Chi Nei Tsang abdominal massage in Chiang Mai

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Last edited: August 21, 2022 at 15:43:50

Chi Nei Tsang is an ancient Chinese healing massage system essentially aiming at healing the internal organs. Since most of our internal organs our located in the belly area, it is often mistakenly referred to as 'stomach massage' in Thai (นวดท้อง) but we also have organs behind the ribs, so the proper way to referring to the area of the body would be abdominal massage.

Chi Nei Tsang 气内脏 in Chinese literally means life energy of the internal organs. Chi or Qi 气 means energy and in Chinese health sciences and practice (Traditional Chinese Medicine, TCM) it refers to our life energy.
Nei Tsang 内脏 are the internal organs, such as intestines, liver, kidney, bladder in the belly area and so on but also the heart and longs in the rib case.

Chi Nei Tsang is a sophisticated system that heals the energy of the internal organs.


In many Asian healing traditions, energy or life energy is the main concept to work with in the body (and mind, as they are usually holistic). If the flow of energy is blocked or if the energy balance in your body is disturbed, illness may occur. In contrast to Western medicine, which focuses much more on abating pathogens, many Asian healing traditions accept pathogens as a given and instead focus on maintaining health balance so that they can't win over us.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the organs play a crucial role in our health. If the balance of energy between organs is disturbed, that may create problems, a Chinese traditional doctor can assess that from feeling your pulse with 2 fingers.

The abdomen is a special area because it stores so many of our internal organs. It is often overlooked in many health practices (including standard Thai massage) which typically focus on muscles and nerves or energy lines elsewhere in the body.

What is so interesting about the organs is that they can store our emotions when we don't properly process them. For example, anger and worry can be stored in the liver which then becomes hard. The energy flow of the liver is then not entirely free anymore but instead remains locked. If that continues for long or to a too large extent, it may create illness related to the liver. In similar way, the kidneys, spleen, large and small intestines, the lungs and the heart may all store a certain type of unprocessed emotions. On a physical level, this may be observed as a knotting of nerves, blood vessels and lymphatic nodes and accumulation of toxins. On an emotional and energetic level, it is the storage of unprocessed emotions.

It is therefore essential to free up the locked energy in our organs, either through Chi Nei Tsang or some other kind of therapy.

It's for this reason that the belly is often called our 'second brain' because it has an awareness of its own. In the West, essentially we also know the power of the organs because we speak of gut feeling, a broken heart and so on. We just haven't systematized all these emotions in their relation with the organs and we haven't developed explicit healing methods for the organs but instead we take Prozac or other medicine to suppress the symptoms.

Chi Nei Tsang in Chiang Mai
How unprocessed emotions can be stored in the organs


Through careful and expert touch the organs in the abdomen can be massaged and stress can be relieved and the natural flow of energy can be restored.

Chi Nei Tsang can contribute to the healing of many conditions, such as digestive problems such as indigestion, constipation and bloating and irritable bowel syndrome, postural problems, muscle tension, chronic back pain, even pain in neck and shoulders and misalignment of the feet, legs and pelvis.

On an emotional level, this may be observed as a clearance of emotions. Some people cry during their Chi Nei Tsang session. That's only good, let it go.

Other observable benefits both on an energetic, emotional and on a physical level could be: energizing of the body, emotional release, easing of anxiety, stress and depression, improvement of the lymphatic system, and removal of toxins, relieving menstruation problems and urinary issues, as well as infertility and impotency.

Chi Nei Tsang by trained qualified practitioners in Senz~ Diva Massage Chiang Mai


Although Chi Nei Tsang originated in Traditional Chinese Medicine, it was adopted in Thailand and to some extent blended in with some Thai massage practices. Chi Nei Tsang is an excellent base for Karsai Thai genital massage, for example, also named Karsai Nei Tsang.

Many people link Chi Nei Tsang with Mantak Chia's Healing Tao and Tao Garden. It is true that Mantak Chia has been a very successful protagonist in spreading Chi Nei Tsang as well as many other health systems, but it would go to far to say that he is the sole inventor. The great benefit of Mantak Chia's Healing Tao is that it systematized a lot of knowledge and practice in health traditions both from China and Thailand and spread it out to the world.


There are various Chi Nei Tsang practitioners in Chiang Mai and most of them are at least influenced by the system of Healing Tao, which gives them a good base of techniques.

If you want a solid Chi Nei Tsang treatment purely aimed at healing issues deals with issues of your organs, you could book a session with khru Ong or khru Ooh at Ong Massage School. Both have more than 15 years of experience in working with Chi Nei Tsang and when you walk out the door, for sure some of your organs will feel more relaxed.
Other examples of serious Chi Nei Tsang practitioners are Omsala and Remco in Blue Garden Yoga.

If you think you will benefit from the therapy aspect of Chi Nei Tsang but you want to combine it with some more pleasure after that, you could try some of the more experimental businesses in town such as Senz~ Diva or All about Touch massage. Both shops have several trained Chi Nei Tsang therapists and offer interesting combinations with Karsai, sensual massage or even Lingam massage afterwards. There is also one therapist trained in Chi Nei Tsang in Daisuki Massage and Dream Massage.

