I know Shiatsu is great,. I found it over 15 years ago and I wouldn't be without it; I've just got to explain to you why it's good for you, what it's good for, and an idea of how it works!
We're still in semi lockdown/with social distancing and I know a lot of people won't step out the house until they're sure it's safe, and some may not do so until there is a vaccine. If you're a person that is missing your therapies and wondering how to bridge the gap then a supervised self shiatsu maybe the way to go.
First though let's talk about Shiatsu itself, and how it works. You may not have heard of it but I bet you've heard of Acupuncture? They're both based on the same theory system, one uses needles, the other uses gentle finger pressure.
Acupuncture and Shiatsu diverge from here in that the former is great for acute conditions and Shiatsu is gentle and supportive so great for chronic ailments and pain, repeating and longer term issues. If you need to take regular pain killers or anit-inflammatories, this is where Shiatsu can step in to help you relieve pain and symptoms.
Mainstream pain medications can often have unpleasant side effects. A lot of people are increasingly seeking options to help manage their conditions naturally, and this is a wise move. Traditional Chinese medicine, meditation, herbal remedies, reiki and, of course, massage., as well as exercise styles such as Tai Chi , Qi Gong and Yoga are all massively beneficial to alleviate any chronic issues you maybe dealing with.
WHY CAN SHIATSU (AND ACUPUNCTURE) RELIEVE PAIN?
Understanding a little bit about pain helps, and there are all sorts of pain from sore to throbbing, dull to stabbing! The first thing you need to do is really feel and understand what it is that is wrong for you before you reach for the pain killer or grit your teeth and get on with it - neither are ideal.
Knowing the type of pain you have can tell you a lot about what is wrong with you, if you wake up one morning and try to move your neck and it screeches, you know you've got a 'crick in your neck', you may wriggle it, massage it and it's most likely gone the next day.
You accessed what kind of pain it was, gave it some massage, and knew it would be gone. the same if you get a cramp, the awful searing, scorching twisting pain, that then leaves an achy muscle afterwards, you knew what it was and assessed you could carry on.
But what if you don't know the type of pain, or the cause of the pain, how do you know taking a pain killer relieves it properly? Pain killers and anti-inflammatories will relieve 'heat' based pain, this is caused by something being bashed or trapped or worse, you see/feel inflammation and the pain killer relieves it. But do you have any pains where the meds don't work? These maybe 'cold condition' pains, brought on by the weather, left over from an old injury or unbeknownst to you, a point of weakness; these are all chronic issues.
Whether a pain comes and goes or lingers there is an issue, and to have your body running with optimal health for life, please don't over look these pains. The years of 'stiff upper lip' have gone, there are therapists in every town, someone can sort out your pain and ease it.
PAIN IS A BLOCKAGE OR A LACK OF SOMETHING
I bet you've never heard a pain described like this before?!
A blockage - swelling/ inflammation, or tightening of muscles. These different scenarios are quite often surface like - knees, necks and shoulders. Sometimes they go of their own accord and sometimes they really need help. Your body may need a lot of time to heal, for example a rotator cuff (shoulder joint) tear, will have to take time, but your mobility may suffer during this time. Shiatsu would gently work all the soft tissue/ surrounding muscles and support your Qi, the energy that runs through the damage, aiding strength back in.
A deeper blockage you may not see, or understand, only feel You may feel 'something is not right' but you can't put your finger on it. This is where Shiatsu really comes into it's own, You may have on/off nausea, random belly pains, IBS, constipation, you may also be a migraine sufferer. Wouldn't it be fantastic if going to someone who could unblock these internal issues could make you feel better?
It's not understanding the nuts and bolts of what is going on inside of you, it's about knowing that you could feel a lot better, and be open minded as how to achieve that. Using the theory of Chinese medicine on listening to you, about how your symptoms manifest we make a full assessment of what your body is doing on the inside. If you've been to the GP, or had hospital tests and the results come back negative, but you still don't feel right, the likelihood is that your ailment is in the energetic realm; and this is good!
