Founded in the past century by Masunaga Senseï, the Iokai Shiatsu (shi: fingers and atsu: pressure) is a relatively recent Japanese technique. Its sources, however, go very far back. Tuina, a traditional Chinese body technique dating back to about 2700 BC, is considered the mother of Shiatsu. This is why the principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Yin and Yang, the study of the 5 elements and the acupuncture points remain closely linked to Shiatsu. Through his pragmatic research, Masunaga Senseï codified the Shiatsu practice and developed a therapeutic approach that became recognised in Japan, followed by the West and the East.
Shiatsu is traditionally practiced on the floor and fully dressed. It involves exerting pressure with the fingers, palms, forearms, elbows and knees on the energetic meridians of the body, as well as on the main points (tsubos). The meridians are the subtle paths for the circulation of vital energy (the Ki, in Japanese) and form a link between the surface of the body and the deep organs. Shiatsu also includes a wide variety of gentle mobilizations of the body joints.
Iokai Shiatsu is an art that is distinguished from a simple manual technique because it engages the psychic and physical wholeness (spirit-body) of the practitioner and the recipient. The quality of this communication is one of the essential points of Iokai Shiatsu in which the term “touching life” lies.
Bab Zouina works closely with Sasaki Senseï, head of the European Iokai Shiatsu Association who was sent to Europe in the eighties by his master, Masunaga Senseï, to spread the Shiatsu practice and its traditional teaching.
Kata & meridians
He is the founder of Iokai Meridian Shiatsu in Europe and the president of the Association for Iokai Shiatsu Europe (AISE). After his travels to India and China in order to develop a deep understanding of Eastern spiritual thinking, he worked for a long time at the Iokai Center in Tokyo. He assisted Masunaga Senseï in his practical and theoretical teaching of shiatsu. In 1981 Sasaki Senseï arrived in Europe to teach Iokai Shiatsu and continue his research on the spirit and the knowledge of traditional oriental medicine through shiatsu. Sasaki Senseï has trained practitioners and teachers in several European countries for more than 35 years.