Health Benefits of Shiatsu Massage
Shiatsu massage is a form of ancient Oriental acupressure massage designed to help people maintain balance, improve the flow of energy all over the body, heal injuries, It can release tension and achieve a healthy overall well being.
In Japanese, it means “finger pressure”. It relies on fingers, palm and feet to apply point pressure, adjust the energies or ‘chi’ and enhance the healing of the body. Despite its alleged benefits, they are not entirely proven by modern medical studies, most people who have actually tried it vouch that it can help anyone with physical or emotional and mental issues.
It started in ancient China but was later introduced to Japan and other Asian countries where it is widely practiced until today. In 1940, Japanese Shiatsu College was opened by Tokujiro Namikoshi which trains its students techniques in shiatsu therapy. Its health benefits became widespread and popular in other countries worldwide.
With shiatsu massage, the individual doesn’t need to remove their clothing unlike other forms of massage. You can do this even with light garments sans the massage oils. It may also depend upon the client if they prefer to wear a robe or a sheet while being massaged.
It involves the use of thumb, palms, forearm, knees and feet to relieve aching and tired muscles with the recipient lying on a futon mat or on the floor. In this way, the massage therapist employ gravity and pressure during the massage to release the tension.
Shiatsu Massage Health Benefits
• It is non-invasive. Instead of using needles, it applies point pressure so the holistic approach for the mind and body is relatively safe for all ages.
• It releases tension and stress. Shiatsu is based on the theories of acupuncture where it realigns key meridian points of the body that reduces stresses and balances the energy or ‘qi’ circulating in the body.
• Alleviates aching muscle. It effectively stretches stiff and painful muscles to regain its strength.
• Treats insomnia. For those suffering from insomnia, shiatsu massage promotes healthy sleep. It helps to relax the parasympathetic system which results in calming the nerves and induce regular and healthy sleeping patterns.
• Gives relief to constipation. The point pressure from the hands and feet can help regulate digestion and eliminate digestive problems like constipation.
• Improve the immune system. Shiatsu massage allegedly can strengthen the immune system and boost its resistance against diseases.
• Stabilizes the flow of energy in the body. The massage therapist can correct unstable energy flow and maintain its balance to promote better physical and mental health.
Here’s a perfect example of shiatsu massage on a chair:
Tips for a Relaxing Shiatsu Massage
• Before starting the session with your therapist, try to relax and keep a positive outlook.
• Refrain from eating heavy meals prior to your shiatsu session.
• Make sure to arrive at least 20 minutes earlier than your scheduled session to fill in some forms about your health history, medical conditions, etc. It also allows to relax your body before you start.
• Consult with a professional shiatsu therapists. Make sure to choose one that has a license and with enough experience and skills to do the shiatsu massage.
• It is generally safe to anyone even for pregnant women. However, pregnant women should consult with their doctor before doing any types of massage. Those who recently had a surgery and suffering from tumors, open wounds, contagious sickness and other serious medical conditions should refrain from having shiatsu massage or until their doctor said so.
Have you tried Shiatsu massage? If so, how was it? Please comment below.
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I don’t know if this is the right place to ask this, but I’ve always found that I get over a cold much more quickly when I get a massage. Especially if I take it easy that day and drink a lot of water. Does that make sense?