Shiatsu means “finger pressure” in Japanese and is a traditional hands-on therapy originated in Japan. It was believed that the practice of this massage was developed by a Japanese, Tokujiro Namikoshi at a age of seven, developed the technique of pressing with his thumbs and palms as he tried to nurse his mother who suffered from rheumatoid arthritis. In 1957, Shiatsu was officially recognised by Japan as a separate and distinct therapy.

There are also other styles of Shiatsu developed by the adherents of Namikoshi school which is referred as Derivative Shiatsu.

  • Meridian Shiatsu developed by Tadashi Izawa.
  • Zen Shiatsu developed by Shizuto Masunaga.
  • Ohashiatsu developed by Wataru Ohashi.
  • Quantum Shiatsu developed by Pauline Sasaki and Cliff Andrews.
  • Movement Shiatsu developed by Bill Palmer and David Ventura.
  • Yoseido Shiatsu developed by Yuichi Kawada
  • Aze Shiatsu developed by Shigeru Onoda
  • Shinso Shiatsu developed by Ted Saito
  • Zen-Touch Shiatsu developed by Seymour Koblin
  • Bodywork Shiatsu developed by Carl Dubitsky and others
  • Shiatsu Yasuragi developed by Arturo Valenzuela Serrano

Most popular Shiatsu method was Zen Shiatsu which is based on the holistic system of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), where illness is resulted from imbalances in the natural flow of energy, or qi through the body.