Directory Of... BODY THERAPY




What is Shiatsu

What can you expect from a Shiatsu session

Questions about what a Shiatsu session involves

What are the main Qualifications a practitioner should have?

How to Find Shiatsu Therapists and Treatments near me



What is Shiatsu

Shiatsu is a holistic treatment that originated in Japan in the early 20th century. It is a form of bodywork that aims to influence the flow of “Ki” circulating in the body. The Japanese term “Ki” can be translated as energy or vital life force. When the flow of Ki is hindered, symptoms of ill heath appear. Some of the ways shiatsu treatment harmonizes a patients Ki, is through the meridian system and acupuncture points along these channels.

Shiatsu was developed from older, traditional Oriental massage techniques, incorporating knowledge of anatomy and physiology from Western medicine. Since then shiatsu has evolved into many different styles. Some focus more on pressure to points, others work mainly on the meridians to affect the flow of Ki in the body. All practitioners use diagnostic theories based on principles of Oriental medicine.

Shiatsu in Japanese means, “finger pressure” although the palms, arms, elbows, knees and feet are often utilized to apply pressure. Gentle manipulations of the joints and stretches are used to increase mobility and flexibility. Shiatsu is a deeply relaxing experience, can be given to maintain well being or to help with many types of health complaints.



What can you expect from a Shiatsu session

Treatment takes place on a futon on the floor with the patient fully clothed. Shiatsu can also be given in a seated position and patients with limited mobility can sit in a chair. Your whole body will be treated, mainly with applied pressure and may include stretches, manipulation of the joints and limbs. You can expect a deep sense of relaxation and well being after treatment. Shiatsu can also help with many health conditions and support patients going through change.

Research on conditions treated with shiatsu can be found at:



Questions about what a Shiatsu session involves

- Do I need to buy any equipment?


- What to wear

Loose, comfortable clothing.

- How long is a session

45 mins – 1 hour. The first session is usually longer to incorporate taking details of your current and past health issues, medication and diagnostic signs.

- What is expected of clients (e.g. you lie down and do nothing... or you do gentle stretching exercise etc)?

During the treatment you lie down or sit and the practitioner will administer the treatment. It is beneficial if you close your eyes and try to relax otherwise you may create resistance to the natural movements of the body. Your practitioner may advise you on lifestyle issues, diet and exercises to support the treatment and your healing process.

Prior to treatment, do not eat heavily or drink alcohol for at least 2 hours. After the treatment drink plenty of water and avoid stressful activity.

- Average costs / fees per session

£40 - £80 depending on experience and location

What are the main Qualifications a practitioner should have?

The Shiatsu Society is the largest umbrella organization for professional shiatsu practitioners. Practitioners have a minimum of 3 years part-time training from a Shiatsu Society registered school and are insured through the organization.

Some practitioners are multidisciplinary and may not be listed because they are already registered with other professional bodies i.e.: British Acupuncture Council. Many shiatsu schools also have their own register.




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