It's good because it means that you can catch and resolve an issue before it takes hold too deeply physically, you really don't want to get into this situation, you want to really listen to your body, note the type of pain or issue you have and then seek out a natural resolution to bring you back into balance and harmony; this is where Shiatsu ticks all your boxes.
DID YOU KNOW FEELING UNWELL CAN BE EMOTIONAL?
When you have ailments that linger, pain that comes and goes, feelings of nausea or unwellness, it can all be attributed to how you're handling situations emotionally. We're so good at putting on a brave face and holding things in, but in holding them somewhere they can then start to make that area of your body unwell. Shiatsu is working on your emotional state as much as you physical one, so it's going to help you deal with stress so much better, the things that drive you mad one day just won't seem so irritating the next - isn't that great? These blockages I'm talking about can cause you to have low moods, mood swings and irritability, in helping your body remove the blockages and start to flow better again, so will your moods, you'll just feel better, and you may not be able to put your finger on it, just like you couldn't pin point feeling unwell, but that doesn't really matter, just so long as you feel better.
NOW FOR THE MISSING BITS
We've talked about blockages and the effects that arise from that but what is this about things missing? You can see all your limbs right? So what could be missing??
This where western medicine can fall down, as there is a pill for something that isn't there. Well, there is in one respect, they're called Vitamin and Mineral Supplements and I put a lot of my clients on them when they come initially to start their path to wellness on the best footing possible,
Do you feel the cold,, do you have a weak knee or a clicky wrist, do you have a joint that 'just goes', or when you suffer a migraine is your neck freezing cold? These are all examples of something missing in localised areas, and Shiatsu can bring back the warmth and the strength. Can you imagine having no more migraines? With Shiatsu, this is a real possibility.
When your energy 'Qi' isn't flowing, it also has a knock on effect to your flow of blood, muscles can get cold and flat and you can get into a catch 22 situation of your symptom turning into a chronic issue and just not getting resolved. Ever rub a body part to get it warm, this is exactly what you're doing, re-energising that part, getting the blood flowing, getting it working properly again. If you can do this yourself, this is fantastic, if you need help you need shiatsu. And what if you could be shown how to do this for deeper more chronic ailments, this is where the supervised self shiatsu comes in, and is proving really effective, even for a lady with MS.
SHIATSU CAN GET TO BODY PARTS THAT YOU DIDN'T THINK POSSIBLE
Most of the major therapies you can think of will get deep into your body on some level - osteopathy, cranial sacral, aromatherapy, reflexology, and you will find the one that is right for you. The benefits of Shiatsu are that it is fully clothed, full body, pleasantly physical, and you can start noticing the changes within the session, just how quickly your body was desperate for that understanding touch that allowed blockages to dissolve and weakness to warm and strengthen.
Shiatsu is working on many levels, the muscles and blood, the endocrine, the lymphatic, your nervous system, gastro-intestinal, and urinary.... I'm sure there are more, oh yes, of course hormonal, how can I forget that as I see at lot of menopausal women and help them alleviate their symptoms naturally via shiatsu, supplements and coaching.
Feel tired? If you body isn't flowing and working well, it'll feel fatigued, this may come out in the lack of quality of sleep, feeling exhausted on getting up, or a constant dull ache in your back and limbs.
What I don't want you to ever think is that you're not ill enough or in enough pain to go and get a therapy. You can be feeling pretty good, or just OK and those are both still valid reasons for going for you therapy, either to make you feel better, or to keep you feeling great. Self care is about preventing illnesses and ailments, I can't believe I've written this much before mentioning strengthening your immunity, which was always important but possibly not much thought about, but now, in times of covid viruses is imperative that you know you have the core strength to fight off a virus before it takes hold. If you're down with pain or low moods, you've an open door to invite all sorts of infections in, don't let it be so. Book a therapy with anyone, or book a Shiatsu with me or your local practitioner. Online or face to face we're here to help you emotionally and physically to be the very best of yourself!
Book in for a chat with Andrea on how Shiatsu can help you - message her on 07899 987227 to get started on feeling great!