Shiatsu massage enhances body’s own healing abilities. Shiatsu massage originated in Japan and is a form of body massage based on traditional Chinese medicine. Shiatsu is not a typical massage technique and it is not solely used for muscle pain treatment, as that is the purpose of massage in Western medicine. The base of shiatsu treatment is the meridian system of the body. Meridians are energy tracks through which the life energy flows in our bodies. Many patients choose Shiatsu massage because it represents a natural approach to treatment of health issues, while promoting mental and physical well-being.
Shiatsu Massage does not only represent a relaxing experience, but also helps treat a variety of health issues. It can help with insomnia, digestive problems, poor posture, headaches, cough and colds, sprains, and of course, tensions in the neck, shoulders and back. Even if you do not seek to treat specific health complaints, Shiatsu massage is still beneficial and relaxing.
What are the principles of Shiatsu?
One of the basic concepts of Japanese and Chinese medicine is Qi*, the life energy in our body that underlies all functions. It is believed that Qi flows in paths called meridians and shiatsu therapist works to reach the Qi points along the meridians, called vital points. When there are no major health issues, these meridians are fulfilled with qi and its flow is unhindered.
When deficiency of Qi occurs in the meridians, our body will become unbalanced, which ultimately might lead to physical health complaints. Initially, there will be minor signs, such as regular colds, headaches, tension, muscle aches or indigestion. All of these signs may refer to the imbalance of Qi. Shiatsu stimulates and harmonizes the flow of Qi throughout the body.
The Shiatsu therapist is trained to recognize the energetic disharmony, even before physical symptoms appear. Simple, but subtle changes are signs of imbalance. However, the balance can be restored by regular shiatsu massages.
What sets Shiatsu treatment apart from other massage techniques?
Shiatsu massage technique is similar to treatment methods in osteopathy and physiotherapy. Shiatsu practitioners, however, associate physical health with the body’s natural energy flow. Therefore, the way symptoms are diagnosed and treated differs from other common massage therapies. Through gentle, deep-pressure massage, the treatment has a positive effect on your life energy.
Shiatsu can help you improve your self-perception. Shiatsu massage has been undergoing an extensive research and development for the past 40 years, and is now one of the widely used methods of body massage in the field of health and wellness. Shiatsu massage is even recommended by different doctors, therapy, prevention and health care centers.
Shiatsu can help you gain a different perspective about yourself, your past and present experiences. Better self-perception and self-awareness may help you manage your energy more efficiently, discover new inner resources, develop your existing one, and reach even a higher level of self- awareness.
How does the shiatsu massage work?
Shiatsu massage is a pressure massage that, according to Chinese traditional medicine, harmonises body, mind and soul, thereby activating the body’s ability to heal itself. Prior to beginning of shiatsu session, finding out “the state and the condition of your qi” is of a significant importance. Accordingly, the therapist will design a therapy plan, considering your individual needs.
In case of energy deficiency, the practitioner uses specific techniques to improve and vitalize Qi. If you are overworked, agitated, or anxious, shiatsu practitioner will utilise techniques to distribute your “excessive” energy. By doing this, the flow of energy in your body will be re-balanced.
Shiatsu massage is beneficial for relieving imbalanced state, restore balance in the body, and promote good health. Shiatsu practitioner is taught to massage less with muscle power, but more with body weight. The emphasis is the establishment of an energetic relationship between the practitioner and the client, which requires sensitivity and openness from both.
Regular use of Shiatsu massage helps you maintain your well-being and improve your vitality.
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*In traditional Chinese culture, qi is believed to be a vital force forming part of any living entity. Qi translates as “air” and figuratively as “material energy”, “life force”, or “energy flow.