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What is Watsu(R)?
Breaking the PAIN Cycle!
People with pain avoid physical activity to prevent increasing their
pain. Reduced mobility leads to limited range of motion, muscle
tightness, weakness and emotional stress. This cycle goes on and on...
Watsu provides a way to
interrupt this pain cycle!
How does a Watsu treatment work?
is a form of gentle bodywork that
takes place in a pool of body- temperature water... but
is far more than merely a massage in water!
Wearing bathing suits, using the carefully crafted
technique, Dr. Seidlitz guides your free-floating body through the
water with gentle stretches, utilizing acupressure points and massage to
increase range of motion and blood circulation. This promotes
neuromuscular re-education using gentle mobilization of joint and soft
tissue, decreases muscle spasm, and improves metabolism in the painful
areas. Releasing pain can improve a person’s emotional state and their
physical well being.
Watsu, or "Wat"er-Shiat"su"
began at the School of Shiatsu and Massage, and is a federally registered service mark used to describe
the method Harold Dull developed as an Aquatic Bodywork form. He
applied the stretches and principles of the Zen Shiatsu he had studied
in Japan with floating people in warm water. In the Orient,
stretching is an ancient technique of opening the channels through which
our Chi energy flows, even older than acupuncture.
is based on stretching, which strengthens muscle and increases
flexibility. Warm water, which many associate with the body's
deepest states of waking relaxation, is the ideal medium. The
support of water takes weight off the vertebrae and allows the spine to
be moved in ways impossible on land. Gentle, gradual twists and
pulls relieve the pressure a rigid spine places on nerves and helps undo
any dysfunctioning this pressure can cause to the organs serviced by
those nerves. The Watsu
receiver experiences this greater flexibility and freedom. During
a range of emotions can come up and be released into the process of
continuous flow. This reprograms receivers to face life out of the
water with greater equanimity and flexibility.
Another principle of Zen Shiatsu, that of connecting with the breath,
takes on a new dimension in Watsu.
On land, the breathing is coordinated with leaning into points. In
water, our most basic move is the Water Breath Dance, in which we float
someone in our arms and let them sink a little as they breathe out and
rise with them as we both breathe in. Repeated over and over at
the beginning of a Watsu,
this creates a connection that can be carried into all the stretches and
moves. This Water Breath Dance, and its stillness, is returned to
throughout the session.
Experiencing both giving and receiving this most nurturing form of
bodywork can help heal whatever wounds of separation we carry and renew
in us our sense of connection and oneness with others. For this
is Re-bonding Therapy. Watsu
is used around the world by professional body workers, physical
therapists, and psychologists, as well as the general public. As
few as THREE SESSIONS can show AMAZING benefits for
and tightness in the
Anticipating future sessions can help chronic pain sufferers get through
periods of break-through pain. Releasing pain can improve one's
emotional state and physical well being.
Watsu is valuable for these special
needs and other populations such as the elderly, teenagers, children,
and pregnant women.
in part from the
School of Shiatsu and Massage handout entitled "WHAT IS WATSU®?"
For more information about Watsu
or other body work instruction, please contact the School of Shiatsu and
Massage, Middletown, California, at 800-693-3296, or at the Worldwide
Aquatic Bodyworker Association (WABA) at: