Bring in the new year - Yoga & health magazine's Introduction to shiatsu contains very important pointers that will help you learn the art of Shiatsu effectively; it also presents some important 'do's and don'ts' to consider when giving a Shiatsu treatment.
Therefore it is strongly recommended that you read it carefully before proceeding to Part One.
- Yin and Yang
- THE ABDOMEN TREATMENT
- Leg Pressure Points
- Preparing for a Shiatsu Session
- The Five Elements
- Shoulder pressure points
- THE STEP-BY-STEP SEQUENCE
- The origins of Shiatsu
- How to find the points
- POINTS TO REMEMBER
- How much pressure to use
- Choosing a school or practitioner
- Shoulders Treatment
- Vital organs
- Energy channels
- TREATING THE INDIVIDUAL
- DEVELOPING YOUR TECHNIQUE
- Energy in the hands
- Hara and breathing
- SELF-DEVELOPMENT EXERCISES
- Back of body treatment
- Front of leg pressure points
- Toe Treatment
- Kyo and Jitsu
- Increasing your sensitivity
- Governing Vessel
- Forehead Massage
For the purpose of treatment in this lesson, the abdomen means the soft, malleable area below the ribs and above the pelvis and pubic bone. This area contains unprotected and partially protected vital organs - the liver, gall bladder, stomach, spleen and pancreas, all partly under the ribs; then, below that, the large intestine or colon, surrounding the small intestine, with the kidneys behind; and lower still, the bladder and reproductive organs. Treatment must take into account the vulnerability of these organs, and pressure should be modified accordingly if there is a known problem with any of them, or if any treatment causes sharp or sudden pain.
The abdomen is sensitive or tense in some people; watch your partner's face from time to time as you work on it, or check by asking them, and temper the pressure if you observe discomfort. Pent-up emotions are often held in the abdomen, rather than being outwardly expressed, causing sensitivity here. The following treatment can help release them.
The abdomen, called the 'hara' in Japanese, contains an important internal energy centre, the Tan Den, in the middle of its lower half. This is considered in the Orient to be the major centre of the body's underlying energy and strength. Its condition profoundly affects general health, vitality and longevity. If the hara is healthy, you will find a sense of strong energy here; it should seem bouncy and resilient to the touch; not hard, excessively swollen or, on the other hand, completely soft and lifeless.
The upper half of the abdominal cavity should feel reasonably soft and open. Hardness and impenetrability here is a reflection of the underlying condition of the organs beneath, indicating stagnation or imbalances in Ki flow. This part of the abdomen also houses the solar plexus centre, which governs issues of confidence and exercise of will power. Tension in this area, particularly in the diaphragm, also reflects pent-up emotion, often related to these issues. Shiatsu helps with release of these tensions, and over a period can profoundly support this aspect of personal development.
Lose Inches Around Your Abdomen
Liposuction (fat suction) was popularised in the early eighties and completely revolutionised body contour surgery. It was initially designed to resculpture parts of the body, which had unsightly stubborn areas of fat, which did not respond to diet or exercise.
Liposuction can benefit many patients where previous techniques of body contouring were inadequate in achieving the desired result. It can also be combined with other standard procedures thereby producing better and longer lasting results such as in face lifting or abdominoplasty. We have many specialists that have years of experience in carrying out liposuction procedures, to find out more about getting this procedure carried out in Brighton don't hesitate to contact us.
Patients are usually advised to rest for the first twenty-four to forty eight hours. There is usually a degree of stiffness and discomfort. After this time patients are encouraged to become more active.
Most surgeons usually recommend an elastic garment and this should be worn constantly for several weeks. The purpose of the garment is to help mould the reshaped tissue. There is a wide variety of liposuction garments now available for all areas of the body.
Sutures are usually removed after a week. Showering and bathing is permitted as soon as the next day.
