Shiatsu case study and analysis

Shiatsu case study – Helping stress and aiding relaxation

Explanation of Shiatsu terms

According to the Oriental Theory of medicine there are 14 channels or meridians where vital energy/life force Ki (Chi) flows in. Each with a specific physical and psychological function which combines together to make the whole person function as one. Outside elements and internal systemic changes constantly impact to change and influence these energy patterns causing imbalances all the time.

Sometimes, these imbalances lead to illnesses or symptoms but other time the effects are unnoticeable. So unlike in the Western concepts of good or bad health and ill or healthy, implying a black and white view that you are either well or ill there are no certainties in the Oriental Theory, just imbalances. A diagnosis isn’t bad or good, it is just the way things are/were at the time. It is a naturalist way of thinking.

Jitsu/Kyo
These are the two terms used in Zen Shiatsu to explain a diagnosis, they are similar to Yin/Yang, Jistu means too much or too full (excessive) and Kyo means empty or too little (deficient) of Ki. Jitsu or Kyo the symptoms associated with the imbalance are similar. It is thought that Kyo causes Jitsu to be too full by giving up most of its’ Ki and Jitsu symptoms more manifest while Kyo symptoms are hidden and underlying.

So the treatment is about identifying and bringing these two opposing forces of Ki (in the 2 meridians) back to the middle to harmonize and balance, thereby harmonizing and balancing the whole system. The body (and mind) then takes over and translate this into physical and mental wellbeing. This is a natural and holistic way of maintaining health.

Shiatsu case study introduction

Name: A.S
Age: 28
Gender: Male
Occupation: Banking & Investment

A.S came to me in response to one of my adverts. He was interested in Shiatsu to help him relax due to a very demanding working conditions in one of the major banks in the City.

Main complaint (on 1st session): Very stressed and busy at work especially last two weeks, restless sleep and stiff shoulders.

Medical History: Nothing worth mentioning

Secondary Complaint/s: Not applicable

1st TREATMENT – 25/06/08
JITSU: Perricardium
KYO: Bladder
Diagnosis: Stressed at work, stiff shoulders

2nd TREATMENT – 01/07/08
JITSU: Liver
KYO: Bladder
Diagnosis: No problems to mention but possibly fatigued after work, observed stiff calves on both legs and stiff shoulders.

3rd TREATMENT – 08/07/08
JITSU: Stomach
KYO: Pericardium
Diagnosis: Forgotten to eat, hungry, work situation much better now, much less stress but still busy.

4th TREATMENT – 17/07/08
JITSU: Pericardium
KYO: Bladder
Diagnosis: Tight chest, possibly anxiety at work, over use of larynx/vocal chords. Stiff neck, shoulders and stiff calves. Felt relaxed after the session, commented Shiatsu has helped him to relax and is happy with progress.

5th TREATMENT – 22/07/08
JITSU: Heart
KYO: Gallbladder
Diagnosis: Arrived delayed at work, had to make phone calls re work while at the session, so did the session in 2 parts, 1st in sitting position with no diagnosis, 2nd side position with diagnosis, stretches and meridians.

6th TREATMENT – 29/07/08
JITSU: Heart
KYO: Stomach
Diagnosis: Took in a lot of information at work, but still much easier at work. The main benefit of Shiatsu so far is being able to relax. Also felt hungry after the session.

Shiatsu Analysis

Main Complaints
Pericardium meridians’ physical function is to make Heart pump and to regulate Heart and Lungs and psychologically it governs the ability to relax and sleep. Bladder meridian is in charge of appropriate responses to stress and instincts, therefore being busy and stressed at work can be leading to Pericardium and Bladder deficiencies causing symptoms such as anxiety, restless sleep (Pericardium) and stiff back and shoulders (Bladder).

Correlations
As described above, the diagnosis of Pericardium Jitsu and Bladder Kyo on the 1st session correlates with symptoms of being stressed at work.

Liver meridian is in charge of metabolism so tiredness or fatigue felt after work is a symptom of Liver being Jitsu on the 2nd session and Bladder is still Kyo which can produce symptoms of stiff shoulders.

By the 3rd session Bladder symptoms have moved on successfully, at least temporarily but Pericardium still shows Kyo. This is possibly because Pericardium meridian also is in charge of larynx and vocal chords. As A.S’s work involves a lot of talking this may be a longer term occurrence. Stomach Jitsu could be because of a simple reason such as forgetting to eat or an upset Stomach.

The old Pericardium/Bladder is back again on the very next session, this, may be a usual type of diagnosis for A.S because of his work situation although he states that he is feeling very much at ease now.

The 5th session was a little difficult for this client, he had a busy day and was delayed leaving, and even on the session had to make calls to a colleague at work. Heart is the meridian of anxiety, strong emotions and talking a lot while Gallbladder when deficient produces symptoms of irritability but also the drive and the need to get things done is a very Gallbladder trait. Therefore Heart Jitsu Gallbladder Kyo diagnosis is very relevant to the situation.

And on the 6th session the diagnosis is again Heart Jitsu and Stomach Kyo, as explained to A.S, Stomach is the meridian of ingesting Psychologically this could also be things at work where he often has to take in a lot of information. Feeling hungry after the session is a good sign as the mind and body is now in sync.

Conclusions
Given A.S’s lifestyle the range of diagnosis so far reflects the possible range of symptoms that could show up. He came to me for help in being able to relax and calm down after a week of intense work and so far is very happy with the results. As we continue with further sessions my aim is for A.S to be able to feel calm and relaxed for longer periods between sessions. I have also noticed A.S is very flexible and supple and this coupled with his good health means there is not much that Shiatsu need to do in terms of fixing health problems. Therefore Shiatsu can be a part of a healthy balanced lifestyle instead. It could also be a way of preventing future stress related problems.

About The Author

Ken Hettiarachi has been a full time Shiatsu practitioner since November 2007 with a steady stream of clients mostly referred by other clients. He has experience in dealing with many conditions and gets very positive feedback from clients with words such as “calming”, ”nurturing” and “caring” mentioned a lot.

Ken is a very calm, caring practitioner and his sessions are profoundly nurturing and that is very special

For more information visit Ken’s therapist page here


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