What is Shiatsu?

I remember when I was studying Shiatsu, and one of the 3rd Years who had just graduated made a leaflet that always made me smile.  It asked the same question “What is Shiatsu?” and then said 

‘It’s not a dog….’  (with a picture of a Shih Tzu dog)

‘It’s not a kind of Japanese noodle’

‘It’s not a kind of Martial art’ 

with pictures of each.  I’ve seen other practitioners do versions of this too.  After all, when it can feel so amazing and works on so many levels of our being, how do we start to explain what Shiatsu is?  

The Facts

Shiatsu means finger pressure in Japanese, and originates in Japan.  It is based on the principles of Oriental medicine.  A practitioner focuses on working with the meridian channels to balance the vital energies of your body and being.  Meridians are channels that run all around the body.   They all have different qualities and roles in your health and well-being. 

Shiatsu practitioners use a mixture of acupressure and energy techniques.  This can also include gentle or stronger stretches and rotations to move the energy in the meridian channels.  They use gentle holding techniques to give the energies space to rebalance too.  

How it works

Shiatsu can be working at any or all of the different levels of your being, for example at:

a physical level you may have aching shoulders, neck and back

an emotional level you may be anxious or nervous

a mental level you may have endless lists, thoughts and reminders whirling around your head

a spiritual level you may be wondering if you will be able to achieve your life purpose, or maybe struggling to see your path in life clearly 

People seek out Shiatsu for specific symptoms or a number of problems, emotional ups and downs, not feeling like themselves, or feeling a loss of direction in their lives.  Also during big life changes like moving house, changing job, bereavement, divorce, children leaving home, parents needing care, menopause.  Or for specialist services to support menstrual health, fertility, pregnancy and new parenthood.

How often do you need to have Shiatsu?

Regular clients include Shiatsu as part of their health maintenance routine, like going to the gym.  Some clients just book whenever they feel they need Shiatsu for a top up.  

Clients often start out with sessions closer together, maybe every week or fortnight.  Then they space them out to their preferred frequency as part of their health care routine.  Or sessions may stay more frequent to help alleviate or support with on-going symptoms.  

Shiatsu gives you space to feel where you are at in yourself and your body.  You get space to notice what you are needing.  Or space to notice that you are just loving receiving Shiatsu and it is one of the calm, restoring spaces you want to have as a regular part of your life.  


Needing support or space in your life?  

Have a look at the Shiatsu Awareness Month special offers for 2018.