Experience Tradition at UR Spa with the Dusun Inan Body Therapy

Where they will work, work, work, on you.

Days of toiling behind the computer can leave one pretty sore. Of course, there are plenty of massage centres around town that can scratch the itch—or in my case, work away at the aching muscles—but why settle for run-of-the-mill services when you can book a trip to total relaxation at UR Spa, The Ruma Hotel and Residences. Ahead, we review the Dusun inan body therapy served at the urban sanctuary.

But first, a little history. The storied method of massage hails from a Northern Borneo local tribe called the Lotud Dusuns, where the women unveiled the ways to ease their aches from the days in the sun, working the paddy fields. Through generations, this effective massage style has more than survived; it has thrived. Now an award-winning treatment, it has found a home in Kuala Lumpur’s UR Spa. Offered in options of 60 minutes and 90 minutes, you too can experience the traditional therapy right at the heart of the city—all without flying to Kota Kinabalu, Sabah to get a taste of it.

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In a cosy room with a tranquil view, the massage begins with the gentle smell of the spa’s signature blend of oils that are both relaxing and invigorating. Then it’s time to get into it. Prior to the service, a staff member noted that I wished to focus on my lower back, a choice I made because of all those hours at the desk. Plus, a good posture is not really my strong suit.

Translated directly, urut inan means “thumb” massage. For those who may not be familiar with the magic touch, expect some serious pressure application to reach even the deepest of knots. Of course, you can let the therapists know of your preference, but personally, the standard practice worked wonderfully well. At the beginning of the treatment, the therapist began with traditional Dusunic body stretching, which is a technique to relax the muscles in preparation.

On the massage table, they concentrated on my area of concert, but also did not skip the primary zones of the massage technique, which are the neck and shoulders. The gentle stretches began from the shoulders all the way down to the glutes, and they are followed up with cross-stretching along the middle of the spine in an upward path. It was repeated until there were literally no more knots, and you would feel brand new.

I also spoke to a specialist, former President of the Association of Malaysian Spas, Datin Dr Jeannette Tambakau, who remains passionate about keeping this tradition alive. She spoke of the many benefits you can get from this particular massage over a conventional one, noting that you will find improved sleep quality, total muscle tension relief (which I definitely experienced as soon as I hopped off the massage table), enhanced blood circulation, and of course, a rush of relaxation that’s unlike any other.

“You can tell you’ve received the best Dusun inan body therapy service when you’re hit with a profound sense of relaxation and rejuvenation, and a heightened sense of well-being,” she noted. “For most people, enjoying this therapy once a week or bi-weekly can provide optimal benefits in terms of stress relief. It’s beneficial for everyone, particularly those with high-stress lifestyles. Even athletes and recovering individuals may find urut inan massage helpful in promoting muscle recovery and enhancing flexibility.”

One thing is for sure—I will definitely be seeking out another session of this because though I cannot escape the eight-hour sedentary lifestyle, I sure can escape to UR Spa when I have the chance.