Sybil teaching classSybil Larney regularly teaches Zen Imagery stretching and floor-futon style Shiatsu at the Arizona School of Integrative Studies.

Shiatsu is a Japanese form of bodywork designed to promote health by influencing and improving the state of energy in the body. This modality addresses the client’s energy (chi) through finger pressure on acupoints along the meridians in the body. Students become familiar with basic Oriental theory, the 12 meridians, the five elements, and many of the acupoints for muscular release and energy movement. Zen shiatsu is a specialized form of shiatsu that was developed by Sensei Waturo Ohashi, founder of the Ohashiatsu Institute in New York with branches throughout the world.

Like acupuncture, shiatsu is based on the holistic system of traditional Chinese medicine, where illness is thought to result from imbalances in the natural flow of energy, or qi (pronounced “chee”) through the body.

Shiatsu therapists use finger and palm pressure to energetic pathways, called meridians to improve the flow of qi.

A scientific explanation is that shiatsu calms an overactive sympathetic nervous system, which improves circulation, relieves stiff muscles, and alleviates stress.