Massage & Bodywork


Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 98 of 117

How can you apply specific pressure without it seeming sharp? How can you lean into your techniques and stand up without overusing your back muscles? I'd like you to try a technique borrowed from shiatsu massage: the mother hand. Shiatsu practitioners tend to use a two-handed strategy—one hand applies pressure to specific points, while the other hand hangs back and gives comfort by being broad and constant. This "mother hand" gives gentle context to the sharper application of pressure moving up the spine or leg, and it lends a sense of stability to both client and therapist. On a psychological level, using a mother hand technique allows the client to tolerate (and enjoy) contact that might otherwise be too direct or stimulating. On a neurological level, it provides competing input that can inhibit nociception. In other words, by being both direct and broad at the same time, you can change the entire massage experience with the use of this second hand. 96 m a s s a g e & b o d y w o r k j a n u a r y / f e b r u a r y 2 0 1 9 technique THE MASSAGE SLOTH The Mother Hand A Touch of Kindness By Ian Harvey

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of Massage & Bodywork - JANUARY | FEBRUARY 2019