Shiatsu is a deeply relaxing form of hands-on therapy helping to promote physical and emotional wellbeing. It is believed to have been first practised in Japan and is based on the principle that vital energy (referred to as chi or ki) flows throughout the body in channels (known as meridians). Shiatsu aims to support the body in finding its own balance.
Shiatsu can help a wide variety of complaints:
Back, neck and shoulder pain
Headaches and migraine
Menopausal and perimenopausal symptoms
Stress and tension
Low energy and fatigue
Regular Shiatsu can also be beneficial in developing and maintaining a greater connection with your physical and emotional health, supporting and promoting your overall wellbeing.
Each massage is tailored to meet your specific needs, using a variety of techniques. The word Shiatsu translates literally as 'finger pressure', but in practice palms and thumbs are used to work the meridians and are applied along with holding and stretching techniques. Jill's way of working with Shiatsu is very gentle and can safely be received by those who are frail as well as the more physically robust.
What is a Shiatsu therapy session like?
A Shiatsu session normally lasts around 1 hour. This includes time at the beginning and end of the massage to follow-up on any earlier sessions, find out how you are feeling and to get feedback from you.
You will normally be lying on a futon (Japanese mattress) on the floor, although Shiatsu treatment can be given with you sitting on a chair if lying down would be difficult for you. Pillows and cushions can be used to support you to ensure that you remain comfortable throughout the session.
The techniques used - a combination of palm and thumb pressure together with gentle holding and stretching - should never be painful. If the depth of pressure applied or stretches used are too strong for you, your body will simply respond by becoming tense, so it is important for you to give feedback during the massage if anything feels uncomfortable.
No oils are used in Shiatsu massage, and you remain fully clothed throughout the session. As you remain fully clothed throughout the session, it’s best if you wear loose and comfortable clothing (e.g cotton tracksuit or jogging bottoms, long sleeved top and socks) It is best not to eat heavily for a couple of hours before a session (a light snack is fine) and avoid alcohol and non-prescription drugs.
After your Shiatsu session
Most people find that they feel very relaxed at the end of a Shiatsu session. You may feel energised or alternatively, you may feel the need to rest. Generally, it is best to take things easy initially, and to ensure that you drink plenty of water.
Sometimes the effects of a session may continue over a few days and may be physical or emotional in nature. It's useful to be aware of any response and and tell your practitioner at the start of your next session.
Based on what has arisen during your session, you may be given suggestions about steps you can take to support your health and wellbeing.
Jill's interest in Shiatsu developed through her own experience of using complementary therapies to deal with a variety of health issues.
She graduated from The Shiatsu School Edinburgh in 2007 following completion of the 3 year Diploma course where teaching focussed on Zen Shiatsu.
Jill then completed her post-graduate year and joined the Register of Professional Practitioners of the Shiatsu Society (MRSS) in 2009.
Since graduating she has continued to study with some of the leading teachers in the Shiatsu field and has a particular interest in working with women's health.
Jill's Shiatsu is strongly influenced by the work of Akinobu Kishi who developed Seiki, a very intuitive and spontaneous approach which assumes the body's own capacity for health and healing.
A holistic approach to mind-body-spirit is the essence of Jill's Shiatsu and she is committed to helping to support clients who recognise the intrinsic link between these aspects of their wellbeing.
As a member of of The Shiatsu Society (UK), Jill adheres to their strict codes of practice and ethics.
In addition to developing her private practice, Jill is a regular volunteer therapist at Healthy Valleys, a community health project serving rural south Lanarkshire.
Biodynamic Cranio-Sacral Therapy (BCST)
Jill is also a qualified Biodynamic Cranio-Sacral Therapist - please click here to learn more about this.
A one hour session - £45