ABOUT SPAA NZ
The Shiatsu Practitioners’ Association is a non-profit organisation and promotes all styles of Shiatsu without preference.
In New Zealand you will find several types of Shiatsu: Zen Shiatsu, Tao Shiatsu, Metta Shiatsu, Shiatsu Ryoho and Barefoot Shiatsu. All have their individual qualities while sharing the distinct Japanese traditional healing foundations that make Shiatsu bodywork unique.
The Shiatsu Practitioners’ Association supports and authorises the Shiatsu training schools in New Zealand and has a directory of fully qualified professional practitioners. Each practitioner registered with the Association has a minimum of 1600 hours practical and theoretical study over a 3 year period as per the Natural Health Practitioners NZ Inc. guidelines. The Shiatsu Practitioners’ Association is a chartered affiliate of the Natural Health Practitioners NZ Inc.
WHAT IS SHIATSU?
Shiatsu is a hands-on Japanese Zen Healing Art.
Shiatsu is more than a massage technique.
The character 指 “shi” means finger or toe. The character 圧 “atsu” translates as “slowly applied pressure maintained then slowly released” with the implication of the use of bodyweight rather than strength. Together the two characters symbolize a range of techniques used in a therapeutic way, delivered by bodyweight using either fingers, palms, elbows, knees or feet.
Shiatsu achieves unique results because of it’s holistic goals which attempt to treat the whole person rather than a specific medical complaint. Shiatsu is based on the time-honoured Oriental medical understanding that our physiological and psychological structures are supported and affected by meridians. Meridians are channels of living magnetic energy. A shiatsu practitioner can improve the Ki (chi, life-force, energy) flowing through the meridians to improve our general health and well being.
Shiatsu has a reputation for relieving pain or muscular tension, especially back and neck pain. Regular treatments can enhance overall physical vitality and emotional well being due to the deeply relaxing nature of the treatments which helps to reduce and prevent the build up of stress.
Shiatsu takes place on a traditional style futon and the recipient is fully clothed. Sessions can last anywhere from 30 to 90 minutes, each session catering to the individual’s needs at the time. Practitioners may recommend specific lifestyle or dietary changes. They may also suggest specific exercises to assist with restoring energetic balance. Shiatsu is suitable for all ages and is also safe during pregnancy.
WHAT DOES SHIATSU FEEL LIKE?
How can you imagine Shiatsu without having ever received it? Remember the feeling of a baby or cat crawling across your back...the pleasurable quality of the padding pressure and body weight. The baby or cat did not need to learn a particular massage technique or study the right way to crawl over your back. They just did it, naturally and easily. This is the essence of Shiatsu!