When clients call me to book a Shiatsu massage and ask me what it involves, I never feel like I’ve quite got the full picture across. I’ve come to accept that that’s ok! You can never fully explain in words what a Shiatsu massage feels like, you have to experience it. Even if I could explain what it’s like for me, your own experience will be different and unique to you.
Before I try to explain, and before I fall short of truly getting across verbally the deep sense of relaxation and arriving home that you may feel … I’ll let clients speak for themselves. Here are some comments people have said as they rise from the floor after their Shiatsu :
‘Wow, that was amazing, I know you tried to explain what it would be like but you really have to experience it to understand … like, wow, I haven’t felt this relaxed since … I really can’t remember how long it’s been’.
‘I didn’t realise how tense my shoulders were until you put your hands on them. I could feel them melting. I didn’t know I was holding them, until I let go of them.’
‘I could feel the tension around my head melt away.’
‘That’s the first massage I’ve ever had that didn’t hurt me and yet my hips feel released.’
‘I felt a release of a blockage, in my belly, I felt a warm glow moving down towards my feet’.
‘I was totally zoned out. I haven’t been that relaxed for a very long time.’
‘My body felt all wonky before I came in and now I feel like every things back to normal.’
Ok so what do I do? I gently use the palms of my hands to pulse pressure on and off your body, along the energy pathways called meridians. Scientifically, meridians have now been shown to flow along paths of least resistance to electro magnetic energy. Blockages or stagnations can occur, through physical injury of the body, emotional trauma which results in subconscious holding of muscles tightly or long term low levels of stress which cause muscles to tighten. I also use my fingertips or thumbs to hold acupressure points. Each acupressure point has a specific effect, so no two treatments will be the same. Each of the 12 meridians also have certain qualities and I choose which ones to work on depending on your symptoms or what I feel with my hands. I work along arms, legs, hands, feet, face, neck, torso and the back. It’s a holistic treatment so even if you come with sciatica or a painful right shoulder, I’ll focus on these areas but I’ll also work the rest of your body too.
You receive Shiatsu fully clothed on a special futon mattress at ground level.
Every outcome is different. The results can be physical and/or emotional. You may feel an immediate release of physical symptoms or you may experience a feeling of clarity which helps you to see what you need to change in your life in order to feel better, aid recovery or accept what is. This could be a change of circumstance, a job/career, more time with friends or family, an improvement in diet or exercise. Again, as a holistic treatment, the changes you feel, and the changes you implement as a result of Shiatsu will be unique to each individual.
What I can say is that Shiatsu invites your body to initiate it’s own healing. It invites you in a safe and nurturing way to see your body, to listen to what your body is trying to tell you. Your body never lies. If we can just take the time to tune in, to listen, and to give an honest reply then this is a huge step.
So whether it’s a once off deep relaxation treat, a programme of treatments over a number of weeks or a regular part of your self care during the year, your experience will be unique, supported and positive.