Shiatsu, which literally means finger pressure in Japanese, was developed from traditional oriental massage. It works on the body’s energetic system, through the network of meridians relating to the functioning of our internal organs as well as our emotional, psychological and spiritual harmony.
Shiatsu occupies a place between Acupuncture (without needles), Massage (no oil and through clothing), Yoga (using stretching techniques) and Healing (touch). It offers the warmth of a caring touch in a safe environment and has a very distinctive feel which is unlike any other form of bodywork. It is practised at floor level, therefore both you and your practitioner feel very grounded; people often fall asleep during a session and afterwards feel very relaxed, with a sense of wellbeing and peace. Others may feel invigorated and ready to get up and go.
In a Shiatsu session, the practitioner uses pressure with thumbs, fingers, palms, and sometimes elbows, knees and feet. Therefore, a very close contact is established between you and your practitioner. The treatment is sometimes dynamic; sometimes very still. It involves pressure and stretching to facilite mobility of the limbs and joints, kneading to release tightness of muscles, and calming support on areas of weakness.
Who can benefit from Shiatsu?
Most people can benefit from Shiatsu as it is a therapy that treats the whole body. Shiatsu has the unique ability to treat and diagnose at the same time, so that even if you came with a stiff shoulder, you will soon realise that, whilst being helped in this particular area, your whole body will benefit from the treatment.
People come because of physical tension, or maybe going through emotional difficulties, needing stimulation or indeed calming down. People come for all sorts of reasons, as we are often out of touch with our bodies and our needs, and Shiatsu can help to re-establish this contact.
Receiving Shiatsu can also be a very good way of preventing problems arising and of maintaining your wellbeing. Some people like to have the occasional top-up session; others prefer to have regular treatments: it all depends on your own state of health and also what you hope to gain from the treatments. Like with your car, put some petrol in when needed, give it a regular service , and make sure it has its annual MOT !
About the treatment
The session usually take place on a padded mat on the floor (although it is possible to receive Shiatsu on a specially designed chair). You remained fully clothed and it is advisible to wear comfortable warm loose clothing. Following the treatment, there can be a feeling of increased vitality and you may feel invigorated, yet relaxed on a deep level.
Benefits of Shiatsu
- It relaxes mind and body
- It restores and balances energy
- It eases tension and stiffness
- It improves breathing
- It improves posture
- It improves circulation
- It enhances well being