The magic of self massage for self care - Abhyanga

Create a calming nighttime routine with abhyanga.

One of the fastest and easiest ways to calm the nervous system by applying oil to the body. 

Abhyanga self massage as self care | Joyful Journey Ayurveda


  • encourages lymph movement 
  • increases immune system
  • calming or invigorating depending on speed and pressure 
  • tones muscles
  • anti-aging by moving blood to the surface of the skin and providing much needed moisture
  • benefits sleep patterns
  • calms the nervous system


What oil to use for you:

Generally: If you are cold most of the time use sesame oil.  If you are warm most of the time use sunflower oil or coconut oil.  Sweet almond oil or olive oil can be balancing to most individuals.  

Specifically: There are some very nice herbalized oils made specifically to balance the vata, pitta, and kappa doshas made by A. muzda and by banyan botanicals. To best choose an herbalized oil see an Ayurveda Practitioner and they will point you int he right direction!

How to

  • Lay a towel on the floor for protection and comfort. 
  • Room should be warm and free from drafts. 
  • Warm oil by putting a small bottle of it in the sink filled with warm water.  
  • Starting with your head, place a few drops of oil on your scalp and massage.  
  • Working your way down massage your face, neck, arms with the oil.  Using circular motions on your joints, and long staring motions on your limbs
  • Massage your chest, arm pits, and belly (use a clockwise motion around belly button).  
  • Massage as much as your back as you can reach, moving down to your seat, and your legs and feet. 
  • Rest for a few moments with the oil all over your body.
  • Rinse off in the shower or bath but do not remove the oil with the soap. Only cleaning those "necessary parts" as needed.
  • To get the oil off your hair, put shampoo in first before getting it wet, then a few drops of water to emulsify and then finally getting it all wet to fully shampoo.