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Thai Yoga Massage With Alana Jackler of Yoga Kneads

For the first birthday I ever celebrated with Glamadad (9.5 years ago, eek!), we enjoyed a couple's massage together.

Well, I enjoyed it.

See, the first part of the session, a nice masseur showed us how to massage one another. The scent of lavender filled the air. There was candlelight and rose pedals, and lots and lots of effleurage. A perfectly romantic birthday.

But after 45 minutes, we were separated to have our own individual massages. I was led by a masseuse into another room and Glamadad remained behind, with the masseur.

He believes his mind is protecting itself by blocking out the exact details of the event but what he does recall, is the distinct feeling of a hairy forearm moving across his body. Hair intertwined.

Glamadad didn't receive another massage until 4 years later, when I foolishly convinced him to try a hydro massage during a stay at the Plateau Spa in Hong Kong. After the near drowning, it was final. No more massages.

But poor Glamadad has back pain. He sits for nearly 12 hours a day in a high-intensity, high-stress job. I know he would benefit tremendously from massage and I think I've finally discovered the right type...

Thai Yoga Massage.

 Alana Jackler, Yoga Kneads

Alana Jackler, Yoga Kneads

Endorsed by Oprah as her favorite massage, Thai Yoga Massage is an ancient Oriental technique that combines acupuncture, passive stretching, reflexology and energy work, with deep tissue massage. It's also been coined, "the lazy man's yoga" because the therapist is doing all the work, moving the body into different positions. Thai Yoga Massage helps posture, alignment, strength, and flexibility, and it's a great alternative for those who aren't into traditional spa massage offerings but still want a restorative experience. The massage is conducted on a mat, on the floor, fully clothed.

I was excitedly curious when I learned of Alana Jackler of Yoga Kneads in Jersey City. She's a certified yoga teacher and Thai Yoga Massage therapist, and an athlete herself, having figure skated competitively and coached tennis.

We scheduled a Thai Yoga Massage session for the Monday after the New York City Marathon, in which I up and ran the last 7 miles with a friend finishing the full 26.2, after not having run even a mile in months.

Alana arrived with thick mats and music in hand. All I was required to do was relax and let her take the lead. She worked on my pressure and energy points and gently moved me into stretching positions, which felt fantastic. I had the chills consistently throughout.

Alana's professional but personable, and very knowledgeable about the body. Of course I asked a million questions and told her all about poor, traumatized Glamadad. Turns out she also suffers from chronic back pain and further explained that Thai Yoga Massage helps relieve muscle tension and stress, improves flexibility and circulation, and increases breathing capacity, all of which boost the immune system.

I highly recommend Thai Yoga Massage whether you're a fan of traditional massages or not.

Alana also specializes in couple's massage and her forearms are hairless.

Services are available at Yoga Kneads' studio in Jersey City or in-home.

Yoga Kneads | The Pilates Haus | 155 2nd Street, Jersey City, New Jersey | (917) 406-2668

{Glamamom was not paid for this post but I did receive a complimentary session. All opinions and recommendations expressed herein are my own.}