FAQ - What is shiatsu 'good' for?
Most people can benefit from shiatsu in some way.
To some extent this is personal preference.
The best thing to do is to try it out, and see what you think.
A good way to try is to try one session initially; if you feel it is worth pursuing, then book for a series of treatments and then review.
Discuss with your practitioner what they would recommend.
In my experience, shiatsu is a deep affirming treatment. It can help resolve issues in surprising ways. It may work well with other therapies - eg osteopathy, herbs, western medicine.
Shiatsu works holistically, so is likely to support you on all levels - mind/ body/ spirit.
message from practitioner Catherine Scanlon:
I have been inspired by various wellbeing practices - shiatsu, do-in, chi kung, reflection/ meditation and use of Angel cards, and the Transformation Game - for many years.
I first came across shiatsu in the late 80s, pointed to it by a friend in Brazil. From there came a journey resulting in practitioner status in the mid 1990s. I remember enjoying co-ordinating the practitioner offering for the Ecovillage conference at the Findhorn Foundation in 1994/5. Also, working in the Holistic Health Centre, based at Meridian, was a wonderful opportunity, along with other colleagues - and contributing to the Community Health Programme.
Over the years, I have offered exercise/ keep fit classes - in Do-in ('Japanese' Yoga) and Chi Kung ('Chinese' Yoga) along with other exercises drawn from eg the hatha yoga tradition.
And more recently I trained to facilitate the Transformation Game, from which the Findhorn Foundation derived the powerful Angel cards to use as springboards for meditation, along with the Intuitive Solutions cards, which all seem to me incredibly powerful, and so often so strikingly apposite.
I am now going to take a year's sabbatical - starting 1st August 2021 (until 31st July 2022). In this time, I will reflect and explore on various aspects, and be alert for what should come 'next'. If you have any views about helpful and interesting projects, do get in touch with me at [email protected]
All good wishes,
'Shiatsu removes the 'bumps''
'How could something so gentle be so powerful'
'I've never felt so relaxed in my life'
'One hour of escapism; indulge and invest in yourself' Chrissy Dingsdale
'I love the way Catherine listens to our needs and gently pushes us to try difficult things' Jo Tait.
'I enjoy an hour of time to stretch and relax and be myself' Rachel Clark
'Very beneficial to mental state. Helps relax and destress.' Caroline Wells
'It really is a wonderful way to relax and invigorate - even when you don't feel up to it' Sue
'I feel I am more in tune with my body and soul' Irene Dawson
Airbnb intro to wellbeing and shiatsu - paused
click on the date that works for you - an introduction to wellbeing work with Catherine Scanlon at Breathing Space - what can shiatsu, taiqi qigong, and meditation techniques do for you and your family/ friends?
Authentic Wellbeing - Mindfulness
Would you like...
... to feel deeply well?
... to feel you're bringing all aspects of your self - mind, body and spirit - authentically together?
... to have someone else to support you on your health and well-being journey?
If the answer to any of these questions is 'yes', then you may find working with meditation, mindful bodywork and exercises, along with a reflective tool - the Transformation Game - with Catherine Scanlon something you would like to explore further.
Mindfulness is a present buzzword for being positively present in life and activity; and the strategies offered here are all mindful, bringing you into a better focus, and present in the moment for this reality in the most positive way.
Based in Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire; easily accessible from Aspley Guise, Woburn Sands, Aylesbury, Buckingham, Leighton Buzzard, Olney, Bedford, Northampton; also, Oxford, Cambridge, London; other locations eg Bristol, Brighton, Dorchester possible by arrangement.
Please contact Catherine Scanlon direct by email or by mobile/text 07905-504418 explaining what you're looking for, and good days/ dates and times for sessions.
An introduction to Breathing Space: Tools for Wellbeing from practitioner, Catherine Scanlon:
What people say...
about Shiatsu... 'how could something so gentle be so powerful?'; 'I felt put back together 'the right way'; 'I feel like I've been on a week's holiday'; 'when I win the lottery I will have shiatsu every day!'; 'it's like a magic pill'; 'the day following shiatsu, my sciatic pain resolved itself'; 'what a workout!'; 'I felt better able to make decisions'; 'following shiatsu, I was able to respond to my friend gently rather than irritably, and yet still fully expressing myself'; 'I felt better able to manage situations gracefully, rather than aggressively'; 'if everyone in the world had shiatsu every week, then we would have world peace.'; 'Shiatsu makes you smile!'; 'I've never felt so relaxed in my life!'.
about Japanese Yoga (Do-in) and Chinese Yoga (Taiqi qigong) exercises... 'chilled'; 'apparently gentle exercises, left me feeling more balanced and comfortable in my body'; 'some of the standing tai chi qikong exercises are really challenging'; 'the variety of movement feels really health enhancing'; 'wow, my knees feel better!'; 'after the session, walking back I noticed I felt more benign and peaceful; my pelvis felt 'softer' (in a good way); potentially more able to cope with life'.
about mindfulness in the form of Meditation and the Transformation Game... 'the Transformation Game gets me thinking about issues 'outside the box'; 'it's such a special game to support and promote reflection and inspiration'; 'profound - somehow the words on the cards hit the spot, whether I know it at the time or not!'; 'the ideas on the cards can take us places that we weren't expecting, and with unexpected but important wisdom along the way'; 'space for inspiration and allowing next steps to emerge'.
