Shiatsu is a free standing natural healthcare system which originated in Japan, and is influenced by Chinese and more recently Western knowledge. It derives its theoretical and practical roots from the ancient traditions of Far Eastern philosophies and healing and the holistic understanding of life and health based upon them.

The aim of shiatsu is to stimulate and support the processes of natural self healing, well-being and personal growth and to maintain health through balancing the energetic system of a person. The method uses the application of pressure and of energetic and physical touch to the body’s energy channels and points to balance the circulation of the body’s energy (Ki or Chi). As a self-regulating health care and health promotion system it supports the development of a new holistic understanding of health in Europe.

Philosophical Background
Shiatsu derives its theoretical and practical roots from the ancient traditions of Far Eastern healing and philosophy. Today it is an autonomous treatment method which originated in Japan, and is influenced by Chinese and Western knowledge.

Aim
The aim of shiatsu is to promote the processes of self healing and personal growth through balancing the circulation of the body’s energy: Ki or Chi. The well being of a person as a unity of body, mind and spirit depends on the harmonic flow of this energy.

Principles
Shiatsu treatment is a form of communication through touch, based on techniques of energetic evaluation.

Form
The form of shiatsu treatment is the application of sustained pressure with thumbs, hands, elbows, knees and feet to meridians and tsubo and to other energetic and physical structures. The form also includes rotations and stretches of limbs, joints and meridians. The posture and awareness of the practitioner are grounded in the abdomen or Hara. Shiatsu is usually given on a soft mat on the floor.

Effects
Shiatsu supports and nourishes life-force, enhances sensitivity, increases self awareness and releases tension.

Application
Applied by a practitioner with appropriate training, shiatsu promotes general well being and can be used as a preventative health care method. It can also assist people through crisis, difficult life phases and processes of change. It can treat people presenting with a wide variety of physical conditions.