By using a table with bars secured overhead for balance and support, this technique uses one footed strokes to provide the most comfortable, deepest tissue massage available.
Ashiatsu, (“Ashi” means “foot”, and “Atsu” means “pressure”) has been traced back as far as the 5th Century in Kerala, India, as part of a martial art training. The Chinese were then credited with bringing it to Japan, and from there it could be found in varying forms in Fiji, Hawaii, Thailand, and now in the U.S.
"The Western spin on barefoot massage is known to improve posture, relieve pain and stress, treat spinal problems, and provide an incredibly deep massage, all while still being gentle. "With
regular massage, the No. 1 complaint is that the therapist didn't go deep enough,"founder Ruthie Hardee says. "People are yearning for deep tissue work, and -- in ashiatsu -- because the therapist is
standing straight up, using her center of gravity, and her thigh, knee, and leg are working up the lumbar and the erectors, that's like six hands duct taped together."
For instance, the prestigious Stein Eriksen Lodge in Park City, Utah. Judith Sullivan, spa director at the lodge, says, "If you need the deep work, this is the best. The key word here is if someone says 'I just can't find someone who can go deep enough,' you know, that's the kind of person that it's great for."
(Originally published in Body Sense magazine, Spring/Summer 2005.
Copyright 2005. Associated Bodywork and Massage Professionals. All rights reserved.)
In some cases Ashiatsu is contraindicated - for example those with Hypertension, Varicose Veins / Phlebitis / Thrombosis, recent surgery, Protruding or Rupture Discs, or Osteoporosis as well as Pregnant women, and those on medications such as blood thinner, heart medications, or have been on corticosteroids.
Ashiatsu is available in 60 minute treatments for $80
This was a demonstration treatment done at the World Massage Festival tradeshow.
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