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The matter in question is so wide that a guide can not be exhaustive, we try however to list the key points to be touched, in the broader sense and not, to exercise a pleasant and effective massage.


Let's start by saying that a massage is practiced to improve or preserve a person's well-being. The massage performs an action at the point where it is performed, and then produce its beneficial effects in a larger area. A well-executed massage is able to reactivate the circulation, release energy, relax a contracture, thanks to the dilation of blood vessels that, sending more blood to the cells, promotes relaxation of the muscles. The hormonal levels are rebalanced, the tissues are more oxygenated, the toxins eliminated: all this brings a great benefit to the nervous system.


To safely massage a person, it is good to know the body muscles, to know which technique to use in a certain area and with which force to intervene.


We can divide the massages essentially into three types: shiatsu; lymphatic drainage; reflexology (aesthetic massage deserves a separate discussion).


What is Shiatsu?


This Japanese name means "pressure with the thumb" and comes from a philosophy that goes beyond the need to soothe a pain, it is something very spiritual, which perceives the disease as the result of a larger imbalance (lifestyle, tension , attitudes) of the subject treated. According to shiatsu, energy spreads in the body according to the tracks, the meridians, which are in close connection with the vital organs. From this perspective, illness and pain are nothing but the result of blocked energy (tsubo) within these channels. The energy will be stimulated when it fails and will be calmed when it occurs in excess: everything in the body must be in equilibrium.


It is important to know the energetic reticulum of the human body, because it is not always necessary to treat the painful area to heal it (eg to treat the arms and legs to ease a pain in the head). In practice, shiatsu uses the pressure of the palms of the hands, this to detect the presence of a tsubo in one point of the body.

Indicative map of the meridians


Lung Meridian: begins in the central part of the abdomen, descends below the navel and then radiates up to the throat and from there into the left arm, up to the thumb. Its function is to introduce energy that stimulates the defense of the body and the elimination of toxic substances. Symptoms: difficulty breathing, contraction of the chest muscles, pain in the thumb. Disorders: heaviness, headaches, lack of energy, inability to relax, depression, obstacles to social relationships.


Meridian large intestine: from the tip of the index finger it runs through the outside of the left arm, reaches the shoulder and branches towards the nose and towards the intestine. Its function is to promote the work of the lungs and eliminate waste. Symptoms: headache, tonsillitis, problems in the pelvis area, diarrhea. Disorders: intestinal problems, dry nasal passages, neck and arm stiffness, dull eyes.


Meridian of the stomach: starts next to the nose up to the forehead and goes down to the tip of the foot. Its function is to regulate the stomach, the esophagus, the menstrual cycle and sexual functions. Symptoms: bulimia and anorexia, vomiting, gastritis. Disorders: back pain, tiredness, flu, pains in the heart area.


Meridian of the spleen: from inside the big toe it goes up to the throat passing through the diaphragm and the heart. Rule digestion and intestine. Symptoms: slow digestion, pains in the spine. Disorders: memory loss, fatigue, thirst, rigidity.


Heart meridian: starts from the heart and branches towards the eye, the little finger and the navel. It regulates the circulation of blood and adapts external stimuli to the organism. Symptoms: sweaty hands, restlessness, shyness, poor will. Disorders: solar plexus tension, heart problems, throat irritation, digestive difficulties, introversion.


Meridian of the small intestine: starts from the tip of the little finger, passes from the outside of the hand, reaches the shoulder and divides there: a branch towards the belly, the other towards the left temple. It conditions the functionality of the whole organism. Symptoms: restlessness and fatigue. Disorders: anemia, heaviness in the legs, appendicitis, cycle irregularities, migraines.


Bladder Meridian: start in the inner corner of the eye and passing through the forehead and head through the back, up to the tip of the foot, passing through the back of the leg and the heel. Check the functionality of the bodies responsible for purification. Symptoms: headache, tendency to bend the back, disorders of the uterus, cervical and neck pains. Disorders of the vegetative nervous system.


Meridian Meridian of the kidney: starts under the fifth toe, raises the arch of the foot, passes through the inside of the leg and branches off at the groin level towards the throat and towards the hip. It regulates the endocrine system and purifies the blood. Symptoms: dry skin, brittle bones, frequent urination, low back pain, insomnia, stiffness, chronic fatigue. Disorders: anxiety, muscle tension, hypersensitivity.


