kati Vasti General Health/Immunity
Kati Vasti for Back Pain: The Complete Guide
JULY 11, 2023

About Kati Vasti

Lower back pain can affect your life in ways you can’t imagine. It might make everyday tasks difficult and keep you from doing things you love, such as playing with your pet or enjoying a bike ride.

The worst thing about lower back pain is that it’s a recurring issue, especially if you have a physically active lifestyle.

Fortunately, popping painkillers is not the only option for treating excruciating back pain. You can rely on ancient Ayurvedic treatments to manage your lower back pain without facing any side effects.

Kati Vasti is one of the most notable treatments for lower back pain and other lumbosacral conditions. This ancient Ayurvedic therapy uses herbal oil and specialized massage techniques to treat the problem at the source and provide long-term relief. The basic premise of kati vasti is to use heated oil to improve blood circulation in the pain-stricken area. The treatment focuses on the lower back and can be tailored to meet individual requirements.

Kati Vasti is a traditional spa treatment for men and women that addresses lower back pain and helps manage the symptoms of more complex lumbosacral issues, such as slipped disc, lumbar spondylosis, and various spinal problems. The treatment is prescribed in ancient Ayurveda texts and is ‌performed by a certified practitioner in a purpose-built setting.

Kati Vasti might offer instant relief and reduce flare-ups if you struggle with lower back pain. It's an external therapy that lasts 60 to 90 minutes, depending on your health condition.

How is Kativasti performed

 Kativasti

Kati Vasti involves retaining heated medicated oil over the lower back inside a frame made of dough.

Kati Vasti is performed using medicated oils, followed by a gentle, targeted massage to soothe inflamed tissues, release muscle knots and relieve pain and stiffness.

Kati Vasti is a specialized treatment that requires very few supplies. Here’s what’s required to perform kati vasti as per the ancient Ayurveda texts:

  • A massage table with a cushion for the head
  • Gram flour dough
  • Medicated oil

Here's how it is performed:

  • The recipient lies down on the massage table, facing down.
  • The practitioner will locate the pain area and create a frame of gram flour dough around it.
  • The next step is to pour and hold warm medicated oil inside the dough frame for a few minutes.
  • As soon as the oil cools down, the frame is removed, and the oil is rubbed across the lower back using specialized kneading techniques.

Kati Vasti Benefits

This oil pooling treatment has several benefits besides treating lower back pain. Here are some of the main health benefits you may get from kati vasti ayurvedic treatment:

Treats numbness in limbs

With sciatica, caused by compression of the sciatic nerve, back pain might radiate to legs, causing numbness or tingling sensation. The kati vasti treatment targets the root cause of sciatica and reduces its effects on other body parts.

Relieves stiffness

Lower back pain can often restrict your movement and reduce joint flexibility, making everyday tasks seem like a mountain. Kati basti can help ease stiffness in the lower back and allow you to twist and bend without feeling pain or crackling in joints. With regular sessions, you may get rid of lower back issues once and for all.

Also read: Ayurveda for Back Pain: Remedies, Medicines & More!

Soothes inflamed nerves

The herniated disc keeps pressing on the nerve until it becomes inflamed and cause pain. Those inflamed nerves rarely return to normal and worsen as the herniated disc problem progresses. Kati vasti can be a complementary therapy to soothe inflamed nerves and relieve excruciating pain.

Improves blood circulation

Kati vasti therapy is followed by gentle massage treatment. Even when performing kati vasti at home, it is essential to get a soothing massage afterward to realize the maximum benefits of the treatment. The gentle kneading strokes that follow the treatment help improve blood circulation and release muscle knots that may have affected your movement.

Recommended Oils for Kati Vasti

Kati Vasti offers maximum benefits when performed with the right type of oil. Using a herbal oil with anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties is more likely to relieve pain and discomfort than regular mustard or coconut oil. Here are some of the herbal oil formulations that are highly recommended for the Kati Basti treatment.

