Shiatsu is an acupressure massage based on the principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine, which aims to restore balance to both the mind and body to leave you relaxed yet invigorated with a general feeling of well being. The underlying philosophy is that chi, or vital energy, flows through channels, or meridians, in your body and that any disruption in chi flow can result in symptoms of ill health. Shiatsu can restore balance to chi flow, address areas of stagnation that can result in tension, and support any deficiency that may manifest in more debilitating symptoms.
Shiatsu normally takes place on a futon on the floor but it is possible to use a chair if lying down is difficult. You remain fully clothed and it is recommended that you wear loose, comfortable clothing. The session lasts approximately one hour and consists of acupressure, gentle stretches, rotations and magnet therapy. You may be given exercises, dietary advice or acupressure points to use between sessions to help maintain chi balance and symptom relief through to the next appointment.
Marcia da Silva Pinto MRSS DTM has been working in the field of dance as a performer, choreographer and teacher spanning a period of over twenty years. She developed a particular interest in how movement and dance can reflect and shape our state of mind. She studied Dance and Movement Therapy at Roehampton Institute, London in addition to her earlier studies in Psychology at PUC University, Rio de Janeiro.
During her dance career Marcia often treated her own aches and pains using techniques such as ‘DO-IN’ (a massage method which works on pressure points) and also practised the anti-exercises and self-awareness principles of Therese Bertherat. These approaches helped her to develop a greater understanding of body awareness and sensitivity towards the subtle internal changes of energy flow. Her dance teaching methodology incorporates a range of effective exercises which develops flexibility through stretch, correct posture and energy through breathing. Her teaching grew not only with respect to the aesthetics and technicality of dance but also to integrate a sense of self through body awareness. Shiatsu has been a natural career progression for Marcia and has given her the opportunity to work with individuals in the pursuit of health and wellbeing by practising this Japanese body-work therapy. Marcia is a fully-qualified Shiatsu practitioner from the London College of Shiatsu and is a member of the Shiatsu Society.
“I’d just completed a physically and mentally stressful period at work when I came to the Letchworth Centre for my first Shiatsu massage. I was certainly tired, with painful symptoms in my feet and that tension in my shoulders, which is an all too common side-effect of modern life.
With a welcoming and reassuring conversation to open the session, Marcia was smoothly able to identify what I needed and how the therapy could help me.
The massage itself was comfortable and flowed beautifully, I found myself drifting away into deep relaxation to the fluid movements and Marcia’s gentle voice. Clearly tailoring the massage to address my specific problem areas, she was able to diminish the pain in my feet by the end of the session.
What really delighted me though was just how incredibly relaxed I was when the treatment was over – one could see it in my posture, hear it in my voice and I felt calm yet energised for a good afterwards!
I’ll be booking to see Marcia again and I’ve recommended the treatment to several friends.” H.O. (client)