Pericardial meridian: starts on the chest and branches towards the middle and lower abdomen. Adjusts circulatory functions. Symptoms: difficulty swallowing, tonsillitis, arrhythmia, chest pain. Disorders: insomnia, concentration problems, high emotionality.

Meridian of the triple heater: starts from the tip of the ring, passes through the back of the hand and reaches the inside of the shoulder. It regulates the general functionality of the organism. Symptoms: renit and tonsillitis, increased volume of cervical lymph nodes, fluid stasis.


Meridian of the biliary vesicle: it starts from the outside of the eye and then proceeds to zig zag towards the top of the head and towards the tip of the foot. Distributes the nutrients to the body. Symptoms: tiredness of the eyes and limbs up to now, constipation or diarrhea, loss of appetite or increase in fat and weight. Disorders: exaggerated emotion, shyness, indecision, fatigue.


Liver Meridian: from the hallux punat up to the top of the head, through the inside of the leg and from the pubic area. It is attached to the storage of nutrients and energy to carry out physical activities. Symptoms: vertigo, anorexia, muscle stiffness, difficult digestion, inflammation of the genital organs. Disorders: intolerance, obstinacy, impatience, impulsivity, bulimia.


Governor vase: starts from the perlvial cavity and descends to the perineum, while in the other direction it rises up to the head and then reaches the forehead. Control and regulate the flow of energy in the meridians. Symptoms: emotional hypersensitivity, anorexia, headache, back pain, paralysis.


Conception vessel: from the pelvic cavity it crosses the pubic area and passes through the abdomen and the throat temina under the eye cavities. Regulates the meridian network. Symptoms: disorders of the urogenital system, bladder infections, gastro-intestinal problems, abdominal swelling, hernia.


Massage techniques



It is the maneuver that precedes all the other types of massage, slow and very light movements to be performed with the palm of the hand, with a full hand. The hands must slide by changing and must follow the direction of the muscles, along the back, arms and legs.



This technique is very similar to that of "touch", but should be performed with greater energy. In this way the deeper layers of the skin will be treated, which will transmit the effect to the underlying tissues. It is used to mobilize hemetomas and to give elasticity to the tissues. It will start by rubbing the tissues adjacent to the area to be treated (painful) and then going directly to massage the affected region. Linear movements and slow transversely to the muscular fibers and tendons will be practiced. During the friction the fingertips of the fingers will be used, especially on the flat muscles, causing pain in the inflamed area. It is therefore advisable to interrupt the clutch frequently and alternate it with the touch.


The pressure has some common features with the clutch. In fact it consists of a slow and deep friction carried out with the fingertips of the thumb or other fingers together, or with the closed pugn and the palm of the hand in case they have to deal with soft parts, rich in muscular masses. The hand and fingers must be in a vertical position with respect to the area under examination.



Close strokes, rhythmical, to be carried out more or less veloemene with the outer sides of the hands. This technique involves a mechanical stimulation of the muscles, increasing their vitality and accelerating the speed of the endo-venous current.



With the punctation of the fingers or the palm of the hand, rapid and continuous shocks are transmitted, which will tone the muscle.



They pinch their shoulders, using their thumbs and other fingers. The same is true for gembe and back.



Loose movements at the joints.



This technique is used to squeeze the tissues and should be practiced on the thighs, buttocks and regions with voluminous muscle masses. It starts with a palmar grip of both hands, squeezes the muscle, lifts it and then relaxes it. It is necessary to continue for the entire length of the muscle. It is a technique that requires exercise and dexterity.



  • the person to be massaged must be lying on a level that is not too hard or too soft;
  • the environment must be heated and the patient must be covered immediately after finishing the treatment, in order not to risk contractures;
  • if the back appears arched, place a pillow under the knees or under the abdomen depending on whether the patient is lying down or lying down;
  • use an oil or an ointment to make massage operations easier and more pleasant;
  • warm up your hands before starting to massage;
  • to exert more pressure, use your weight and not your strength;
  • do not limit yourself to massaging only one part of the body, the sensation for the patient must be uniform and pleasant, so if you treat the right side of the back then go to treat also the left;
  • do not jump from one side of the body to the other, perform fluid and continuous movements, as if following a path;
  • do not massage for less than 30/40 minutes, if you do not have this time available, postponed.

  • 27/08/2018