Abhyanga – oiling self-massage

Ah the winds of fall in Colorado are upon us and the swirling mind and emotions that come with too much wind. Ayurveda offers some wonderful self-care to help us ground ourselves through storms, whether internal or external. I especially find this ritual helpful when traveling, I sometimes feel like my cells haven’t quite caught up with me or that I’m ungrounded.

oil mix

Bottle of oil (sunflower, apricot kernel and jojoba)

Abhyanga or self-massage with oils is a very nurturing ritual for self care. You can perform this daily, weekly, monthly or seasonally. I personally partake a couple times a week. I find it nourishing and grounding.

Self-massage can take place after garshana (skin brushing). To perform this lovely self massage, find a quiet warm space. Choose an oil combination from below. Start at the feet, massaging up toward the heart. Long strokes along the bones, circle around the joints and abdomen. Oil the head and face as well (I use plain oil for the face). Sit for a bit and allow the oils to sink deep into the skin. You may want to take a warm bath or put a robe or towel on for warmth.

Carrier oils that are quite nice are Sesame (unrefined/cold pressed), Coconut Oil (unrefined/cold pressed) and Ghee.

Essential oils that help correct Vata imbalances are basil, cumin, ginger, orange. Essential oils that help to balance Pitta are lavender, peppermint, rose, sandalwood. To balance Kapha, helpful essential oils are black pepper, clary sage, rosemary, lemon.

To learn more about the powerful effects of abyhanga, please see this article by Dr. John Douillard


The information in this article is intended for your educational use only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health providers with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition and before undertaking any diet, supplement, fitness, or other health regime.

This entry was posted in alternative therapies, ayurveda, essential oils, massage, stress relief, wellness, yoga. Bookmark the permalink.

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