Meet our Practitioner - Richard Blair, Shiatsu
As well as introducing you to members of our shop staff, I'm going to be putting the spotlight on a featured Napiers Clinic practitioner every month.
This month, it's the turn of Richard Blair M.R.S.S. (T)
I came across Shiatsu by chance, while looking for something to do with my evenings. After stumbling across the community education classes in Shiatsu, I was quickly hooked and did a couple of terms. I then furthered my study with the Glasgow School of Shiatsu with Elaine Liechti.
After learning with more amazing teachers from Japan, the USA and the UK, I was accepted onto the Shiatsu Society register as a practitioner in ‘90 and a teacher in ‘92. More recently the voluntary system of registration of therapies has led to the inclusion of Shiatsu in the Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council (CNHC) of which I am also a member.
When learning Shiatsu, initially, my hands lead the way. The practical techniques made sense to me, but it took a little while for the head to catch up with the hands. Feeling the flow, blocks, deficiencies and allowing the touch to help free up these issues.
Shiatsu is a traditional hands-on Japanese energetic healing art. It can help in a wide range of conditions - from specific injuries to more general symptoms of poor health.
Shiatsu is a deeply relaxing experience and regular Shiatsu sessions help to prevent the build up of stress in our daily lives. The philosophy underlying Shiatsu is that vital energy (known as Ki in Japanese) flows throughout the body in a series of channels called meridians.
For many different reasons Ki can stop flowing freely and this then produces a symptom. Shiatsu practitioners use a variety of techniques to improve the client’s energy flow. These may include gentle holding, pressing with palms, thumbs, fingers, elbows, knees and feet on the meridians and, when appropriate, more dynamic rotations and stretches. As the quality of Ki changes, the symptoms associated with a lack of flow will gradually improve. Shiatsu is a therapy that works on the individual as a complete being - not just the physical body, but also on an emotional and/or mental level.
Today it is an autonomous treatment method influenced by Chinese, Japanese and Western knowledge. In addition to being regularly used by thousands of people all over the world, a variety of charities, health foundations, NHS trusts and hospitals in the United Kingdom provide Shiatsu to support patients whilst receiving treatment for a range of health issues and to help them maintain their general wellbeing.
Treatment usually takes place on a padded mat or futon at floor level, although it is possible to receive Shiatsu sitting on a chair if you are unable to lie down.
The client stays fully clothed. Following a treatment, there can be a feeling of increased vitality combined with relaxation.
To help the treatment, the recipient should wear loose comfortable clothing that can allow a free range of movement.