Gentle massage of the treated areas should begin at about ten days after the operation and some surgeons advocate ultrasound or other physiotherapy to disperse the bruising and swelling (which can be quite pronounced) more quickly. Moderate exercise can be resumed at about two weeks.
About this sequence
This sequence begins with 'tuning in' to the hara, before the preparatory massage work to loosen up the area, and finishes with specific point work. Massage and pressure-point work on the abdomen directly affect the functioning of both the small and large intestines. The abdomen mirrors the condition of the whole person, and comprehensive treatment here will help restore Ki imbalances. Working on the abdomen can be most profound.
POINTS TO REMEMBER
•use your body weight, not muscular effort
• keep your own body relaxed
• focus attention and breathe in your abdomen
• keep your working arm straight but not locked
• lean into each movement on the out-breath, and hold the position
• work at right angles to the body surface
• cultivate a calm feeling and regular rhythm
1. Kneel alongside your partner, close enough to be able to lay one hand on the abdomen and still keep your own back straight without feeling overbalanced. Keep your hand here for a few moments, making a connection with your partner's Ki and cultivating a calm and peaceful feeling, before starting the treatment.
If your partner's abdomen has been troublesome, for instance with severe constipation or diarrhoea, they may find it helpful to draw the knees up and place the feet flat on the floor instead of having the legs straight.
2. Begin to massage across the abdominal area with both hands. Start with your hands at the side nearest to you, positioned close to the ribs, and push gently down and across with the heels of your hands; then pull your hands back towards you, pressing down and in with the fingers. Continue these movements in a slow but smoothly connected action, not unlike the kneading of bread dough. Gradually press more firmly and deeply, covering the whole area between the ribs and the pubic bone.
3. Starting with the lower area of your partner's abdomen on the side nearest you, apply palm pressure downwards, and continue in a circular direction, clockwise around the navel. Keep the passive hand resting on the hip at first, while you move around with the other hand, making particularly sure that you exert pressure on the out-breath. When you are about halfway round, you will find it more comfortable and effective to rest the working hand and continue with what was the passive hand to complete the circle. Start with light pressure, and then repeat twice more, leaning in with increasing pressure each time; you can generally work quite strongly in this area, but do check your partner's reaction.
CAUTION: Do not work here during advanced pregnancy. Work more lightly during menstruation, or in cases of abdominal or reproductive Organ problems.
4. Now proceed with more localized point work over the same area; again starting near the hip on your side and working in a clockwise direction, applying pressure on the out-breath. However, instead of using thumb pressure, you can use the tips of the fingers. Hold the fingers straight and close together and press inwards, perpendicular to the skin's surface. The hands will alternate roles, between passive and working, as in the previous step. Repeat twice more.
Finish by placing your hands one on top of the other, and go over the same area again, sliding your hands in a clockwise direction, to complete work on the abdomen.
Abdominal pressure points
The approximate line to work around forms a circle about 5 centimetres (2 inches) out from the navel, depending on your partner's size. If you find points that seem hard, or feel tender to your partner, press more lightly but repeatedly. If there is sharp pain, leave that spot immediately.
Benefits: useful for all the abdominal organs; helpful for constipation, cramps, poor digestion, pre-menstrual tension and other menstrual problems, urination difficulties, lack of sexual energy and overall vitality.
5. Now turn the palm over and grip the edges of the hand between your fingers and the base of your thumbs. Pressing down and moving outwards across the top of the hand with your thumbs, flex the hand downwards three times on the out-breaths.
6. Turn the hand palm upwards again, and apply thumb pressure over the whole of the palm. Cover the perimeter of the palm, the base of the thumb and the centre of the palm, applying pressure on the out-breaths, as usual. You can work strongly into these points.
Palm pressure points
Approximate lines of treatment run down between the bones in the hand. Pay special attention to areas that seem hard or tight, working repeatedly over them.
Benefits: helpful for stiffness or arthritis in the hands; also benefits the heart, circulation and energy levels, plus the lungs and breathing.
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