Reactions & Shifts

A reaction, any reaction to a treatment is a good thing. Mostly, reactions are pleasant, you feel more relaxed, calm, more together, refreshed, re-energised, looser, to name a few "positive" feedbacks. These are all very lovely.

I always ask my clients for feedback after a treatment, I am trying to gauge the level of reaction in the body, whether something has shifted or changed. The worst kind of feedback to "how do you feel?" is alright, good, fine, that was nice. These don't indicate anything to me apart from a profound disconnection between the client and their emotional or physical self; they haven't actually registered how they are feeling. This is something to look in its own right, it is very common to be so "in your head" that you forget "how" to feel, particularly emotionally when we are used to "keeping a lid on it".

If there is no change in the way a client feels post-treatment, it means one of two things:

  1. There has been no change in their inner environment; mental, emotional or physical, which is highly unlikely, or
  2. There is a blockage within their system.

Both of these indicate stagnation, and in my experience normally emotional in origin.

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The Joy of Ampuku (an introduction)

Mmmm, sounds interesting … and a bit like a dodgy ‘70’s book.  Well, now that I have your attention ….

Ampuku is a very ancient form of abdominal massage.  So, why is it so good?  Firstly, it would be helpful to briefly explain the “lay of the land”.

Ampuku works on what is known in Japanese medicine as the Hara, and the word does not have a simple and straight-forward meaning.

Physically speaking, this is the area of the soft abdomen, an octagonal’ish shape starting from below the sternum, radiating out along and below the border of the rib cage toward the waist, then down to the hip (ileum) bones and toward the centre running above the pubic bone.

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So, What Is Shiatsu?

How do you describe Shiatsu to the ‘uninitiated’? This is a question that I feel many practitioners have, at some point struggled with – a conclusion drawn from observing peers and my own struggles. As students, we are encouraged to read through the literature and come up with a short, yet to-the-point, all-encompassing sentence, however, no one has managed to succinctly enunciate this elusive sentence to me. When asked what Shiatsu is, we can sound a little like Frank Zappa’esk ‘Valley Girls’ due to overuse of the word ‘like’.

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