What is Shiatsu?
Shiatsu is said to be a sort massage which can be achieved by integrates simple points, clothes and pressure. In Japanese, it is interpreted to be “finger pressure”. It is a physical remedy that helps the ability of the body to cure and restore itself. It is a particular method of healing impact that usually provides support to the body in most times of our life.
This system of healing is usually used in Japan. It involve some techniques such as massaging, pressurizing, calming, and supported stretching. This process is usually carried out through a comfortable clothing in the absence of oil. Even though this health care system of healing make use of the available resources in the body for revitalization, nevertheless, it has its own weakness and strength.
The scientist believed that shiatsu is not an effective medical treatment, but the fact still remain that this system of healing is widely used in Japan and has been modernized. It is also regulated by the government through the Ministry of Health and Welfare. Also in United State, it is one of the major therapies in many Asian bodywork remedy.
It is a process that is very effective and easy to learn. It is just like the treatment of pain or disease by inserting the tips of needles at specific points on the skin, shiatsu helps to strengthen the essential energy in the body which is usually called Ki or Qi. Though it has a soothing and relieving effect, but its active and energetic effect cannot be underestimate. It helps the body to readapt or reset itself so that natural healing of the body can take place by strengthening the patient to be more conscious of his mind.
The main therapy used in Japan is shiatsu. Although there is a research that is being conducted on shiatsu but the report of the research might not be accessible by the Americans because the reports are usually published in Japanese language. Researches are also going on in Europe on the effectiveness of shiatsu while several schools has also involve themselves in research studies for shiatsu. However, the proof of shiatsu effectiveness is limited but the risk is very low too.
Shiatsu has been in existence many years ago in Japan before it was now validated into its modern figure. The effective use of this process requires basic indigenous Chinese knowledge for its theoretic base. It is now widely in used, specifically in United Kingdom and other part of the globe.
The process of shiatsu is tailored for individual’s needs. Initially, some people might begin their process at the interval of 14 – 21 days interval and they may later decide to come once in a month. The interval might also be according to how they need it of which it can be 42 – 56 days sometimes. However, when the situation is serious and severe, there’s need for them to come on weekly basis until they start feeling better.
It is worthwhile to note that shiatsu itself does not heals, but it enhance the rate at which the body repair itself. The sole aim and purpose of shiatsu is to give support to the natural healing ability of the body by enabling the patient’s energy to circulate in a balanced form.
Shiatsu practitioner are usually in contact with their patient but it does not really mean that they are influencing their own energy rather that of their customer. In Western method of “lay of hands”, the healing energy is usually transferred from the practitioner to the customer but it doesn’t work that way in shiatsu.
How Does Shiatsu Work?
Our breathing, exercises, stretches and various kind of massage we engage our body in provide assistance to our wellbeing. This various body works are so important to our health that undervaluing will only result to our own disadvantage. Though it is impossible to isolate the body from the mind but the way we feel are usually affected by our physical health.
Diagnosis is not usually phrased in terms of Western and pathology medicine but it plays an important role in shiatsu. A shiatsu practitioner might not be able to tell you that you have high level of cholesterol or high level of glucose in your body, but he may say that you have water or earth energy instability. Diagnosis in shiatsu is more of holistic instead of analytical because it takes into consideration the response of the customer or patient, the noticed behavior forms as well as the physical appearance and touch.
Some shiatsu practitioner can start with a mild tactual exploration of the abdominal part of the body. In Japanese, this part of the body is called the “hara” and it is a very important region in shiatsu diagnosis. This is because it is centralized, lenient and unprotected when compared to some other parts of the body and that elusive instabilities usually reveal themselves in this part of the body.
The next step is for the practitioner to act based on the first diagnosis. According to the visual and the physical reaction the practitioner gathered, he might make use of some other techniques such as moving of the joint, rocking, and stretching in order to even out the observed unstable energy by applying mild pressure on the meridians.
Just like the diagnosis, treatment using shiatsu is also holistic. Instead of concentrating on where the symptoms are clearly observed, the practitioner has to work on the whole body. During the process, it is advisable to close your eyes, ease your muscles and stoop speaking. This is because shiatsu work effectively when you are relaxed or in a comfortable state. If any movement is required, it will be done by the practitioner and unless it is very important for you to talk, you are advised to remain silent. Whenever you are not comfortable, inform your practitioner so that you will not lose the benefit of that moment.
Remember, the aim of shiatsu is to evenly spread energy around your body so as to ease tensed part of the body as well as strengthening the weak part of the body. Therefore, it is very difficult for shiatsu to leave a harmful effect on you. It is problematic to move the energy in the wrong direction but once the shifting of the energy starts, the patient will felt a pleasant feeling.
In a situation whereby the client has a low energy, the shiatsu practitioner make use of particular methods to improve and revitalize the Qi. Perhaps the customer is stressed up, nervous, and wound – up, the shiatsu specialist will make use of some methods to disseminate the surplus energy. Shiatsu helps to promote god health, reinstate and maintain stability, as well as improve conditions. By so doing, the Qi of the body is controlled.
In order to maintain a healthy state and improve one’s energy, there is need to have a regular maintenance of shiatsu’s program. Just as we’ve discussed before, that the schedule of the program varies for each individual. While some might engage in a shiatsu session in a month and it work well for them, some might require the shiatsu sessions on a regular basis or at a low intervals.
Styles of Shiatsu
There are various style of shiatsu. Numerous former shiatsu experts developed their own style of shiatsu. Some even go to the extent of establishing schools that assist the establishment of shiatsu as a therapy. One of these people is Shizuto Masunaga.
Recently, there have be different approaches to shiatsu and as the days are breaking, new approaches are being generated for shiatsu treatment by various practitioners. Some practitioners influence the Ki in the body by focusing generally on work on the body or along the tracts which the energy pass through so as to influence the Ki that passes through them. Some other practitioners focus on the acupressure.
In general, what is similar to all these styles of shiatsu is that their aim is to manipulate the Ki. Other styles of shiatsu include diagnostic system like the macrobiotic approach or the 5 element system. In Britain, the commonest style of shiatsu are the Zen shiatsu, healing shiatsu, hara shiatsu, macrobiotic or barefoot shiatsu, movement shiatsu, Jin Shin Do, Nippon shiatsu, oha shiatsu, Tao shiatsu, water shiatsu, tsubo shiatsu, quantum shiatsu, etc.
Uses of Shiatsu
Shiatsu have found a lot of application to the benefit of our health. For example, it is well known for its stress reducing capability. It is also used for relieving nausea and vomiting. In addition to this, it helps in relieving muscular tension most especially in the neck and the back region. It also help to enhance the circulation of blood in the body as well as boost the immune system. It’s sedating characteristics helps to relieve sleep disorder. It has found application in the treatment of diarrhea, bowel irregularity, dyspepsia, migraine, toothache, worry and anxiety, severe pain, depressive disorder, menstrual problems, as well as other GIT (Gastrointestinal tract) disorder. In a more extensive sense, it is believed that shiatsu improve the emotional welfare and the physical energy.
Benefit of Shiatsu over Massage
This is dependent on the style of shiatsu used and the experience of the practitioner. Below are few reasons why you should choose shiatsu over massage.
- Massage and shiatsu work hand in hand. That is, a massage expert can be a shiatsu specialist while a shiatsu can be a massage expert.
- Shiatsu is capable of addressing emotional disorders in a particular way than massage. Shiatsu make use of the meridians. Since emotions are kept in the body, all the emotions in the body can be dealt through all bodywork.
Note: It is very important you don’t eat too much before performing shiatsu. Also, ensure you have proper rest before the shiatsu.