I’m the creator of the Still Light Center system and school of Thai Yoga Massage. I’m also the author or contributor of 15 books and manuals on the subject including the #1 Amazon Best-Seller in 14 categories, “The Joy of Giving Massage: How to Give a Massage so Good You’ll Want to do it All the Time”
My story is that I have been giving and teaching Thai Yoga Massage since 2002. I found it shortly after my father’s passing when I was feeling particularly lost, vulnerable and alone. I was drawn to it out of a deep need to live a life more full of love and to find a great way to help people. I was also tired of sitting behind a computer screen for eight hours a day!
I am forever grateful for all the ways it has supported me, financially, but even more in learning what it means to be a man and a human being in a beautiful and troubled world. I do it, I teach it, I share it because of the deep peace it brings. Because it is a vehicle for learning about universal loving kindness, aka Metta.
When I say vehicle, I guess I’m thinking of something like a Tesla on rocket fuel, because it is this environmentally friendly technique that is so effective at helping others with their aches, their pains, their energy. But Thai Yoga Massage also teaches you so much about yourself, is a gateway to personal health -physical, psychological, spiritual- and shows you how you have a place in this world that is so valuable.
I’m at the point in my career where Thai Yoga Massage has been there to help support me with the passing of my father, the passing of my primary massage teacher, the loss of important friends, the end of two long-term relationships, a cross-continent uprooting (that included some major sh!t!) and my greatest gift -and challenge- the raising of my daughter.
Like an anchor in the deepest ocean it has helped ground and support me through these life opportunities. It has been a teacher, a companion, a friend to help me find my smile, to heal from deep-rooted pain, to find radiant energy and then recover it when that shine feels lost.
Yes, it is a great massage that is so effective at helping people with chronic pain, stress, headaches, tension and so many more ailments. And if that’s what you’re looking for, then you’ve come to the right place.
Yes, it helps yoga teachers to become more knowledgeable in their craft, to better support students with hands-on assistance, to create better classes and more teaching opportunities.
But it can also be much more than that and such a sublime way to connect and feel connected in a world where so many people feel alienated and alone. It can help you make friends, find deeper meaning in your relationships, even improve your love-life.
Personally, just for the fact that I get to give this massage to my daughter every night before she goes to sleep and will be able to carry that forward with her, I am forever grateful for this gift that keeps on giving beyond my wildest dreams.
It embodies the essence of what Thai Yoga Massage is all about.
Stillness speaks to the meditative quality that is at the heart of learning these skills. In fact, Thai Yoga Massage as we teach it is about turning meditation into a flowing massage.
When you put yourself on that track, you make space for Light to pour in. For your heart to heal and to expand in the way of universal Love. To feel compassion and connected with Spirit, with our planet, with the people you treat and with yourself.
You get living proof of the experience of being Centered and those benefits, which not only helps you to give a greater massage, but also apply those lessons towards living your dream life.
That’s the promise of what Thai Yoga Massage is about. It’s a great one and it’s why it is the favorite modality of so many people, from yoga teachers, to massage therapists to everyday people sharing it in relationships, with their family and their friends.
Thai Yoga Massage transforms the joy of giving massage into a healing modality that is at least as healthy and beneficial for the person giving it as the person receiving it.
The ability to give a great a massage that will leave your partners and clients begging for more because of how much it helps and how good it leaves them feeling is the cherry on top of a very large sundae.
I have personally seen and felt the power of how regularly giving this massage helps to improve your life and make you a better person. So, my mission is to help people understand how the power of Thai Yoga Massage helps givers and receivers heal from so many of life’s challenges, scars and battles.
One of the many benefits of giving this kind of heart-felt massage is that it tears down boundaries that have you believing you are separate from your neighbors, from your community, from your loved ones. It is humbling in that way and it brings you together, it helps tear down judgements and perceptions that can leave you feeling, small, stuck and weak.
Touch, massage, connection, seeing someone else suffering and being able to offer a helping hand all help to create space, generate an outpouring of compassion and care and help to make life sweeter.
And that is just for starters! These are the kinds of benefits you can discover after your very first course. Imagine how that grows when it becomes an integral part of your life, when you have people you know and care about that you can give -or exchange- with regularly.
What we have here is a powerful force for change at a time when so many of us -not to mention our planet- are hugely in need.
I am a big believer that big changes start with personal growth and extending it to people you care about. Things snowball from there and this massage with its 2500-year-old tradition is here to stay because it has proven to so many just how well it helps facilitate that vision for a great life and a better world.
