Home Articles of Interest WinterFest 2023 Reflections Jannet Okazaki

WinterFest 2023 Reflections Jannet Okazaki

by Cecilia Salbuchi

I appreciated being able to introduce Winterfest attendees to Shiatsu. I have found in my own martial arts journey that it is beneficial to explore new and different areas of knowledge to inform my continued development. In the Shiatsu presentation, we focused on how to move the body in a more fluid and continuous manner that kept the body open to delivering energy. My session was probably a bit unusual for a karate event. Some overlaps between Shiatsu and martial arts include such areas as the focus on the body and the development of alignment in our stance, use of pressure points, breathing to improve the flow of Chi/Qi, mind/intent and its connection to the body. 
I learned Shiatsu from my grandmother who learned from the founder, Tokujiro Namikoshi, at his University in Tokyo, Japan during the 1940s.  My grandmother, Kayoko Fukabori, practiced for over 40 years, and passed her knowledge to me because she felt it had great value. 
In healing as well as martial arts, the goal is to deliver energy into another person. Hardness and tension can trap the energy in one’s own body. To deliver energy, you must be able to release tension in your own body, move the body as a whole connected unit, and visualize intent so the body can perform from the picture the mind paints. Shiatsu gives the martial artist a different context to learn about energy delivery and hopefully an opportunity to try these concepts in their martial arts. Working with a partner in the session allowed participants to get immediate feedback on energy delivery.  We worked on having a calm mind, healing intent, good alignment to deliver energy, and to feel the proper connection with the person receiving treatment to develop proprioception.
It is my sincerest hope that participants received some insights into energy movement and healing that will help them along their martial arts journey.

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