Chicago Watsu
~ Home
~ Origin of Watsu
~ Articles on Watsu

~ Medical/Wellness

~ Receive Watsu
~ Learn Watsu
~ What is Waterdance?
~ Contact Practitioner

During a Watsu Session

During a Watsu session you may experience a state of deep relaxation and meditation while you are supported at the occiput of your neck and the sacrum of your lower back. Your ears are just below the waters surface, and the only sound that you hear is the beating of your heart and the inhalation/exhalation of your own breath. As the therapist connects with your breath you are then moved through a series of rocking and rotational movements while the emphasis is placed on stretching the chakras and meridians that correspond to points in Shiatsu, releasing blocked energy. Being submerged in warm water promotes circulation, while unloading weight-bearing joints from the effects of gravity. In addition, coupling Zen Shiatsu techniques and the forgiving medium of water, have had profound effects on healing and wellness over traditional land based manual therapy practices.

What are the Benefits of Watsu?

  • Reduced stress
  • Increased range of motion
  • Reduced anxiety
  • Increased digestion
  • Decreased muscle guarding
  • Increased engagement in life skills
  • Decreased pain/holding patterns
  • Increased sleep pattern
  • Decreased hypertonicity
  • Increased flexibility
  • Decreased muscle tightness
  • Increased joint mobility
  • Release/discovery of emotions
  • Increased strength
  • Improved breathing pattern
  • Increased immune system response

What Populations Can Benefit from Watsu?

  • Acute/Sub Acute/Chronic Pain
  • Cerebral Vascular Accident
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Spinal Cord Injury
  • Arthritis
  • Lower Back Pain
  • Neuromuscular Disorders
  • Central Nervous System Disorders
  • Sleep Disorders
  • Soft Tissue Dysfunction
  • Anxiety Disorders
  • Cerebral Palsy
  • Orthopedic Conditions
  • Autism
  • Cancer
  • General Wellness

Watsu Can Interrupt the Pain Cycle

Many people that experience pain will avoid physical activity to prevent an increase in pain. Lack of activity can lead a person into a cycle of pain that will increase muscle tightness, limit range of motion and their ability to experience normal sleep patterns. As time goes on someone living with chronic pain can begin to experience muscle spasms/guarding, emotional stress and habitual holding patterns. In Watsu there is a decrease in sympathetic nervous system activation due to the benefits of muscle relaxation, neutral warmth of warm water, increase in hydrostatic pressure and buoyancy. Pain and discomfort is lessened allowing the body to move beyond those limitations that fear of pain imposes. As a result the pain cycle can be interrupted.

You can learn more about Watsu for people with special needs on the Worldwide Aquatic Bodywork Association (WABA) website.

©2008 Chicago Watsu