Friday, October 17, 2008


A good response is welcome and the very fact made me humble that people came up with very positive feedback. Suggestions to add up the pictures of procedure will be taken care of and will soon be added.

In present discussion I will be discussing another Upakarma called as Udwartanam, popularly known as dry powder massage.

Meaning and definition of udwartanam

The word Udwartanam is made up of two words

Ud + Wartan

Ud, means upward. While meaning of wartan is to perform. So, performing upward movement is called as Udwartanam.

Udwartanam is a procedure, in which dry powder of a medicine is rubbed on the body in a rigorous manner in order to create friction and increase body temperature. It’s one of the treatment effectively used in the weight management programmes. It gives an ample opportunity to work over the local area of fat deposition and at the same time can well be executed as a general treatment all over the body too. Though classics explain it as a very versatile treatment and with a little amendment in the material of the treatment it can well be used to put on the weight as well. As the spectrum of this treatment is quite wide, with a judicious use of different powders, it enables a physician to experiment this treatment in various diseases.

Types of Udwartanam

As I said earlier, Udwartanam as per the use of material has been divided in two types.

1. Ruksha Udwartanam - Dry friction type.

2. Snigdha Udwartanam - Wet friction type.

Though, as per the utility they differentiate from each other, but commonly udwartanam being used for weight management programmes, ruksha Udwartana is one which is most practiced.

Indications of Udwartanam

As Acharaya Vagabhatta mentions, indications of Udwartanam are as folloes:

Udawrtanam kaphaharam medaso pravilaayanam!

Sthirikaranam angaanaam, twak prasaad karam param!!

  1. Kapha haram- it pacifies kapha.

As a general understanding, the constitution of kapha is Water + Earth. Nature of udwartanam is dry and hence being opposite it works on kapha well depending upon the law of “Hras Hetu Visheshashcha”, i. e. for the reduction, opposite quality should be used.

  1. Medsah Pravilayanam- It melts down the Medo dhatu i. e. The fat.

As increased mobility of the skin due to the vigorous friction it tends to mobilise the fat deposition by working it out.

  1. Sathirikarnam anganam- Stabilises the body parts.

It corresponds to the excessive shakiness of fatty body parts in an obese person which is pretty visible in them. By reducing the fat over the specific body parts it firms and tones that area.

  1. Twaka prasaadkara- It provides nutrition to the skin.

Rubbing over the skin invites an increased blood supply to the local skin, which carries a lot of vital nutrients for the area with increased oxygenation to the part, giving the skin a better texture.

Contraindications of Udwartanam

Udwartanam should not be executed in following conditions:

§         Vata prakriti.

§         Vata diseases, specially in shuddha vata vikar i.e. nirupstambhita vata.

§         Lean and thin people.

§         Fatigue, dryness, dehydration.

§         Infectious skin disorders.

§         Hypersensitive skin.

§         Asthma patients.

§         Clients with pollen allergy.

P.S.- This procedure includes continuous rubbing of dry powder over the skin, it may produce some rashes over the skin, if not otherwise they are normal. In such a case treatment can be held for sometime and local application of coconut oil can be done for symptomatic relief.

Materials required

  1. Room sizing 10× 10 feet.
  2. Abhyanga table, same can be utilised for the Udwartanam.
  3. Dry powder as decided by the physician- 200 Gm.
  4. Expert masseurs – 3 for a better execution.
  5. Gas stove or a coil heater.
  6. Towel – 1.
  7. Changing dress for the client.
  8. Apron – 2 for masseurs.
  9. Soaking tissues – 4.
  10. Face mask- 4.
  11. Utensils for heating purpose.
  12. Temperature of the room should be optimum, neither too hot, nor too cold.
  13. A changing room.

Method of execution


  • Client should be briefed up with the procedure.
  • Dress should be provided for the change.
  • Face mask with nose clip should be given to the client and also be worn by the therapists.
  • Powder should be heated but not too hot.

Step 2

  • Client should be asked to lie over the back.
  • Rubbing of powder should be done in the opposite direction to the body hair. Excessive friction and pressure should be avoided. And client should be asked for his/ her comfort level.
  • Movements like hacking, squeezing, wringing, pinching can be added.
  • Can be executed in all seven different positions.
  • Procedure should be executed for the duration prescribed by the physician.

Step 3

  • Powder should be well cleaned and if prescribed should be subjected to the steam, if otherwise, hot water bath should be given.
  • Instruction chart should be handed over




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