What Is Shiatsu?

Shiatsu is a form of Japanese bodywork that uses pressure along specific body pathways to balance the flow of ki, or chi, energy.  Using the same map of the body as an acupuncturist, the shiatsu practitioner uses palms, thumbs and occasionally knees and elbows to stimulate and nurture the tsubos (acupressure points) located  throughout the body. Gentle stretching and rotation of joints add to the experience, which can be likened to  taking a tour of your body's movement possibilities.  Shiatsu is performed on the floor on a large futon.  Recipients wear loose, comfortable clothing during their session.  Receivers of shiatsu leave with a sense of both energy and relaxation, which can last for many days.

Who can benefit from Shiatsu?

People come to shiatsu for many reasons. Some come for relief of specific physical complaints: back or neck pain, headaches, digestive problems, insomnia, exercise-related injury,  etc.  Others come for stress relief, finding the relaxing effects of shiatsu a welcome balance to the mental and emotional demands of a busy life. Still others come at a point in their lives where they're ready for a change  -  physical or sometimes spiritual - and find shiatsu very helpful .  Most people, no matter what reasons bring them to the session room, end up making it a part of their program of self-care, finding that life is easier when they are balanced and their energy is flowing. Weekly, monthly or yearly, a shiatsu session reminds the body and spirit of what peace feels like.

How long is a Shiatsu session?

Depending upon the practitioner, shiatsu sessions last from 60 to 90 minutes.

How much does it cost?

Between $80 and $90 per session, depending upon the practitioner.  Packages with a reduced rate are available.


Bob Modaff
has been practicing shiatsu since graduating from the Ohashi Institute in New York in 1992. In 1996, after receiving his teaching certification from the Ohashi Institute, Bob and his family moved to the Twin Cities where he started ThreeSmoothStones in the Seward neighborhood of Minneapolis. He has taught yoga and shiatsu in Minneapolis, Chicago and New York and brings years of experience to his practice. Hours: Tuesday through Friday, mornings and evenings, by appointment.  Fees: $90 for 1 1/4 hours. Package of 5 sessions for $375.  (Sales tax not included.) 

Kevin Coughlin
has been practicing Zen Shiatsu since 1999 and studied  at both the Ohashiatsu Center in Minneapolis and Ohashiatsu Chicago. He brings years of yoga study to his shiatsu practice. He is available, by appointment, Friday through Monday. Sessions are $80. Package of five sessions available for $325. (Sales tax not included.)

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