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About Shiatsu Treatments FAQs

Are there any times when Shiatsu should be avoided?

Shiatsu is a very safe therapy, but you should inform your practitioner of any condition that has been diagnosed by your doctor. Shiatsu should be avoided in case of infectious disease, internal bleeding, or clots, and any acute feverish illness.

Can I have Shiatsu if I am having other complementary or alternative therapy?

Yes, although it is generally best to leave at least a few days between different treatments to let the effects settle in. If you have any concerns about mixing treatments, please discuss them with your practitioner.

Can I receive Shiatsu when I am pregnant?

Yes. Shiatsu is safe and supportive during and after pregnancy. You should let your practitioner know so that they can adjust your treatment accordingly 

Do I have to be unwell to receive Shiatsu?

No. People can receive Shiatsu purely for relaxation and enjoyment.

How many sessions will be needed?

How many treatments does the receiver needs, may vary from person to person. It is often possible to have significant changes just after the first session, whereas in other cases a longer series of treatments may be necessary, agreed with the client. Many people use shiatsu as ongoing care, coming about once a month to keep their energy in balance and to support their health and well-being.

Is Shiatsu covered by my Extended Health Care Plan?

Some private insurers do offer coverage for shiatsu. Health Shield is one of the Health Insurance companies who have this kind of service. We suggest that a claimant check with their private insurance plan or extended health care coverage first to see if they offer this coverage.

Is Shiatsu massage?

Shiatsu is a deeply relaxing holistic therapy that treats the whole body using a wide range of techniques. Frequently stretching and rotation are used to improve the benefit of Shiatsu along with finger pressure and palms. A combination of pressure points, gentle manipulation and stretching is used to re-energise weak areas and reduce tension in the body. 

Is Shiatsu painful? 

Shiatsu is deeply restful, it doesn’t hurt. 

What are Meridians?

Chinese medicine understands that as well as the physical anatomy and physiology which we are familiar with, our body also has an energetic landscape. This includes a system of meridians, sometimes called channels or pathways.  A shiatsu giver will use these to diagnose, interpret and to plan your treatment and they do this by a multisensory engagement with the client.

What happens during a treatment?

At the beginning of the session, the practitioner evaluates the client to determine the patterns of imbalance that may be present. It is important to assess the "state of the Ki" in order for the practitioner to give the client the most effective therapeutic session. Then the practitioner designs a plan that will give the client the most therapeutic benefit according to their individual needs. A session usually begins with a discussion about your health and wellbeing, and how you're feeling at the moment. This would include any specific problems you have, and your intentions for what you would like to change. We may also talk about your work, family, eating and exercise patterns. You'll have the opportunity to ask me any questions you may have. On your first visit this takes longer than on subsequent visits, so we schedule a longer session.

Shiatsu uses a variety of manual techniques, including pressure, kneading, soothing, tapping, and stretching to access the vital Ki of the body. In the case where the client's energy is low or deficient, the practitioner uses specific techniques to enhance and vitalise the Ki. When the client is over-stressed, wound-up, or anxious, the practitioner employs techniques to disperse the "excess" energy. In this way, the Ki is regulated. Shiatsu works to alleviate conditions, restore balance, and promote health.

Traditionally Shiatsu is practised on a futon at floor level but Shiatsu can also be received on a treatment table or chair.  During treatment pressure is applied to the meridians (energy pathways) and the practitioner will usually use a combination of stretches, massage, pressure points and gentle holding. Treatments are tailored to the individual and will be different for each client and each session.

A regular maintenance program of Shiatsu is an excellent way to maintain wellness and improve vitality. This schedule will vary for each person. One Shiatsu session per month may work well to maintain balance for some. But for others, a high-stress job, family demands, an overactive lifestyle, lack of exercise, or other factors may require Shiatsu sessions on a more regular basis.