Shiatsu is a comprehensive bodywork modality using the same theory as acupuncture, but offering a very different received experience.
It is an ancient Japanese treatment that is traditionally received fully-clothed on a futon, on the floor. If required it can also be done on a treatment table. Due to the type of gentle pressure and rhythmic flow, the patient drops into deep state of relaxation while simultaneously releasing physical and emotional tension. Like a beautiful, slow yoga session, minus the effort.
To begin with, the practitioner assesses a patient’s pulse before gently connecting with the abdomen to diagnose any imbalances in the meridians of the body. This in itself feels very relaxing, as all touch in Shiatsu is both diagnostic and therapeutic. The practitioner then begins to apply rhythmic and grounding pressure along the particular meridians in need of support or balance.
In line with the principles of yin and yang, where one meridian is in need of support (a lack of vitality or flow) another will need releasing (stagnation or blockage). And thus an elegant treatment picture emerges, allowing a patient to receive a dynamic, whole-body treatment, that restores health and harmony.
Shiatsu is tailored to each individual and my unique style can also include cupping, Sotai (Japanese osteopathic realignment), acupuncture and moxabustion, to improve clinical outcomes. My patients come for management of injuries, digestion issues, sleep issues, mental health, menstrual health, stress and so on. The wonder of this modality is its ability to be utilized for many conditions AND leave the patient feeling deeply revived and refreshed on a physical, mental and emotional level.
In a world of increasing screen time and longer to-do lists, rest, receptivity and nurturing touch is rare. Research shows that lack of touch can lead to a range of physical and mental illnesses, and of course the inverse is also true. This is something I am deeply passionate about, especially as we come out of a long period of social isolation and increased stress.
I believe shiatsu’s beauty is in its peaceful simplicity and connection; as we are all part of nature, gentle touch, peace and simplicity can remind us of this, enabling us to feel ourselves again. What a gift.
Xx Dr Nicky Brooks (TCM)