WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF SHIATSU MASSAGE?
Most similar to Thai Massage, Shiatsu is another Eastern modality of bodywork that incorporates compressions and assisted stretches. As with Deep Tissue, and Thai Massage, Shiatsu Massage will improve circulation, reduce or eliminate tight spots and adhesions, and facilitate muscle repair. This is a Japanese style of massage that is based on ancient Chinese Medicine techniques.
In addition to the muscular benefits for the body, Shiatsu focuses on balancing the energy or “ki” in the body. Your therapist will work towards balancing the yin and yang energies, easing disharmonies between internal organs, and freeing blockages of ki through your meridians.
Those who have never tried this style of massage should definitely book a session! Many find this style of massage to be the best combination of relaxation and deep bodywork. You absolutely do not have to be familiar with any of the concepts of meridians and Chinese medicine to reap the benefits of Shiatsu massage.
WHAT TO EXPECT DURING YOUR SESSION:
This style of massage is typically performed on a cushioned floor mat, though your therapist can easily incorporate a lot of this work into a session on a table. It is a dry massage- meaning it does not require oil. It is also a fully clothed modality. Please show up to your session in comfortable long pants and a t-shirt. Your clothing should be flexible and allow movement- fitness or yoga attire is ideal.
During your Shiatsu Massage, your therapist will deliver compressions using thumbs, knuckles, elbows, forearms, and even feet. These compressions are delivered in a rhythmical, evenly timed manner allowing your body to easily predict your therapist’s next stroke- thus facilitating a deep relaxation while simultaneously delivering deep pressure. Shiatsu massage also incorporates rocking, shaking , and tapotement techniques that can be very soothing and therapeutic.
Those who have never experienced “stepping” will be amazed at the precision that an experienced therapist can deliver with their foot. Your therapist will expertly distribute their weight, ensuring that they are administering the perfect pressure for your tight muscles. On smaller parts of your body, they will ensure to have one foot on the ground- not putting their full weight onto you. Larger parts of the body, such as the glutes and hamstrings, can easily withstand (and will greatly benefit from) the full pressure of your therapist’s weight.
This beautiful and very effective style of massage is highly reccommended for everybody. Those who prefer to be on a table or enjoy oils during their massage would be better suited with a Swedish massage or Deep Tissue.
HOW MANY SESSIONS ARE NEEDED?
This will always depend on your specific goals and the nature of your muscle dysfunction.
For those who are seeking massage as a preventative method to shore up minor imbalances in the body, achieve relaxation, and improve circulation- once a month will be perfect for you.
If you are trying to ease muscle tension from an old injury or from repetitive muscle usage, you should expect that it will take more than one session to achieve these results. The longer you have been living with a muscle dysfunction, the longer it will take to work through the many layers of fibrous tissue. For somebody coming in with a dysfunction that has been bothering them for a long time, an average scenario might look something like the following:
1. Initial visit to assess and ease outer muscle layers
2. Follow up appointment in one week to ease the middle layers of tissue
3. Second follow up appointment in one week to ease the deepest layers of tissue
4. Monthly maintenance visits to preserve muscle integrity and prevent return of dysfunction
For athletes, there are many studies showing the benefits that can be received from regular massages. Some of these benefits include, reduced muscle tension, increased range of motion, decreased muscle stiffness and soreness after exercise, enhanced athletic performance, and prevention of injuries when massage is received regularly. For more information and references, please visit the AMTA website. We recommend 1-6 sessions per month depending on the frequency and intensity of your athletic training.
HOW MUCH DOES A SESSION COST?
You can find our session and membership rates here.