side position.
  • back position.
  • sitting position.
  • neck and face.

Structure of the Course

The training/retreat will be held as two levels , each 1 week long, with two rest days in the middle. Seven or 14 nights accomodation is included for the residential option. We will learn a sequence of exercise to be able to give a full body massage, relaxing and energetically re-balancing. 

The retreat will be complemented by the daily practice of Hatha Yoga and Vipassana Meditation, to cultivate awareness of body mind and breath, to develop body awareness, mindfulness (SATI), and loving-kindness (METTA) which will make the practice of thai yoga massage come from the heart, especially coming from a heart with consciousness and a consciousness with heart.

We will cover the following theoretical material:

  • general info on Thai Yoga massage: history and foundation.
  • notions of the 10 energy lines SEN : to locate theme and threat.
  • how to keep a correct posture during work.
  • how to work using the body gravity and the breathing
  • indications and contra-indications of the different techniques learned
  • correct transition from the different techniques in order to give an harmonious and fluent massage.

RETREAT SCHEDULE  (to be updated)

Arrival day Sunday, meet teacher & students, evening introduction

  • DAY 1 - Demo and practice of feet and legs energy lines exercise.
  • DAY 2 - Demo and practice of single legs exercises.
  • DAY 3 - Demo and practice of double legs exercises.
  • DAY 4 - Demo and practice of abdomen, chest and arms exercises.
  • DAY 5 - Demo and practice of side position exercises.

Weekend rest days, join The Sanctuary Program or relax, beach-time, shopping, boat trips, etc.

  • DAY 6 - Full day practice of the material learned so far.
  • DAY 7 - Demo and practice of back position exercises.
  • DAY 8 - Demo and practice of sitting position exercises.
  • DAY 9 - Demo and practice of neck and face massage, theory and indication of the energy lines, demo of how to give simple therapies.
  • DAY 10 - Final full day practice and celebration, finishing around 7pm

Farewell and departure.

Certificate of Thai Yoga Massage Training

The certificate of the attendance of 80 hours of thai yoga massage beginner training will be given by the international school “Sunshine Network, Lahu Village Research Centre” which is based in a rural village of the Lahu tribe in the north of Thailand, and by the Italian school of thai yoga massage “Red Asia”

The Teacher

Ivan Medici, since the year 2000 has spent most of his time between India, Nepal and Thailand where he has taken various courses in Ayurvedic medicine and Ayurvedic Massage, Hatha Yoga and Thai Massage.

He has participated in Vipassana Meditation retreats both in Lumbini, Nepal at the meditation centre "Panditarama Lumbini Interational Vipassana Meditation Centre" under the guidance of Venerable Sayadaw U Vivekananda ( and also in Thailand with the Sunshine Network tradition of jungle retreat under the guidance of Laurino.

Since 2006 Ivan has taken Thai massage courses for beginners and advanced at the “Sunshine network “ school in Chiang Mai, Thailand, and beginners courses at the “ Lahu Village Research Centre” school located in a village from the Lahu tribes situated in the hills north of Chiang mai., where, since 2009 he participates as an assistant. In 2013 Ivan was authorized to teach for this school ( ).

Since 2009 he also studied with master Pichest Boonthumme in Thailand. In 2010 he was authorised to teach by the Thai massage school “Red Asia” based in Italy ( ). From 2012 he also became an authorized teacher for the Federazione Italiana Traditional Thai Massage ( also based in Italy.

Our 2014 Thai Yoga Massage Training was successfully completed with three students graduating. 

Subject to sufficient interest from students and Ivan's availability, we would like to offer this course again. Please write us a message if you are interested, telling us when would best suit you.

Please visit our Healing Retreats page for our current workshops and retreats.

What is the Cost and What is Included?

Ivan has kindly agreed terms with us which enable us to offer this Thai yoga massage training retreat in English (with Spanish translation if needed) at what we feel is a very competitive price.

All Inclusive Residential Option

Staying in very nice shared rooms for 7 or 14 nights, with three delicious vegan meals per day, you will also have access to The Sanctuary's healing protocol included in the price:

Level 1 or Level 2 - 7,000 pesos 

Levels 1 and 2 - 13,000 pesos.

Thai massage courses - Thai massage courses - Thai massage courses

Non-Resident Option for Local Residents

We are also very pleased to be able to offer this Thai Yoga Massage Retreat to non-residents (excluding food and accommodation)

Level 1 or 2 - 3,500 pesos 

Levels 1 and 2 - 6,500 pesos.

includes the 1st day introduction evening session and 5 days of training (for each level). 

Food Options for non-residentsBreakfast Smoothie - 35 pesos.

Vegan Lunch (our biggest meal of the day) 70 pesos.  Evening Meal - 70 pesos.

Option to Upgrade to Own Space

If you prefer your own space we have some options, subject to availability.

Option 1 - Upgrade to Mandala Room - En-suite luxury master bedroom; + 400 pesos per night

Option 2 - Upgrade to Nirvana room (no private bathroom); + 250 pesos per night

Option 3 - Upgrade to Light Room (RV in Garden-no bathroom) + 150 pesos per night

You can see pictures of the rooms here. The rooms as you will see are quite large with very comfortable beds. There are 3 very nice bathrooms which could potentially be shared by up to 17 people. With careful and considerate use this is not an issue. We have never yet had that many people in the house however.

Extra Nights

If you would like to arrive early, or stay on after the retreat, you can book additional nights from 450 pesos per night (or less for Seva guests). This is an all inclusive price with shared room accomodation, all meals, daily yoga classes, evening workshops and our healing protocol.

See our schedule and prices page for full details.

If you are not a local resident but want to try to find cheaper accomodation and food due to budget restrictions, please ask as we may be able to do something to help.

Limited to only 10 - 12 students we advise you reserve your place early to be sure of securing your place.

Additional Options

We offer healing massage, Tibetan bowl sound therapy, Reiki, Temezcal (ceremonial sweat lodge), and other healing therapies.

We also offer year round a Childhood Deconditioning Retreat which you could take before or after your Thai massage training, or you could even extend your stay for a month as a "Volunteer Staff Guest" for as little as 5,400 pesos all inclusive.

There are also many excursions available in and around Puerto Escondido. Check out this short video for more info.

A reference from a guest who stayed for 6 days with her daughter (translated from Spanish) :

"This place is wonderful. Highly capable and loving people. Juicing, fasting, meditation, yoga, singing bowls ... you name it. Thank you all Luna, Kyle, Pete, Claudia, Lawrence, Fran!!"

The Sanctuary - Thai massage school

How do I Book a Space?

Book Your Place Now

To guarantee your space for this Thai massage courses certification retreat we require an initial 20% deposit payable by Paypal (+ 4% processing charge) or by cash at The Sanctuary. This initial deposit will be refunded in full in the 1st week of June if minimum student numbers are not achieved. On the 31st May 2015 we will confirm if we have reached the minimum number of students required to run the course. A further 30% deposit will then be requested for payment by 15th June. The remaining 50% is due in cash on arrival. 

Write us a message confirming your wish to join the retreat (or with any questions you may have) and we will write back by return with the information you need. The balance of the retreat cost is due in cash on arrival. 

Finally, whether or not you decide to join our Traditional Thai Massage Course, you are invited to read the wonderful book Radical Forgiveness. This book helps to bring an understanding of what i (pete) call a "consciousness of oneness" and to help bring into being a level of "complete self-responsibility" which can lead to very loving relationships, particularly helpful when living in community. In my opinion this full-resposibility is essential for healing. You can find a free copy of the e-book here.

The Sanctuary - view from the back garden - Thai massage courses

Book Your Place Now

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