Shiatsu is a traditional Japanese therapy that is based on the application of localized pressure by the action of the fingers and palms of the therapist on the patient, Shi means finger and Atsu means pressure. There are two main Shiatsu schools: one based on Western anatomical and physiological theory and the other based on Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). Chinese medicine came to Japan over a thousand years ago, around the sixth century and thereafter he occupied a central place in Japanese culture. There are several ancient Chinese texts, including the I-Ching or "Book of Changes" where the theory of Yin-Yang and the Five Elements are reflected. The Nei-Jing, is divided into two parts: the Su-Wen, dealing with physiology, pathology, etiology, hygiene, etc., and Ling-Chou, which studies the principle of meridians and physical therapies. These papers were the foundation of the oriental therapeutic practice that focused on four areas: acupuncture, moxibustion, herbal medicine and massage therapy. Tokujiro Namakoshi founded the Japan Shiatsu College in 1940 and organized a form of shiatsu therapy based on Western anatomy and physiology. Shiatsu is regulated as a medical therapy in Japan by the Ministry of Health and Welfare, and elsewhere by various supervisory bodies established by professionals who practice shiatsu. Shiatsu is evolving and its various styles incorporate (to differing degrees) aspects of traditional Japanese massage, traditional Chinese medicine, and Western anatomy and physiology.
Main therapeutic effects of Shiatsu:
- Removes physical and emotional stress.
- Improves overall body function.
- Balances the nervous system.
- Improves and eliminates spinal problems.
- Relieves joint ailments.
- Increases vitality.
- Balances breathing capacity.
- Produces a deep relaxation.
"Receiving shiatsu regularly prevents the accumulation or stress and toxins that can trigger the onset of organ dysfunction"