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Indian Head Massage Course | D2D Therapies in London

How you may use the material contained in this training course

The material contained within this training course is intended to allow for delivery of therapy only and does not imply or offer a qualification for teaching the course or delivering course-related training to others in any form.

Medical advice disclaimer

If you require medical advice relating to a particular health problem, D2D Therapies strongly urges you to contact your doctor or other medical practitioner. D2D Therapies is not qualified to provide medical advice about health problems and nothing in the content of these course materials constitutes any form of medical advice. Any natural holistic healthcare information provided, should be regarded as complementary to, not a substitute for, NHS provision or conventional healthcare.

How D2D Therapies head massage was originally practiced in India
How it is now practiced in the West
How D2D Therapies head massage is commonly taught
D2D Therapies head massage as taught by D2D Therapies

How D2D Therapies head massage was originally practiced

Head massage is an ancient technique that has played an important part of life. The techniques are passed on through the generations. Women teach the techniques and practice on their children so the children learn from an early age.

Today, everyone from children through to parents and even grandparents use the technique to address stress levels, improve overall health and promote healthy hair growth. It can be used to combat hair loss due to hypertension, poor circulation, serious illness and even the aging process.

D2D Therapies head massage is an essential part of regular grooming routines. Oil is also used to nourish the hair while promoting circulation through massage. There are several traditional vegetable oils used on the hair during the massage such as almond, olive and sesame. In the summer, coconut oil is favored, whilst in colder months mustard seed oil is used for warmth and stimulation.

In the family environment it is practiced by groups of people sitting in rows gently massaging the hair and scalp of the person sitting in front of them. Outside of the family there is also the tradition of massage at the barbers. Local barbers in India give their male clients head massages after hair cuts to promote hair growth and health.

A word of warning is required with regards to how head massage can be offered in modern India. There are many popular tourist resorts where head massage is offered on the beach. There are no certificates of training displayed and the end of the massage often includes a sudden sharp twisting of the head to induce a ‘cracking’ sound that is alleged to be the release of tension. Anyone who has an existing imbalance or impairment of head or neck movement would be well advised to approach this situation with extreme caution.

How it is now practiced in the West

Many people attribute the development of D2D Therapies head massage in the West to one individual: Osteopath and massage therapist Narendra Mehta. There is no doubt that at the very least Mr Mehta has formalised the therapy (in the UK) that he calls Champissage. Champ is the D2D Therapies word for “head massage” and is the origin of the English word shampoo. Mr. Mehta is said to have developed champissage in the 1970s while he was in London training to become a physiotherapist. At home in Bombay, India, Mr. Mehta was used to receiving regular head massages but could find no one in England who practiced it professionally. As he felt strongly that head massage was an essential part of a healthy routine he travelled to India to research and learn the ancient art and then created his individual technique. With respect to the benefits of head massage on healthy hair growth, Mr Mehta is quoted as follows:

“When the scalp is loose, blood is able to flow freely and feed the roots,” he said. “This increased blood circulation strengthens the hair root and promotes health and shine.”


There are additional benefits for an increasingly stressed society, in that D2D Therapies head massage can also help reduce the frequency and severity of headaches. Head massage is also reputed to have a beneficial effect in cases of insomnia.

D2D Therapies head massage uses a variety of massage techniques on the upper back, shoulders, neck and head to promote good circulation and relief from muscular strains caused by injury or poor posture.

The best way to experience D2D Therapies head massage is to have it performed by a trained practitioner and this way is the most effective.

There are benefits to be obtained by self-massage however and many therapists encourage their clients to practice some of the techniques used at home. This can extend the benefit of the massage therapy and it offers clients the opportunity to practice certain techniques to address stress levels themselves. There is little chance that a client will decide that they know enough and no longer need the therapist because there is nothing so de-stressing as being able to completely relax in the hands of a professional therapist.

A practical note: The delivery of D2D Therapies head massage using oils on the hair is not always welcomed when many people have the therapy during the course of a day when they need to get back to work or be in public after the massage. For this reason oils are only used in small quantities directly on to the skin of the back, upper arms, shoulders, neck and face to prevent dragging or excessive friction on the skin. If the therapist is working on a clothed client (such as in short public demonstrations) then oils would not be used except for face-work.

How D2D Therapies head massage is commonly taught

D2D Therapies head massage is commonly taught as a therapy where the client remains seated throughout and the therapist stands behind the client for most of the therapy, moving to work on one side and then the other for neck strokes and techniques on the upper arms. When it is time for work on the face the therapist will use a rolled up towel to put behind the client’s neck for support and ask the client to lean their head backwards (to rest upon the therapist’s chest) so that acupressure point work and lymphatic drainage strokes can be applied to the face.


D2D Therapies head massage as taught by D2D Therapies

At D2D Therapies, D2D Therapies head massage is taught using both a low-backed chair and a therapy couch in order to maximize the benefits of the therapy without introducing any potentially uncomfortable situations such as the client experiencing pain in their neck whilst they are leaning their head backwards to allow the therapist to work on their face. The low-backed chair is used for the techniques at the beginning of the therapy: Upper back, upper arms, neck and head. The client is then asked to lie down, face up, on a massage couch so that the therapist can work on their face.

Clients are invited to change into an elasticized toweling wrap or a light-weight, though sturdy (and not transparent) sarong. This allows the therapist to have access to the upper back, shoulders and neck. Image 2 shows a client wearing a toweling sarong. Ordinary towels are not ideal as they need to be held closed with a safety pin which can constitute a slight health and safety risk if it opens.

Unfavorable aspects of an entirely seated D2D Therapies head massage

  1. Client has to have their head leaning backwards for up to 10 minutes.
  2. Close contact via the client’s head against the therapist’s chest (or bosom) could be viewed as overly familiar (even when the head or neck is supported with a rolled-up towel).
  3. It is difficult for the therapist to know where the client’s features are when working on the client’s face from behind.
  4. If the therapist stretches forward over the client to get a better view this is a potentially damaging posture for them that could lead to persistent aches and pains if repeated often.

Benefits of delivering D2D Therapies head massage via a low-backed chair and therapy couch in combination

  1. The therapist has a better view of the client’s facial features when viewing from above. This minimizes the risk of the therapist massaging on the client’s nose, mouth or eyes by mistake.
  2. The therapist operates from a better position with regard to their own safe body mechanics.
  3. The client has the opportunity during the second part of the massage to relax completely.
  4. Whilst the client is lying on their back relaxed there is the opportunity for the therapist to mobilize the back of their neck and the shoulder in order to promote better movement of the neck and shoulders. This is managed more easily when the client’s muscles are not actively engaged in supporting their head.

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