What are wellbeing and meditation techniques good for?
Most people in many situations can benefit from any of these techniques.
For example, mindfulness in the form of Shiatsu and Do-in/ Tai Chi exercises can be helpful in overall wellness promotion, as well as de-stress, feeling more balanced; people with MS, Parkinsons, stroke have consulted and found these helpful.
Spiritual practice, along with reflective techniques are a good baseline to help gain daily balance, and longer term equilibrium and planning.
The practice has a particular interest in supporting people be well, using shiatsu, Japanese Yoga, and meditation to reduce stress and improve wellbeing.
Reasons to use one of these tools
your life will improve.
you will feel more yourself.
Shiatsu is great to 'remove the bumps' as one client said recently.
Regular Do-in and Tai Chi Qikung practise will help you enhance your general flexibility and alertness.
Reflection and meditation tools will allow you to focus on particular issues, whether daily, weekly or other intervals to help think things through, and bring a holistic reflective dimension to your life.
Thought for the month...
If you have an 'iOS' device (iphone or ipad, I think) why not upload the Angel meditation App?
Angel card App.
These qualities can provide a good springboard for meditation/reflection focus - whether for a particular issue, or eg as a daily awareness. This practice can enhance mindfulness in life.
Shiatsu and Bereavement
There are so many situations that shiatsu can help support on many levels. In bereavement, shiatsu can help process understandable grief. In fact, someone I talked with who was a carer for a family member, said they felt through regular shiatsu, they had somehow pre-processed grief when their relative eventually died. The Metal Element has the emotional aspect of grief and sadness, and so among other things shiatsu may bring us into balance in this respect. Bereavement can be a time of turmoil in other relationships as well, and shiatsu can help with keeping steady, and managing situations as gracefully as possible.
regular shiatsu sessions
Regular shiatsu can help you work, rest and play. Really. Shiatsu works in so many different ways and at different levels. If we function better, then we will be better able to work. It can help better focus, and from a steady place we will make better decisions. Shiatsu is generally relaxing, but also can support you to rest well - it is considered evidenced for improving sleep, for example. And if you're functioning better in all ways, then you're likely to be able to play better - whether it's the odd game of tennis, or spending time with friends.
COPD thought from Catherine.
COPD is a major health issue today. As I prepare for a tutorial for the Open University (Science and Health course) on this subject, it also strikes me how the work of Shiatsu, and related Bodywork such as do-in, could help someone with COPD. It could ease the body, and soften tissues, potentially allowing easier breath. If you'd like to try this, for an introductory reduction of 50% of fee, then contact me to book an appointment. (Please cite ref code COPD202050% to receive this reduction).
and on another aspect - Forgiveness
Someone I know mentioned that they were reluctant to forgive others for real or imagined hurts.
As a shiatsu practitioner, I would consider eg the energy lines linked to 'letting go' - such as the Large Intestine meridian - part of hte Metal Element. I might consider other energy lines, eg Spleen meridian - part of the Earth Element; and Water Element to give courage and confidence on a life path.
As a do-in practitioner, I would consider these exercises to support generally, and exercises linked to the above-mentioned meridians and elements.
and as a reflection and transformation game facilitator we might consider using these to accompany the journey. The Transformation Game can give another holistic view on how things may arise - such as not wanting to forgive, and how this may be processed and facilitated.
boosting the immune system
whilst we need to try to protect ourselves eg with masks, hygiene practices and social/physical distancing, we should also be aiming to nourish ourselves to allow our immune system in best possible nick.
Tools for wellness, such as bodywork - whether shiatsu or do-in/ taiqi-ish - and reflection - can be part of a raft of measures to improve the immune system.
Good diet, and herbs to nourish the immune system are also worth incorporating into your life practice.
touch and hugs
So much talk recently (during the Covid19 pandemic) of people who have missed both touching others, and hugs from friends and family.
Shiatsu bodywork is a special therapy which nourishes this aspect. In Chinese medicine terms, the Spleen - part of the Earth Element - is nourished by touch.
Shiatsu bodywork can support and nourish some aspects of contact, and allowing the body to feel present.
shiatsu and shock
always good to be aware that shiatsu can help process shock - eg after a fall, could be worth considering a shiatsu.
In Chinese/ Japanese/ oriental terms, the heart protector meridan (part of the Fire element) may be good for shock.
too much zooming?
Shiatsu is great to rebalance when you have been doing a lot of zoom calls. You don't look at the screen while receiving shiatsu, so there's already a break. But perhaps more importantly your body and mind have a chance to chill out, and re-balance. Why not give it a go and see what you think?
FAQ - Is it like Reiki?
Shiatsu was developed in Japan. So was Reiki.
Reiki tends to be more light or off the body than Shiatsu.
Shiatsu tends to involve a more substantial training.
Some holding/ hands-on healing techniques seem similar in both.
Shiatsu involves use of energy lines (meridians) and pressure points, along with stretches. Reiki uses a different system; no stretches. (I haven't studied it myself, so don't know in detail, although I have received it from a range of practitioners). I think it is somehow image-based.
Intuitive Solutions App
This App is available to help you think through particular issues. Recommended. For phone and tablet/ipad.
top photo credit - the wonderful Noélia Albuquerque