Indian Head Massage techniques practised today in the UK are based on the original Indian head massage healing system of Ayurveda which dates back nearly 4000 years. This system features massage and principles of holistic treatment in that health is viewed in physical, emotional and spiritual wellbeing and that health is maintained by the balance of three subtle life giving forces or doshas (air, ether, fire, water, and earth mixtures). Over generations Indian women have been taught by their mothers to massage different oils into their scalp in order to maintain their hair in beautiful condition. Barbers in India have developed a more stimulating head massage which is incorporated into daily treatments and this has been passed down from barber father to barber son. Head massage in India forms an integral part of family life which is conducted in family homes. It is commonly seen being performed in barber shops, on street corners and on the beaches.
It has only relatively recently become popular in the West where it has been westernised to include vulnerable stress areas of the body to include the shoulders, upper arms and neck. This makes the technique become more of a stress management technique rather than just a system to stimulate the head and improve hair growth and condition. It can be practiced in quite a short time and be very effective.