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  • Writer's pictureAntje Hepkema

Self care : the benefits of an Ayurvedic self massage

It has been a while since my last blog and a lot of things happened since!

Over a year ago we moved to a small village in burgundy to be more connected with nature. Once settled I dislocated my shoulder after a clumsy fall which transformed in a frozen shoulder. So I decided to take the time needed to take care of myself and slow down with my Ayurveda practice. One cannot take care of someone else if self care is needed.

I got inspired this week to write a new blog about Ayurvedic self massage because it brought me so much and many of my clients confirmed the benefits of it too. One of my clients confirmed yesterday that she has been sleeping deeper since starting to do regular self massages. This inspired me to write this blog as this is a nice routine to introduce with many benefits.

According to Ayurveda

In Ayurveda language we call this self massage Abyanga as part of your daily routine (Dinacharia) :

According to Ayurveda, a daily massage promotes softness, youthfulness, and luster of the skin.

Abyanga reduces the cold, dry, light and rough aspects of Vata Dosha (air). The regular movement of the massage removes stiffness in muscles and articulations.

Application of oil on the feet enhances the quality of your sleep.


Women going through (peri)menopause observe often struggling with sleep : from difficulties to sleep in to a lighter, disturbed sleep….Yes ladies, this is caused by an increased Vata Dosha. When getting older, Vata Dosha is becomes more dominant.

I can highly recommend to introduce a regular massage into your routine !

In addition, when using sesame oil, your body is not only lubricated, but also nourished with calcium from the oil.

Other benefits are that it reduces stress and anxiety..

How to do ?

The best oil to use is sesame oil (organic, cold pressed). If you find it too warming, coconut oil could be used as well or a combination of the two.

Warm the oil au bain marie : poor some oil in a glass pot that can be put un another pot with hot water. The oil should be a bit warmer than the skin.

Massage the oil on your skin from top to toe : starting with your face down to your feet and don’t forget soles of your feet. You don’t have to use loads of oil, just make sure the skin is covered. You could wait for a few minutes for the oil to be absorbed by the skin.

Then take a warm shower, or a bath.

Personally I don’t do the self massage regularly (my vata constitution is taking over regularly 😀).

I know that I need to return to my routine when my skin and lips are getting dry and the quality of my sleep is getting irregular.

So please try it out and let me know the results !



About the author:

Hi! My name is Antje. Thank you for taking the time to read my blog!

I am an Ayurvedic and Orthomolecular health and lifestyle advisor and a yoga teacher. I was diagnosed with Osteoarthritis in October 2019, at 49 years old, and I was struggling like you: I had to lay down after each little walk, I had problems to get to sleep. Thanks to Ayurveda I learned to overcome the pain and currently I am living and active life full of energy.

I support also women during (peri)menopause for health and emotional balance.

Please visit Ayurveda By Antje to read more about my story and about Ayurveda.

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Nov 22, 2023

Thank you for your great article and reminder Antje! I need (and want) to get back into the habit as well 😍

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