Shiatsu: All You Need to Know About the Ancient Japanese Massage Technique

Shiatsu About

and Health

Shiatsu, derived from the Japanese language, is a combination of two words: “shi”, meaning finger, and “atsu”, meaning pressure. It is an ancient form of massage therapy that has its roots in the traditional medical practices of China and Japan. It is based on the idea that along our body pathways, otherwise known as meridians, there is a flow of energy, or “Qi”, which must be kept balanced in order for our bodies to remain healthy. Shiatsu massage is an effective way to maintain the balance of Qi and promote wellness.

What is Shiatsu Massage?

Shiatsu massage is a form of acupressure that uses fingers and palms, along with other tools, to apply pressure to specific points on the body, which helps to relieve pain and tension. The massage follows meridian lines throughout the body, and the pressure can be gentle or deeper based on your preference. Shiatsu massage also promotes better circulation of blood and lymph, which can help to reduce inflammation and further improve the body’s overall health.

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The Benefits of Shiatsu Massage

In addition to its stress-relieving effects, Shiatsu massage can also provide an array of health benefits, including:

  • Improved Circulation: Shiatsu massage helps to improve blood circulation, resulting in increased energy levels, better overall health, and even the ability to heal more quickly from injuries and illnesses.
  • Better Brain Function: The pressure and movements during Shiatsu massage help to stimulate the brain and can provide relief from mental fatigue, depression, and anxiety.
  • Reduced Tension: This type of massage helps to release tension build-up in your body and can reduce stress-related physical and mental symptoms such as headaches, tension headaches, and sleeplessness.
  • Improved Flexibility and Mobility: Shiatsu massage can help to reduce tightness in the muscles and joints and can improve your overall mobility and flexibility.
  • Release of Blocked Energy: Shiatsu massage encourages the release of blocked energy, or ki, allowing the body to restore itself to its natural balance.
  • Relaxation: Shiatsu massage helps to promote relaxation, improve sleep quality, and reduce mental and physical fatigue.

Who Should Avoid Shiatsu Massage?

Shiatsu massage can be a very beneficial form of massage therapy, but it is not recommended for everyone. For instance, Shiatsu massage should not be used on pregnant women or those with certain medical conditions, including epilepsy, recent surgery, high blood pressure, certain skin diseases, and cancer. It is important to discuss with your massage therapist any health issues or concerns that you may have prior to receiving a massage.


Shiatsu massage is an ancient technique that can have a wide variety of benefits. It can help to improve circulation and brain function, reduce tension and promote relaxation, and help release blocked energy. However, Shiatsu massage is not appropriate for everyone and should always be discussed with your massage therapist before receiving a massage.

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