What is Ashiatsu?

A modern refinement of ancient techniques, Ashiatsu is a barefoot massage technique using deep strokes from the therapists’ feet. This treatment is highly effective for those who suffer from chronic neck and back pain or spinal issues, as well as for athletes and those who enjoy deep tissue massage. It combines elements of Thai Massage, Japanese Shiatsu, and India’s Keralite massage with underlying dynamics in the study of traditional Chinese Medicine. The pressure can be as light or as deep as you need it to be. IT IS NOT PAINFUL! It is a very smooth massage with people often commenting that it feels like being massaged with large hands.  There are several advantages to a barefoot massage including: being able to warm up muscles faster due to the feets’ larger surface area, and deeper pressure, if needed, because it uses gravity and body weight to provide pressure.    Different styles of barefoot massage have been in many different cultures for hundreds of years – now it is available from Sara Albee, New Orleans only certified ashiatsu therapist.  An ashiatsu session at Nola Bliss Massage is an experience in therapeutic massage like never before:  deep, effective, relaxing, grounding, and safe.

How does Ashiatsu Work?

Ashiatsu is performed on a massage table. During treatment, the therapist uses the parallel bars overhead for balance while applying slow, gliding foot pressure and compression to strategic points along the spine and body. Ashiatsu’s one and two-footed strokes distribute pressure evenly over a large area of the body, providing a deep and relaxing massage without the pain often associated with traditional deep-tissue massage.

When properly applied, Ashiatsu techniques elongate the spine and surrounding muscles, as the gliding srokes made with the feet produce a “push-pull-pumping” effect.  This results in compression of the soft tissue surrounding the joints, which promotes mobilization, allowing the spine to resume its natural position.

What will my massage feel like?

Ashiatsu offers deep, broad compression without sharp discomfort.  Ashiatsu is meant to feel more like a mesmerizing Swedish massage – deep broad pressured flowing strokes – with no pain.  Feel an awakening of your natural healing potential through true deep relaxation.

Is Ashiatsu for you?

Clients of every age and size can benefit from this deep tissue massage, famous for back and hip pain relief, and deep relaxation. Ashiatsu is particular popular for people who enjoy deep tissue massage, athletes, and individuals with thick musculature. It is also recommended for individuals who suffer from chronic neck and back pain, scoliosis, bulging/herniated discs, sciatica and degenerative disc disease.

Although beneficial for many, Ashiatsu is not for everyone.  It is not recommended during pregnancy, within 6 weeks of any surgery, or within 9 months of breast implants.  Please discuss any potential health concerns with me before trying ashiatsu, we can work together to see if this work is right for you.

Is Ashiatsu safe?

When done by a Certified AOBT Therapist, Ashiatsu is safe, effective, and painless, not to mention profoundly relaxing. The amount of pressure is carefully monitored throughout the session, and easily adjusted for the clients comfort.  Ashiatsu is not a ‘No Pain, No Gain’ massage – the safety and well-being of the client is our foremost concern.

Ashiatsu Benefits

  • Deeper than a typical Deep Tissue session, but feels like a Swedish massage.
  • You can now experience pain-free, bruise-free pressure on the deeper layers of muscles, tendons, ligaments and connective tissues without wincing, clenching or holding your breath from pokey elbows, knuckles or thumbs!
  • AOBT movements along the para-spinals and the lumbar region help to open the intervertebral disc space, increasing the discs height which allows the nucleus pulposus inside the disc to assume a more central position within the annular fibers, relieving irritation on the spinal nerves and connective tissue.
  • Long expansive head to toe strokes stimulate the lymphatic and parasympathetic nervous systems faster, creating a sense of well being, improvement of bodily functions, and homeostatis.
  • Typically, just 20 minutes of Ashiatsu can do what takes an HOUR of Swedish massage to achieve! Bring out the drool buckets and get ready to see dramatic improvement in your tissue!
  • Centripetal and Centrifugal movements in our technique increase circulation bringing more oxygenated blood to the area being treated and help release toxins at a very high rate.
  • Long, consistent compression from a well trained foot releases adhesions, trigger points and chronic holding patterns, and encourages your body’s natural healing potential.
  • Myofascial stretching with vertebral traction elongate the spine, improving movement and posture while relieving chronic pain and spasm.
  • Deep, broad pressure improves flexibility and range of motion.