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Benefits of shiatsu:

Shiatsu is a Japanese manual practice, that uses finger pressure on specific points on the body, to relieve pain and promote well-being. It is particularly effective in managing stress. By stimulating pressure points, shiatsu helps relax the nervous system, improve blood circulation and rebalance the body’s vital energy. This technique not only reduces muscle tension, but also promotes a state of mental calm, helping to combat anxiety and improve sleep. In short, shiatsu offers a holistic approach to reducing stress and improving quality of life.

Shiatsu and polyvagal theory:

Polyvagal theory and shiatsu, are two approaches that focus on the well-being of the body and mind, but from different perspectives. Let’s explore how these two disciplines can be integrated, to promote optimal health. Polyvagal theory:

Polyvagal theory, developed by neurophysiologist Stephen Porges, describes how the autonomic nervous system (ANS) regulates physiological and behavioral responses to environmental stimuli. Porges identified three main neural circuits within the vagus nerve, which play a crucial role in managing our reactions to stress and promoting calm and security.

Ventrovagal Circuit: Associated with social connection and emotion regulation, it promotes calm and a feeling of security.

Dorsovagal Circuit: Linked to immobilization and stopping responses, activated in situations of extreme danger.

Sympathetic Circuit: Responsible for fight or flight responses, activated in situations of acute stress.

According to Porges, the ability to regulate these circuits is essential for our emotional and physical well-being. A well-regulated nervous system, allows us to better face daily challenges and maintain a state of internal balance.


Shiatsu is a Japanese therapeutic practice, which uses finger pressure on specific points on the body to promote health and well-being. Based on the principles of traditional Chinese medicine, shiatsu aims to rebalance the flow of vital energy (Qi) within the body. The main techniques used include:

Constant pressure: Applied with thumbs, fingers or palms.

Stretching and Manipulation: To improve flexibility and energy flow.

Rolling and Vibrations: To stimulate relaxation and release of muscle tension. Integrate polyvagal theory with Shiatsu: Integrating polyvagal theory with shiatsu, can offer important benefits for health and well-being. The practice of shiatsu can help stimulate the ventrovagal circuit, promoting a feeling of calm and security. This, in turn, can improve the body’s ability to regulate stress responses.

During a shiatsu session, rhythmic pressure and gentle touch can activate the parasympathetic nervous system, promoting a state of deep relaxation. Additionally, the person-centered approach of shiatsu, which considers the entire individual and not just the symptoms, aligns well with the principles of polyvagal theory, which emphasizes the importance of social connection and emotional regulation.


Combining polyvagal theory with shiatsu, can represent an integrated and effective approach to improve emotional regulation, reduce stress and promote psychophysical balance. Both approaches, focusing on nervous system regulation and energy flow, can work synergistically to support optimal health.