Shiatsu Therapy

Shiatsu is a manual therapy that originated in Japan. It has been married with the wisdom and knowledge of Traditional Chinese Medicine that stems from 5000 year old traditions and experience in healing.


This therapy literally translates as “finger pressure”. It shares some similarities to acupressure. Many people are familiar with acupuncture. A similar theory used during acupuncture treatments is followed during shiatsu treatments but by applying the hands to the body not needles.


Traditionally shiatsu uses specific pressure from palms, fingers, and thumbs on points on the body to help relieve pain, open chi flow, release tension and spasm in muscles, increase blood flow, and increase fluid into the joints. Long holding is unique to shiatsu. More recently, graduates of extended programs (2200 hours) ( CST’s) have also been taught western medicine such as anatomy, physiology and pathology. These two areas, the very ancient and the very modern, join together to bring us the best of both worlds.


The para -sympathetic nervous system is stimulated which allows deep transformative rest and repair. The sympathetic nervous system rests as we relax and lose that rushed tendency to be in fight or flight and anxiety. Our breathing often deepens which is automatically calming to our systems and our tissues oxygenate better which usually reduces pain and or discomfort. Each muscle or tendon can be individually focused on to bring harmony to it.


The client rests on a massage table or on a mat on the floor. There are no oils or lotions used as you relax with your own comfortable clothing on. The Shiatsu therapist finds the reason for your symptoms and works on that. You are more comfortable and happy when you leave than when you came in. Treatments are typically one hour, but other durations can be helpful. People of any age can receive Shiatsu, from new born to the elderly. The treatment is tailored and adjusted to suit all body types or conditions. Women who have received treatments during pregnancy often experience a smoother labor.


Some people may choose to receive a shiatsu treatment for relaxation and others for the therapeutic effects.


Many conditions have been treated effectively by shiatsu. These include but are not limited to:


Headaches / Migraines Constipation

Back Pain Digestive Problems

Neck & Shoulder Pain Menstrual Problems

Sciatica Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Whiplash Fibromyalgia

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Arthritis

Repetitive Strain Injuries Asthma

Muscle Tension & Spasm Anxiety & Depression

Insomnia Sports Injuries


The number of treatments required varies with the condition and the person.  Acute injuries often require fewer treatments and a chronic or long standing problem may take several appointments to resolve.  Feel free to call for more information.


For more information on CST’s and Shiatsu Therapy, please visit the Shiatsu Therapy Association of Ontario (STAO) website.