To complement the MASSAGE Magazine article, “Expert Advice,” by Ragaia Belovarac, in the March 2011 issue. Article summary: Specialized body therapies, including massage, are a significant part of the practice of ayurvedic medicine. Ayurveda has special protocols that utilize traditional blended warm herbal oils that nurture the tissues and relax the entire body.

by M. Susan Walsh

Ayurveda is a system of holistic health that originated in India more than 5,000 years ago. From the Sanskrit for “knowledge of life,” this ancient tradition of healing teaches us how to achieve physical health, peace of mind, a joyful heart and spiritual freedom.

To fully embrace ayurveda requires a steadfast commitment and years of study. Most massage therapists do not have the luxury to immerse themselves in these profound traditions, but there are ways to incorporate basic ayurvedic skills into everyday practices. One such technique is Kansa Vatki Foot Massage™. Kansa vatki in Hindi means “metal bowl.”

Kansa vatki has been practiced for centuries. At the heart of the 45-minute treatment is a small three-metal bowl that helps to rebalance the three doshas of vata, pitta and kapha.

This relaxing massage involves the feet and lower legs with particular emphasis on marma points, chakras, prescribed movements with the bowl, and simple massage techniques. The use of clarified butter, or ghee, is essential. This soothing session helps to draw out excess heat, leaving the entire body cool, refreshed and relaxed.

Some of the benefits of Kansa Vatki Foot Massage™ include:

  • Relief for tired feet
  • Improved blood and lymph circulation
  • Enhanced lower limb mobility
  • Restored levels of Prana
  • Sound sleep
  • Reduced eyestrain

“Kansa vatki has created a niche that sets me apart from other LMTs in the area, and it is opening up doors that I never knew were there,” says Gretchen Brunner of Energetic Inspirations in Jackson, Tennessee, “I find that it is as relaxing to give as it is to receive.

“It is such a gentle, yet powerful modality,” Brunner continues. “I am quickly making it the center of my practice.”

As for her clients’ response to this service, Elaine Moranville of St. Louis Reflexology & Massage in St. Louis, Missouri, says, “Every one of my clients has loved the experience. It is incredibly relaxing and therapeutic for all of them.”

M. Susan Walsh  ( is a Certified Massage Therapist and instructor in Northern Virginia. She offers workshops in Indian Champissage™ and Kansa Vatki Foot Massage™ throughout the country. She is the only the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork-approved provider for Kansa Vatki Foot Massage in the U.S. Indian Champissage™ and Kansa Vatki Foot Massage™ are trademarks of Narendra Mehta.