Prior to the treatment it is advisable to not eat too heavily, or to drink alcohol or a lot of coffee.
Loose, warm, comfortable clothing or tracksuit is a good idea, as the Shiatsu is received lying down or sitting fully clothed on a futon on the floor.
A treatment lasts for approximately 1 hour. The initial session may be slightly longer for a check over any medical history and in follow up sessions there is time for a chat about any changes or any thing else that needs mentioning. There is then about 45 minutes for the Shiatsu session.
During the treatment, attention is given to the comfort of the receiver. Cushions and blankets are available for extra support and warmth. The treatment is generally comforting and relaxing to receive; any feedback during or after the treatment is always welcome. Occasionally some pressure points may have a slight sore feeling which often indicates an area in that will benefit from the work.
The practitioner will usually start with a Hara diagnosis from below the rib cage and from this reading will identify the two meridians relating to organs that the treatment is based on. Using this diagnosis, observation and a variety of thumb or palm pressure, acupuncture points, light stretches and gentle rotations, the practitioner works to balance the person's energy.
It is nice to allow yourself a few minutes to relax immediately after the Shiatsu and a chat if there is anything you wish to discuss.
The treatment can help bring your mind more present to your body and how you are feeling which can help allow the body find its own healing capacity – you may initially feel more relaxed, tired or energized. These feelings can soon pass for a feeling of greater well-being and feeling more balanced and centered in yourself and 'at home' in your body.
The practitioner may suggest some beneficial acupuncture points or exercises or dietary recommendations.
If possible, quiet time and space can help to optimise the treatment; drinking plenty of water can help to flush any toxins released in the treatment. Any effects (emotional, tiredness, etc.) from the treatment soon pass within 24 hours to allow an increased feeling of well-being.