Indian Head Massage can be seen in many parts of India. Massage has always played an important part in Indian life, featuring in the earliest Ayurvedic texts, which date back nearly 4,000 years. Indian Head Massage springs from a tradition of intergenerational family massage and has been practised for over a thousand years. Originally it was developed by women as a part of their grooming routine. Also, head massage has been performed by barbers designed to stimulate and refresh, rather than being part of a beauty regime. Today in India, infants received a daily massage from birth until they are three years old to keep them in good health. After which they are massaged once or twice a week until they are six, at which stage they are then taught to share a massage with the family members on a regular basis.
Similarities of Indian Head Massage reached the West long before we knew it to be, Indian Head Massage, performed as ‘shampooing’ within a hairdressing salon. Some hairdressers today offer scalp massages within their conditioning treatments. Shampoo comes from the Hindu word ‘Champi’. Being ‘Chami-ed’, means having your head massaged.
In the 1970’s a man called Narendra Mehta came to England to train to be a physiotherapist and massage therapist. During his training he was amazed that nobody taught him how to massage the scalp, especially coming from a family background where it was, a way of life. He then decided to go back to his native India and research head massage, so he could bring it back to the West.
Mehta discovered a variety of techniques all over the country and so along with his knowledge; he extended the therapy to include the shoulders, neck and upper back along with the traditional hair and scalp. He also developed the techniques of Indian Head Massage to include subtle energy massage, a part of Ayurvedic treatments, from which it originated.
In 1981 Narendra Mehta exhibited at Olympia with overwhelming success and many people wanted to practise his techniques. He has since travelled to Cyprus, Greece, Spain and Sweden teaching his techniques.
In 1995 Narendra Mehta introduced a course, which led to a qualification to practice Indian Head Massage.