Shiatsu is a clothed/covered form of bodywork done either on a futon on the floor or a low table.
The translation of "Shiatsu" is "Finger pressure". Shiatsu is not solely finger pressure though. The practitioner will also use palms, forearms, knees, feet, shins and thumbs.
By using Shiatsu on particular parts of the body, following meridian channel theory and pressure points along those channels, the practitioner aims to aid the body in rediscovering its natural energetic flow and therefore move back to a place of health and ease rather than dis-ease.
Shiatsu may assist in the prevention of a range of conditions such as gynaecological, digestive, headaches, muscle pain, stress, insomnia and many more.
When receiving Shiatsu it is beneficial to wear loose, comfortable clothes so that there is no slipping or restriction with stretches or positions the body needs to be in for the practitioner to access the channel with ease.
A Shiatsu treatment most often runs for a minimum of an hour and is most commonly started on the back (yang) side of the body to help disperse tension and help the client destress before receiving work in the front (yin) side of the body. At this point the practitioner often will work the tummy (hara) which can help guide the rest of the treatment based on where the tension sits within the hara.
The practitioners intention when treating is to meet the tension in the body, this pressure can often be quite deep and therefore cause long lasting relief and moving tension that has been held for a while. This can cause a state of calm and sometimes leave the receiver feeling quite energised for the day. It all depends on why the body has been holding on to tension.
Shiatsu is great for circulation and with circulation we bring healing properties held in the blood to areas that are in need.
Oriental therapy options below
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Cupping is a technique using glass cups that have been applied to the skin using fire or using a pump to create suction. The skin will raise and often be discoloured and/or bruised, this is a normal response that may last over a week. In this technique oil can be applied onto the skin.
Cupping is beneficial for releasing stagnation, fascial tension, muscle tension and a variety of other issues.
Gua Sha also known as spooning or scraping is a technique where a tool such as a spoon, coin or specialised tool is used to scrap the skin and remove stagnation, break down tension and increase circulation. This technique may leave discolouration and/or bruising on the treated area; this is normal and may last over a week.
Acupressure is used throughout shiatsu as well as on it's own. It is performed using finger pressure on meridian points along the channels of the body to help relieve symptoms of disharmony in the body.
Oil fusion Bodywork
This treatment modality is a fusion of Shiatsu, LomiLomi, oriental therapies and also taking inspiration from my other bodywork experiences and explorations. The outcome is a treatment style that is ideal for the individual who enjoys both the therapeutic benefits of Shiatsu (meridian massage) and oil based bodywork such as LomiLomi.
I use a meridian focus mixed with intuitive listening and let all but intention melt away to just follow the body's all knowing self and aid to facilitate deep relaxation, release stubborn tension and sometimes even for some there can be a strong emotional release.
My absolute priority is to create a safe space for clients to feel able to fully let go of whatever they might be holding on to internally and always work within the predetermined guidelines so the client can let go knowing they are held and supported free from judgment or expectation.
This goes for any kind of bodywork I do, holding a safe space for a client to experience their session in a nurturing way should be paramount to any and all therapeutic modalities.
With this in mind, if someone comes to see me in clinic for oil based bodywork, we may have a longer discussion prior to the treatment to define the parameters, so as to achieve a better understanding of what is needed during and even after the session for an optimum sense of care.
The treatment is performed on a massage table where the receiver starts by lying undressed under a sheet then the practitioner uncovers the receiver apart from their groin and midline of the buttocks. The treatment starts on the client's back (yang) of the body to firstly release tension and relax, but also to give the body a chance to prepare for the more vulnerable front (yin) side of the body, where we often hold much emotional armour because we protect our organs and therefore our life force. Emotional and physical release can happen on both sides of the body and can happen more on one side than the other of course depending on what is presenting.
The body is very intelligent and interconnected in so many ways and on so many levels, we should look at it in such a way.
Once we understand the level of interconnection and communication within our body and psyche then we can really start to let things change and progress.
The treatment involves holding, sliding, stretching, pressure from elbows, hands, thumbs, knees and, if or when relevant, guided breathing, visualisation and some discussion.
For this style of work it is recommended to book for an hour and a half minimum to get optimum results.
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