What is Shiatsu?? How does it work?


Massage is a normal term for rubbing, pressing the skin, tendons, ligaments and muscles. Massage can vary from light (superficial) to deep. There are two types of massages with and without oil. Massage has a number of benefits including relaxing fatigue, tiredness, refreshing skin and various others. There are different types of massages namely swedish massage, trigger point massage, deep massage, sports massage etc. Massage reduces pain, sprain, muscle spasms etc. Massage used to be a luxurious thing but today massage therapy is offered in businesses, airports, clinics and hospitals. In this text, we shall discuss Shiatsu, which is a Japanese type of massage. It is a unique therapy. Let’s see how?



Shiatsu is a Japanese massage. In the Japanese language ‘shiatsu’ translates as ‘finger pressure’. It is a non-invasive technique that is helpful in managing certain disorders. There are various types of shiatsu massages. In ancient times in Japan, the first shiatsu performers were blind. Shiatsu energises the whole body and provides strength to the whole body. It is used for a wide range of musculoskeletal, internal and emotional conditions. There are different types of Shiatsu which have roots in one of the three traditional medical therapies that developed in the early 1900s which includes anma massage and acupuncture. Shiatsu is developed from the unification of western medical knowledge with traditional Japanese manual therapies. Let’s have a look at the principle of Shiatsu !!

Principle of Shiatsu:

One of the key concepts of Japanese medication is Qi (which is pronounced as “chee”). It is the crucial energy in the human body that underlies all workings according to the concerned medical technique.

Qi streams in unambiguous pathways known as meridians. The Shiatsu specialist gets to the Qi through focuses along the meridians called Crucial Focuses/Vital Points. Wellbeing is present when there is plentiful Qi in the meridians and the stream is unhindered. At the point when the Qi becomes lacking or out of equilibrium, or the stream is deterred, side effects emerge. Apparently minor signs arise, for example, standard colds and illnesses, week by week or day to day headaches, body throbs and muscular pain, or stomach related issues. These indicate the imbalance of Qi. Shiatsu stimulates and fits the progression of Qi all through the body.

The Shiatsu specialist is trained to look out for disharmony in the body, even preceding actual signs showing up. Straightforward yet unobtrusive changes indicate an unevenness that, left alone, may advance to where symptoms show up. Balance can be reestablished with legitimate appraisal and regular Shiatsu meetings. Shiatsu professionals may likewise give way of life and activity suggestions for the best of the body.

Health Benefits of Shiatsu:

Shiatsu is a type of therapeutic bodywork in Japan. It is done by pressing, tapping, and soothing, stretching, kneading techniques with light and comfortable clothes over the body. Shiatsu is an oil free massage. Shiatsu is used in various health conditions including emotional ones. Some of the health benefits of Shiatsu are as follows:

  • Shiatsu reduces stress and relaxes the mind.
  • Shiatsu alleviates the muscle stiffness and stimulates the skin and hence makes it healthy.
  • It aids digestion thus helps in improving digestive power and copes up with indigestion and other digestion related issues.
  • Shiatsu is known to be beneficial in a number of nervous system’s conditions because it influences the nervous system positively.
  • Shiatsu is useful in headaches as it relieves stress and modifies the pressures in the body.
  • Shiatsu is helpful in insomnia, fibromyalgia, fatigue and pain in the musculoskeletal system including lower backache, joint pain and neck pain etc.
  • As Shiatsu relaxes the mind and calms the brain thus it provides relief from anxiety, stress and troublesome sleeping.

Ayurvedic Aspect of Shiatsu?

In Ayurvedic texts there are different types of massages with oil and without oil. Nd massage is generally referred to as ‘Abhyanga’. Abhyanga is made up of two words – abhi+anga, which means movement towards the dhatu. In abhyanga, oil is applied and massaged that nourishes the skin and dhatus according to the duration of the same.

