Time To Unwind

Do you feel tense and stressed?  Here at Ranch Hand Massage, my goal is to help you release that tension so you feel better when you leave than you did when you came.  To that end, I’ve studied different types of massage therapies from around the world.  One of those was the technique of Ashiatsu.

Ashiatsu comes from the Japanese words Ashi (meaning “foot”) and Atsu (meaning “pressure”).  It is a gravity-assisted, deep-tissue massage.  Using their feet and body weight, the therapist delivers deep, broad, consistent pressure  This is ideal for large muscle groups like the upper back.


A Brief History of Ashiatsu 

The practice of barefoot massages is old and its exact origins are unclear.  It’s believed they originated from a practice known as Chavutti Thiruma in Kerala, India around 2000 years ago.  This technique was used by martial artists to increase flexibility and increase recovery time from injuries.  Many different styles of barefoot massage evolved from this across Asia and the Pacific islands.  Variants are found in Japan, Thailand, China, Fiji, the Philippines, and Hawaii, each with their own different styles and props.

In Japan, this practice was mixed with Shiatsu (literally “finger pressure,” a form of massage therapy based on Chinese Acupuncture) to create a form of massage that’s gentler and less stressful on the body.


Benefits Of Barefoot Massage

Ashiatsu has often been referred to as the “deepest most luxurious massage”. It’s been known to improve posture and range of motion. It will significantly reduce or eliminate chronic muscle pain, and improve bodily functions. The deep compression strokes stimulate blood circulation and both the lymphatic and parasympathetic nervous system. You’ll experience a higher sense of balance and well-being within the body. 

Normally, massage uses elbows and thumbs, but these can feel sharp and unpleasant.  Ashiatsu uses the heels, arch, and flat of the foot to spread the pressure over a broader area for a gentler experience.  Overhead bars allow the therapist complete control over the weight and pressure they place on your body, letting gravity do the work.


Is Ashiatsu for you? 

For the most part, massage in general is safe for the majority of the population. However, given the nature of the barefoot massages, there are some cases where it shouldn’t be used.  Due to the added weight and pressure applied to the body with Ashiatsu, women who are pregnant or trying to conceive should avoid this treatment. In addition, people with high blood pressure, advanced diabetes, a compromised immune system, acute kidney and liver conditions, are using certain medications, or had surgical implant surgery recently may be at risk of complications. If you have these conditions, speak with a therapist before obtaining treatment.  They will determine if ashiatsu is appropriate for your physical condition.


Ask About My Massage Therapies Today 

Ashiatsu is one of several options I have to help you relax and relieve stress.  It’s a deep tissue massage that aims to be gentler and longer-lasting than other types.  It may be just what you’re looking for.  If you want to know more, feel free to ask me about it.  You can contact me with any questions you have.  If you want to try it out for yourself, then schedule an appointment.  I’m alway happy to help people feel better!