Thai Yoga Massage works as well as it does because making real, lasting change involves moving information from your head to the heart. Using your hands, or in our case, using your whole body to help give an outstanding massage is the vehicle. It is about the process of turning kindness, compassion and healing into a living reality – no longer a concept in your head.
And when that is the intention, the process and the result all wrapped in one package, you get to live it. In your massage and in your life. For Real.
Still Light Center, founded by Shai Plonski in 2011 teaches online and in-person Thai Yoga Massage courses in Berkeley, San Francisco, Hamilton Ontario, Sydney Australia and yoga retreats such as the Kripalu Center, 1440 Multiversity, the Omega Institute and at locations in North America and around the world.
Our team has taught more than 5500 students of all ages and backgrounds the secrets to giving an outstanding massage. Our videos on You Tube have been viewed more than 362 000 times (and counting!) as we have become the go to place to learn Thai Yoga Massage.
Thai Yoga Massage has helped me and thousands of people to live a great life giving this healing massage to clients and loved ones. It can happen for you too and it’s really easy to get started. I have loads of free content I’d love to share with you so you can start learning right away
Joanne has been practicing yoga for over 20 years, teaching for 15 years, running yoga alliance registered teacher training programs for 7 years and practicing Thai Massage for 7 years. Joanne currently owns and operates Bend Yoga Studio in Dundas Ontario and partners with Shai and Still Light Center to have a teaching hub there. She stumbled onto Thai Massage in 2012 and this next journey into teaching others the practice of Thai Massage is just another example of following the flow of transition and growth.
Jonn is a Thai Yoga Massage Practitioner, Thai Yoga Massage Teacher, Yoga Teacher and Sexological Bodywork Practitioner.
An accident in 2008 rendered Jonn 15% impaired, but through a rehabilitation program including yoga, the majority of his range of movement has been regained. Jonn subsequently discovered the benefits of Thai Yoga Massage, which integrates perfectly with Yoga. As a result, Jonn established CE YOGA in 2014; the practice delivers customised Men’s Yoga and Thai Yoga Massage at his Potts Point Studio in Sydney, Australia.
George discovered Thai Massage in 2011 after 20 years of studying T’ai Chi, Yoga and Meditation and very quickly fell in love with it, deciding to set himself on track not only to practice the art but to teach it as well. Coming from a background of professional teaching and disabled care, he feels that Thai Massage is not only about the nicest thing you can do for another person, but becoming a practitioner is also one of the nicest things you can do for yourself, providing a grounding in peace and harmony through deliberate, meditative action.
Blake Martin teaches anatomy courses for Still Light Center and holds a PhD in Kinesiology and a Graduate Diploma in Neuroscience from York University, a B.F.A. and M.A. in dance, and a bachelor of education. His current interests include understanding how the body gives rise to consciousness, as well as how thinking is offloaded to the environment and other people. Blake is a Research Scientist with the Individual Training and Education group, and teaches in York University’s Dance Science Diploma program, as well as speaking provincially, nationally and internationally on issues related to yoga and the brain, arts and the brain, creativity and the brain, anatomy, and classroom management. He is a respected teacher in Traditional Thai Massage, a long distance runner, and a martial artist for more 30 years. If it moves and thinks, he likes it.
Albert Lee has been involved in spiritual pursuits and the healing arts and since 1999. Since then he has trained extensively in Yoga and Ayurveda at the Kripalu Center in Massachusetts and the Ayurvedic Institute in New Mexico. In 2006 he began his training in Thai Yoga Massage and starting studying with Shai in 2007. Drawing inspiration from world renowned spiritual teachers and months spent in silent meditation retreats, his workshops are infused with awareness and loving kindness.
A Maine native, Eric along with his partner, Terry Lacy, created Om Land Yoga (with locations in Bangor, Portland, Brewer, and Orono), as well as becoming a licensed massage therapist.
To help bring the benefits of massage out into the community, Eric has worked with a number of organizations including Cirque du Soleil, the American Folk Festival, Pittsfield Rehab and Nursing, and Eastern Maine AIDS Network and is an active member of the Maine Chapter of the American Massage Therapy Association. Eric became a certified Thai Massage Therapist through Still Light Centre in 2015 and has taken many continuing education workshops on such topics as myofascial release, Tom Myers’ Anatomy Trains, trigger point therapy, and Kinesiotaping.