What is Lomi Lomi?
May 5, 2010
Lomi Lomi is a form of massage therapy originating in Hawaiian culture. Traditionally performed by healers called "kahunas" in conjunction with herbs, purifying salts, and prayer, it was often shared among family members and passed from one generation to the next. The massage is sometimes accompanied by hula dance to keep the body of the practitioner in sync with that of his or her client.
Setting the intention for healing, the kahuna would also utilize prayer (pule), breath (ha) and energy (mana). The practice of Lomi Lomi was common within each Hawaiian community and contributed to a vibrant, healthy society.
Based on the notion that love is the source of overall well-being, this ancient technique works to cancel the negative effects of stress on the body. Lomi Lomi aids in the healing of our muscles and tissues, but also works on a spiritual level by letting the body know that it is loved. To understand the depth of Lomi Lomi massage, it helps to have an understanding of the Hawaiian philosophy called Huna, and how the
philosophies of Huna relate to bodywork and healing. A fundamental assumption of Huna is that everything seeks harmony and everything seeks love. So how does this relate to massage? Perhaps this can best be understood by one of the alternate names for Lomi Lomi, and that is "Loving Hands" massage. The reason for this is that it works gently yet deeply into the muscles with continuous, flowing strokes, totally nurturing the body and enabling the recipient to relax, give in and simply be. So, while technique is an important part of the massage and associated healing, much of the work is done by love, with the focus of the practitioner on the client being deep and complete, using loving hands and a loving heart.
The Lomi Lomi technique focuses on finding congested areas in the body and dispersing them, by moving the palms, thumbs, knuckles and forearms in rhythmic, dance-like motions. Practitioners frequently use both hands simultaneously on different parts of the body. Reminiscent of the art of dance, Lomi Lomi strokes are broad and fluid. This use of energy, long continuous, flowing strokes, and loving touch, relaxes the entire being; assisting in a letting go of old beliefs, patterns and behaviors that cause limitations and which are stored in the cells of our body.
The Hawaiians look at things in terms of energy flow, suggesting that an idea or belief can block energy flow as much as muscle tension can. Lomi Lomi helps release the blockages, while at the same time giving the energy new direction. Thus Lomi Lomi is not just a physical experience; it also facilitates healing on the mental, emotional and spiritual levels as well. The Hawaiians view all aspects of the body as one and believe that the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual are all part of the "whole" self - when healing is effected on one level, all levels are affected.
Because the practitioner works intuitively, a massage may be slow and very relaxing or at times it may be a little faster and, therefore, more invigorating and enlivening to the body. Sometimes the recipient may experience an emotional release as the massage can release and shift negative emotions, negative beliefs and other "stuff" that has been stored in the cells of the body, with the healing effects of the massage continuing long after the massage is over. This is the key difference between Lomi Lomi and most other massage techniques. This holistic form of massage therapy is designed to create alignment in the body, as well as mental purification, inner peace, and energy movement. It re-invigorates the body and restores its harmony with its surroundings and other people. Lomi Lomi is not targeted to any one group or ailment, so everyone can benefit from it.
For more information or to schedule an appointment to experience a Lomi Lomi massage with Jenn T., call or come by the studio.
For much of her life, Jenn has been searching for an all encompassing holistic way of being and living. This search led her to practice massage therapy three years ago, which she truly believes is something she is meant to do. “We all have the ability and capacity within ourselves to heal and have the body and mind we wish,” Jenn says. Her favorite modalities include Lomi Lomi, deep tissue work and trigger point therapy.