A short impression of various Chi Nei Tsang massage techniques by qualified practitioners in All about Touch Massage Chiang Mai


Please do not eat anything at least 2 hours before the treatment.

People with the following conditions should not receive Chi Nei Tsang:

  • older age (depends on health condition)
  • high blood pressure
  • high cholesterol
  • cancer
  • heart problems, pacemaker
  • diabetes
  • within 1 year after operation
  • women in the menstrual cycle
  • pregnant women
  • women with intrauterine device (IUD)


It is best not to expect too much from your first Chi Nei Tsang treatment. Some relatively superficial issues may be cleared in a first session, such as detoxification, while other issues such as suppressed emotions may perhaps only emerge at a later stage. Nothing that emerges is good or bad, it is just what emerges.

Instead of having expectations because of reading too much about it and allowing your mind to pre-set your experience with concepts, go into the session with an open mindset. Try to see and undergo your treatment just as a caring and relaxing massage.


The first step to overcome for both the therapist and for you as a client is to gain trust. It is not every day that somebody puts his/her fingers into the relatively soft belly area, and the first reaction of the body can be to tighten up. Stomach and chest muscles may have the reflex to stiffen, forming a harness against a hand pressing into the area. Besides the initial physical reaction, there may be emotional resistance and for people with a six-pack it can be surprisingly difficult to relax those stomach muscles, but it is essential for the therapist to reach deeper.

So, if it helps, have a look at your therapist or have a little chat to make yourself at ease, and know that the therapist has your greater good in mind. The ones I recommend here certainly do.


Start to breathe calmly and deeply. Not from the chest but from the belly. Inhale and then let the air flow out by itself. The therapist will work completely in rhythm with your breathing.
Deep breathing will help you to relax so that the therapist can massage your belly area better. Breathing is also essential to allow you to be aware of any emotions, memories, in other words energies that are stored in your body-mind system that are finally awakened and can be released with attention.


Enjoy the touch, enjoy that finally somebody touches you in this area. You'll be surprised that you realize that some points were really aching to be touched!

It's okay to talk or share what you feel to the therapist but it's better not to chat too much, because talking too much may stop you from inhaling and exhaling deeply and also it may defer your attention from the sensation of touch. If the therapist is good, he/she may hit a spot that stores suppressed and until now unprocessed emotions that you were not even aware existed inside yourself. If that happens, stay with that emotion, that memory or energy and first of all, feel it, be aware of it. This is the first step of healing. Just by having attention for it, it can start to be healed and released, but don't rush it, it has it's own flow.

You can ask the therapist if his/her hand can stay somewhere a bit longer where it needs healing attention, or you share any emotion or awareness with the therapist during or after the session.

If it happens that the treatment really strikes an emotional cord, it becomes a real therapy, not just for the body but also for the mind, and it can be as powerful as any other therapy.



It is perfectly natural for farting or burping to happen during the treatment. Air in the intestines may need to find its way out. Don't be too ashamed of it but at the same time don't add extra decibels by squeezing a fart out with extra force ;)

If you feel the urge to cry, let the tears flow. Any feeling that emerges is fine, there is no good or bad.


If you need a moment after the treatment, just ask the therapist if you can lay down quietly for a few minutes or even ask if the session can be extended with a (paid) mild oil massage. It is not advisable to extend Chi Nei Tsang treatment itself after 1 hour because the body can only take so much in this area.

As Chi Nei Tsang is detoxifying, make sure to drink enough water or herbal tea after the session (preferably not too cold).

One can take another session only after at least 3 days.


Chi Nei Tsang is written as 气内脏 in simplified Chinese with phonetics in pinyin as「qìnèizàng」. In traditional Chinese it is written as 氣內臟. Chi 气 is the same Chi as in Chi Gong 气功 (traditional Chinese: 氣功), which is better known for it's meditative movements. This life energy Chi is the same as in Reiki 霊気, a Japanese healing method using hands too.
Contrary to what it may seem, the word Chi life energy is not used in Tai Chi Chuan 太極拳, but of course the concept of life energy is central in this practice too.

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What do you think about this article?

Traveler Posted on June 11, 2022 at 16:01:43
I had a Chi Nei Tsang massage with Ms. Yuyie. She is one of the most gifted therapists I know in Chiang Mai.
The pressure of her fingers was always good and she puts a lot of care in the treatment.
At one moment, she touched a very painful spot. At first, I thought it was just something physical, like a sore muscle, but as she kept pressing an image occurred in my mind of my little son. At first I neglected this vision, but after a while I realized the emotion connected to this image and to the sore spot: it was the sadness I had stored in my body for having to part from my son for so many years, as I had been going through separation issues with my partner.
I asked Yuyie to stay with me on that spot, and after a while I could not suppress my tears. There are not many healers in Thailand who have been able to touch the emotions I had (unconsciously) buried in my body.
Yuyie (still) lacks the (book) knowledge that we in the West have of healing concepts, but I believe she has a natural talent for it. I hope she continues on this road.
Aditya bhatai Posted on June 10, 2022 at 08:38:37
Hello i am finding healers who can give me chie nein tsang massage at home in ban pong 3-4 times a week. I have done this therapy in 2019 regualrly for 3 months. I have had muscular dystrophy & cancer in past. Currently going through wekaness of muscles , abdomen & a lot of heavy emotion