Techniques employed in Mexican massage treatment have been adapted from traditional medical procedures practised by Mayan and Aztec healers and shamans in antiquity. Modern-day practitioners of this kind of therapy are known as “sobadoras,” a phrase that roughly translates to “street masseuse.” Many indigenous herbs and spices, such copal or floral herbs, are used in Mexican, Mayan, and Aztec massage practises. Obsidian stones, which are revered in Mexican culture, are frequently employed in a variety of therapies.
In contemporary Mexican and Central American society, sobadoras practise as untrained chiropractors. These non-traditional medical professionals treat patients by applying a lubricant like mineral or baby oil to the affected body part before doing a type of linfatic massage.
The inside of the forearms, the outside of the wrists, the abdomen, and the feet are among the body regions that these professionals frequently target.
In contrast to the old Aztec empire, which was made up of a loose confederation of city-states in central Mexico, the ancient Mayan civilization was spread out from south-eastern Mexico into Guatemala, Belize, Honduras, and El Salvador.
The Temazcal steam bath ritual and the Sobada herb therapy are two examples of traditional Mexican massage methods that are drawn from Mayan and Aztec traditions.