Sahacharadi thailam

Sahacharadi thailam by Kerala Ayurveda packs the goodness of Sahachara, Dashamula, and Manjishtha. While Sahachara and Manjistha are known for their analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties, Dashamula is a combination of ten herbs that offer a variety of benefits.

This herbal oil can help ease muscle stiffness that may have become chronic because of long hours of sitting and slouching in front of your computer. It is also an excellent remedy for lower back pain caused by fatigue, injury, or poor sleeping/riding/walking posture.

Sahacharadi thailam is an excellent choice for Ayurvedic therapies, such as kati vasti for sciatica, slip disc, and back pain, to name a few. The oil's soothing effect can relieve your lower back and help you return to being you.

Mahanarayana thailam

This herbal formulation by Kerala Ayurveda addresses sore muscles and joint issues, especially the ones caused by fatigue. If you are experiencing lower back pain or muscle stiffness due to post-workout fatigue, Mahanarayana thailam should be your top pick for a kati basti therapy. The oil works best when slightly heated and retained over the affected area for 15-20 minutes. The oil is fortified with some of the most potent herbs known for their anti-inflammatory properties. Plus, the oil smells nice when heated, making your kati vasti session a more enjoyable experience.

This powerful blend of Shatavari, Bala, and other anti-inflammatory herbs can strengthen your muscles, enhance their mobility, and eliminate pain at the source. Using this oil for your kati vasti therapy can help prevent recurrence and make your muscles more resilient against fatigue and injury.

How to Prepare for Kati Vasti

The kati basti procedure requires you to follow specific pre-operative instructions to maximize your session.

  • Get an X-ray or MRI scan of your lower back so your practitioner can locate the problem area and know where to place the frame for oil pooling.
  • Empty your bowels and bladder before your session to avoid discomfort or interruption to your kati basti procedure.
  • Let your practitioner know of any underlying health condition so your treatment is conducted accordingly.
  • Before the procedure starts, make yourself comfortable on the massage bed. You may ask for a pillow or cushion to prevent prolonged strain on your neck.

Which Is The Best Place To Undergo Kati Vasti

While undergoing Kati vasti or any other Ayurveda therapy, selecting a place that provides authentic Ayurveda treatments is crucial. Choose a place that offers traditional Kerala treatments and has qualified Ayurvedic physicians and well-trained therapists. They should use quality herbs and oils and ensure proper hygiene. The Centre should provide customized treatment plans tailored to suit your health goals. The doctors should assess your health conditions daily to make necessary changes in your diet and regimen. They should guide you about post-therapy care to help maintain the benefits of Kati vasti.

Kerala Ayurveda has several treatment centers and wellness resorts that provide quality care and help you start your wellness journey. With well-equipped treatment centers, qualified Ayurveda doctors, and trained therapists, Kerala Ayurveda is your go-to solution for quality care. If you want a more immersive experience, visit Ayurvedagram, Bangalore; Ayurvedagram, Bali or The Health Village, Kochi.

Frequently Asked Questions

When performed using specialized herbal oils, such as Sahacharadi thailam and Mahanarayana thailam, kati basti can effectively soothe pain and relieve inflammation. The results also depend on how experienced your practitioner is and how frequently you get the treatment.

Since kati basti is an external therapy involving oil retention over the lower back, followed by a gentle massage, there are no known side effects.

Avoid taking a cold shower immediately after the therapy. Refrain from engaging in physical-intensive chores and take ample rest to let the healing effects of kati basti prevail longer.

The kati vasti oil is ‌retained for 15 to 30 minutes. The temperature of the oil is maintained by removing a small quantity of oil and reheating it. The duration of the treatment may also vary depending on the patient’s health condition.

The oil is ‌heated within the body's tolerance limits. Heating the oil to this temperature has two benefits. First, the properties of the herbs elevate at this temperature, increasing the treatment's efficacy. Secondly, the warmth helps soothe inflamed tissues and relieve pain.




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