Shiatsu and Shiatsu Network Support Group

Shiatsu Network Support Group and Workshops

The Midlands Shiatsu Network Support Group meets at Elephant Rooms Draycott DE72 3PP 10am – 12.30pm approx.£3.00 each.  Please ask if you wish to attend.

Julie Tasker Tel: 07947 102 645
Email:    If you don’t hear from Julie within 24 hours please try ringing or texting her as sometimes the email contacts don’t arrive.  Julie is usually really good at first acknowledging emails & then when she has more time giving a fuller answer if needed.

Kindy and Carrie are both running some Shiatsu workshops in Nottingham.  Contact Kindy on or Carrie

Shiatsu Representatives UK (SRUK)

Julie was formerly the FHT Shiatsu Representative on the SRUK

What is Shiatsu?

Shiatsu is a touch based therapy that applies pressure to areas of the surface of the body through loose
comfortable clothing for the purpose of promoting and maintaining wellbeing.
A Shiatsu practitioner will initially consult with the client and plan the Shiatsu treatment. The client will then
be positioned comfortably, with appropriate adjustments being made throughout the session. Clear and
accurate aftercare advice will be given.
Shiatsu is a Japanese word that literally means finger pressure and derives its theoretical and practical roots
from the ancient traditions of Oriental medicine.
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.

Above ref: Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council (June 2013)

Shiatsu has been reported as helpful in relieving symptoms in many instances of conditions such as stress; tension; pain in back, neck and shoulders; and other chronic conditions

Edited extract from Paul Lundberg’s “The New Book of Shiatsu”:

What is Shiatsu?

Shiatsu can help promote relaxation, and support individuals towards greater … well-being.

Shiatsu is a Japanese word meaning “finger pressure”. It is a new name for [an ancient therapy]… the power of touch … It is a natural ability that people are now beginning to recognize again. This holistic hands-on … therapy is similar to a combination of massage and acupuncture, using hands rather than needles. Shiatsu uses hand pressure and manipulative techniques to adjust the body’s physical structure and its natural inner energies, to help maintain and promote [well-being].


Shiatsu is a Japanese word meaning “finger pressure”. It is a new name for [an ancient therapy]… with hands. Everybody has the … power of touch and responds to touch. It is a natural ability that people are now beginning to recognize again. Shiatsu uses hand pressure and manipulative techniques …and its natural inner energies, to help [promote well-being] …

Shiatsu is characterized by its great simplicity. It grew from earlier forms of massage, called Anma in Japan (Anmo or Tuina in China) which use rubbing, stroking, squeezing, tapping, pushing, and pulling to influence the muscles and circulatory systems of the body. Shiatsu, by contrast, uses few techniques and to an observer it would appear that little is happening – merely a still, relaxed pressure at various points on the body with the hand or thumb, an easy leaning of the elbows or a simple rotation of a limb. It almost seems a lazy activity and, to the extent that it conserves one’s energy, it is. But underneath the uncomplicated movements much is happening internally to the body’s energy on a subtle level. Subtle Energy in the Body

The Oriental tradition describes the world in terms of energy. All things are considered to be manifestations of a vital universal force, called ‘Ki’ by the Japanese, ”Chi”, or ‘Qi’, in China. Because of the Japanese origins of Shiatsu Therapy, the Japanese word Ki is used in preference to the Chinese word, Chi. Ki is the primary substance and motive force of life. It is most often described as “energy”, but Ki is also synonymous with breath in the Japanese and Chinese languages. In Oriental medicine, harmony of Ki within the human body is conceived as being essential to … [well-being]. All its endeavours are addressed to this end.

History of Shiatsu

The Development of Shiatsu in Japan

Shiatsu was developed in the early part of the 20th century by a Japanese practitioner, Tamai Tempaku, who incorporated the newer Western medical knowledge of anatomy and physiology into several older methods of treatment. Originally he called it “Shiatsu Ryoho”, or “finger pressure way of healing”, then “Shiatsu Ho “, “finger pressure method”. Now known simply as “Shiatsu”, it was officially recognized as a therapy by the Japanese Government in 1964, so distinguishing it from the older form of traditional massage, Anma. …

Chinese origins of Shiatsu

The earliest known book of Chinese medicine is called the ‘Huang Ti Nei Ching’, ‘The Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Internal Medicine’. In it the legendary Emperor questions his physician, Ch-I Po, about problems of medicine, and health among his people. In one well known passage Ch’i Po explains that different forms of medicine were developed in different regions according to the prevailing climate and the resulting constitutional problems from which people suffered. Treatment using herbs, needles and heat were attributed to Northern, Southern, Eastern, and Western re-gions, but development of physical therapy including massage and breathing exercise was accorded to the people of China’s central region. Thus began the long association of massage and manipulative therapy with special physical exercise, breathing techniques, and healing meditations which represented the highest level of Chinese medicine. These came to be known collectively as “Tao Yin”, methods for guiding the subtle energies within the body to flow smoothly. Shiatsu is the modern inheritor of this tradition. Chinese medicine was introduced to Japan by a Buddhist monk in the 6th century. The Japanese developed and refined many of its methods to suit their own physiology, temperament, and climate. In particular they developed the manual healing and diagnostic arts, evolving special techniques of abdominal diagnosis, …and ab-dominal massage.

Styles of Shiatsu

Many early Shiatsu practitioners developed their own style and some, including Tokojiro Namikoshi and Shizuto Masunaga, founded schools that helped establish Shiatsu as a therapy. There are many different styles of Shiatsu today. Some concentrate on “acupressure (acupuncture) points”. Some emphasise more general work on the body or along the pathways of energy to influence the Ki that flows in them. Others highlight diagnostic systems, such as the “Five Element” system or the macro-biotic approach. But all of these are based on traditional Chinese-medicine.

Zen Shiatsu

Masunaga incorporated his experience of Shiatsu into his studies of Western psychology and Chinese medicine; he also refined the existing methods of diagnosis. His extended system incorporated special exercises, known as “Makko Ho’, to stimulate the flow of Ki, and he developed a set of guiding principles to make the techniques more effective. His system was called “Zen Shiatsu” after the simple and direct approach to spirituality of the Zen Buddhist monks in Japan.

The Chinese Approach to Understanding the Body and Health

You may notice a circularity in the logic of Chinese medicine. Westerners think of cause and effect as a linear progression of ideas and events from A, through B, to C. Eastern philosophy regards events as mutually conditioned, arising together. They are not seen as distinct from the environment in which they occur. The background is as important as the fore-ground. An example is given here to help to clarify the difference.

… an obstruction of Ki, related to the overall energy patterns in the whole body of the particular individual, their circumstances, and lifestyle. Work may involve the arms or legs as well as (or instead of) the head and will bring more lasting and satisfactory changes than will an attempt to block … whatever.

Julie Tasker Tel: 07947 102 645 for a mobile session at your venue.
Email:    If you don’t hear from Julie within 24 hours please try ringing or texting her as sometimes the email contacts don’t arrive.  Julie is usually really good at first acknowledging emails & then when she has more time giving a fuller answer if needed.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>