Day 336: My Experience with Traditional Chinese Massage a.k.a. Full Body Smack-down


I just bought my ticket to Malaysia!!! I leave on March 5th and arrive in Penang on March 7th after stops in New York, Frankfurt, and Singapore. YIKES. But I get frequent flier miles and hopefully some upgrades on the flight. I am officially insane… but happy!


Whew. Now, let’s get back to the 365 project which is almost complete!

Sunday, December 2nd

After a long night out at the Bund, we slept through most of the morning. Peter had some work to do so I decided to do a quick workout! I love taking a break from exercise because it feels so good getting back into it.

Finally we were ready for a late lunch at our favorite local spot, ET Cafe. I come here to work all the time and love the ambience. It is also only a 5 minute walk from the apartment so it is very convenient.


We enjoyed our usual sandwiches with a soda for him and Americano for me. The sandwiches here are so so so good. We probably get brunch here about once a week. It is that good.

Still exhausted, we watched I Love You Man (hilarious!) before scheduling a late night Traditional Chinese Massage!! Sounds sketchy right??

We met our Malaysian friend PK at his favorite local massage place just two metro stops over from us at Xujiahui. I had been wanting to get a massage since I arrived in China and am glad we made it happen before I left! The other only time I got a massage was during my first trip to China in 2011. It was just as awesome as I remembered.

When Peter, PK, and I arrived, I made sure to request a strong masseuse. As the three of us sat down in individual armchairs in our private room, a small and compact woman made her way over to me carrying a basin of hot water. While soaking my feet, she started to massage the crap out of my shoulders and neck. This lady was small but strong! Although I am used to trigger point massage, this lady put a beat down on all muscles, not caring about that trigger nonsense. This type of massage is known as “tui na” in Traditional Chinese Medicine and uses rolling, kneading, and pushing techniques to open the energy pathways of the body. Well, my energy was flowing! 

With my shoulders beat to a pulp, she put away the basin and started working on my feet. Holy moly it hurt so good. With all my foot injuries, foot massage is my favorite way to break down scar tissue and bring blood flow to injured areas. I just prepare to be sore for days!

After an hour in the armchairs sipping tea and grimacing with sweet pain, our masseuses lead us into another room with 3 tables. We changed into robes and laid down in preparation of a full body smack down. An hour of back, arms, legs, butt, and stomach massage later, our masseuses left us in a puddle of extreme relaxation. Wow, I was going to be sore tomorrow. Who knows what sort of toxins were just released in my body!

It was a delightfully painful experience but very cheap for a full 2 hour massage! If you are ever in Shanghai, make sure to visit a reputable establishment (preferably without scantily clad women lounging in the entryway) and do not be afraid to ask for different levels of pressure.

You do not have to be a massage sadist like me 😉


2 thoughts on “Day 336: My Experience with Traditional Chinese Massage a.k.a. Full Body Smack-down

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