August 31, 2012 00:00
By PONGPHON SARNSAMAK
Thailand yesterday set a world record when 641 masseurs simultaneously practised holistic head-to-toe Thai massage on 641 people for 12 minutes.
The move is aimed at promoting Thai massage and luring foreign tourists with the promise of traditional medical services.
Guinness World Records certified the record, which was set during an event held as part of the Thailand Medical Hub Expo 2012 at Nonthaburi province’s Impact Muang Thong Thani.
The previous record was set in Australia in 2010, when 263 masseurs kneaded flesh simultaneously for five minutes.
“I was happy that I was able to do it,” 87-year-old female masseur Pornpimol Panyawut said after participating in the record-setting massage.
Pornpimol has practised Thai massage in the southern province of Chumpon for 57 years. Her father taught her the skill when she was young.
“Thai massage is our heritage and we have to pass it on to other generations,” she said.
Thai spa and massage services are world renowned and generate Bt12 billion in revenue per year.
There are about 1,436 spas certified by the Public Health Ministry, which will be classified into three internationally recognised levels: platinum, gold and silver. Now there are certified up to 33 international spas and there are certified 400 hours healthy massage up to 50,000 masseurs.