There are various types of massages depending on the thing used in massage such udvartana (after oil massage), udgharsana (with powders), utsadana (with pastes) and Acharya Sushruta has mentioned one more type of massage namely Samvahana which is a gentle touch that starts from foot to waist which produce pleasure and happiness to the mind. Now all these have various health benefits and are used in different diseases according to the dosha vitiated.

Another concept according to Ayurveda, depends on the lines of marma (the parts of the body that when injured results in sudden or late death and serious heath damage for sure). Marma is considered a point where two or more types of tissue conjoints such as veins, bones, ligaments and muscles. There are around one hundred and seven marmas in the human body. The mind is considered as one hundred and eighth marma.

In Marma therapy, a very light stimulus is given to these marma places through pressing on these points. It eliminates the blockage from the points of marma which result in psychological and physical strength and relaxation. This is a process or a therapeutic procedure that works with these sensitive and subtle energy points to open the energy channels in the body are called srotas. A chain of positive events occur when these marma points are gently pressed. Marma therapy is very good at various levels such as emotional, spiritual, mental and physical level. Some of the health benefits are as follows:

  • It provides relief from chronic and acute pain, distally and locally.
  • Marma therapy detoxifies the whole body at every level.
  • It results in flawless, healthy and radiant skin.
  • Marma therapy balances all three doshas and results in overall wellness.
  • It significantly enhances and boosts the functioning of the organs and boosts immunity and improves the functioning of systems such as respiratory system, nervous system, digestive system, musculoskeletal system etc.
  • Marma therapy helps in releasing certain secretions and keeps them in normal limits that are required for healthy functioning of the body such as melatonin, serotonin, epinephrine etc.
  • Marma therapy improvises the intellect and cognition of an individual thus helps in making a person intellectual and intelligent. Hence, it sharpens the brain functioning and relaxes the mind and results in sound sleep and helps in overcoming insomnia, stress, depression, mania etc.

Vata dosha resides in the skin and it is the abode of the touch sense. The enchanted course of self-recuperation depends on the right touch applied perfectly positioned. There are various kinds of touches, positive and negative. When the therapist touches the skin and gives massage it leads to the positive energy coming through the body that opens up the blockages and helps in the proper flow of the doshas and Qi as per the basic principle of Shiatsu.

Furthermore, if the condition of the patient is severe or the person is suffering from wasting of the muscles, pain etc then the certain oils such as nirgundi oil and dhanwantharam oil can be used. As these oils effectively reduce pain, inflammation and provide strength to the muscles and hence promotes the functioning of the same. Therefore, oils can be used according to the requirement.

Contact Planet Ayurveda Support Team to provide you the costing/ordering and delivery information at – costing.planetayurveda@gmail.com or Call at 0172-521-4040 (India), +91-172-521-4040 (Outside India) or Whatsapp at (+91) 842-749-4030.


Shiatsu, an overwhelming health provider, is indeed a very brilliant type of massage. It is done through kneading or pressing certain bodily points to correct the blockages that hampered the circulation of ‘Qi’. With Shiatsu, blockages are opened and that helps in establishing the ‘Health’. When it is examined through the ‘ayurvedic lens’ this comes out to be a type of massage or marma therapy. Marma therapy as explained above mimics the Shiatsu. It seems like the principle and names are changed but the procedure and benefits are similar. These are very much similar to each other and have amazing health benefits. Look for a Shiatsu centre or for a Marma therapy centre nearby and get a non-invasive treatment for various acute to chronic ailments. This is fascinating !!

Dr. Vikram Chauhan


Dr. Vikram Chauhan (MD - Ayurveda) is the CEO and Founder of Planet Ayurveda Pvt. Ltd. He is Author of the Book "Ayurveda – God’s Manual For Healing". He is an Ayurveda Expert Serving People worldwide through all the Possible Mediums, Operating from Main Branch in Mohali, India. With his Vast Experience in Herbs and their Applied Uses, he is successfully treating Numerous Patients suffering from Various Ailments with the help of Purest Herbal Supplements, Diet, and Lifestyle, according to the Principles of Ayurveda. For More Details, visit www.PlanetAyurveda.com.

View more posts from this author

Leave a Reply

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