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About Shiatsu Therapy Training at Our Minneapolis School

14 Oct 2016

Did you know that CenterPoint was the first institution to offer training in shiatsu in Minnesota? 

That’s right. Our co-founder and director Cari Johnson Pelava opened the Minnesota Center for Shiatsu Studies in 1992. (That school merged with Northern Lights School of Massage Therapy in 2001, and the name was changed to CenterPoint.)

 And as far as we know, we remain the only shiatsu therapy school in our state.  

IMG_2953Shiatsu is a bodywork technique which originated in Japan, and one of the advantages of our school is that Cari actually trained with shiatsu masters (or sensei) in Japan. Her original training was in California with Dr. Kaneko, a pioneer in shiatsu training in the U.S. Later, she apprenticed with teachers in Japan, learning both shiatsu and basic Asian medicine.

Shiatsu Includes Various Styles

Did you know that shiatsu isn’t just one technique? The term ‘shiatsu’ covers a variety of styles. As shiatsu began to emerge in Japan, each practitioner developed their own particular style. And today there several schools in Japan that teach shiatsu from the approach of the school’s founder, like Shizuto Masunaga and Tokujiro Namikoshi.  

Cari apprenticed with Sensei Namikoshi. Namikoshi’s style – or Nippon Shiatsu – represents shiatsu as it is most commonly practiced in Japan. Some of the other styles include:

  • Barefoot (Macrobiotic) Shiatsu, which incorporates a macrobiotic lifestyle
  • Healing Shiatsu Touch, which includes mindfulness meditation
  • Jin Shin Do, a body-mind acupressure style
  • Ohashiatsum, emphasizing nurturing communication between the therapist and the client
  • Quantum Shiatsu, an approach based on the ‘energetic body,’ which includes much more than just the physical body
  • Watsu, or water shiatsu, where the client is supported in warm water
  • Zen shiatsu, developed by Sensei Masunaga, placing emphasis on the energy meridians

Here at CenterPoint we teach two styles. Our shiatsu students first learn in the same manner as Japanese practitioners do – being trained in Namikoshi shiatsu, a full body technique. Students also learn Western anatomy and physiology concurrently with shiatsu techniques, since these sciences are important components of this style of shiatsu.

Later, our shiatsu students move on to shiatsu anma. Shiatsu anma is the basis of all traditional Japanese healing techniques involving the hands. This is the style taught by Cari’s original shiatsu instructor, Dr. Kaneko. As a part of this training, students are also introduced to the basics of Traditional Chinese Medicine as well as the advanced shiatsu techniques Cari has learned from her various teachers.

To find out more about training in shiatsu therapy at CenterPoint, why not contact us today for a campus visit?  




Call us today at 952-562-5200!