Friday, February 17, 2012

Shiatsu - Gesundheit!

I got nekkid again today, meaning I made my second trip to the Olympic Spa in Korea Town. My friend Stacia had given me a gift certificate and I decided today, halfway through my time off from the office and my crazed race towards a writing deadline, would be the perfect time to use it.

I did the same ritual as last time: dunk in hot tub, cool, steam/sauna, cool, rest, repeat. Except this time, instead of one of their incredible scrubs, I opted for a shiatsu massage. I'd never had one before, being a Swedish massage kind of gal, but shiatsu is supposed to be excellent for unblocking energy and improving the immune system. In shiatsu, the masseuse works the meridians in the body with pressure. It's like acupuncture, but without the needles.


When Lisa first started on me, there was a lot of pain and I wondered how in the world I was going to get through 50 minutes of this torture. There didn't seem to be a spot that didn't ache to her touch. She apologized, saying I was very tight. It's true. Other masseuses have also commented on how tight my neck, shoulders and back are. That's where I carry my stress and my hours at the computer.

But I didn't give up and neither did Lisa. That tiny woman elbowed, squeezed, kneed and kneaded her way over every part of my body. There were numerous cracks and pops as tight muscles gave way and things fell into place. Although, I was a bit taken back when she got up on the table and straddled me to give my back a good work out. But even more surprised when, after giving my legs and feet a thorough beating, she climbed up on the table again. This time she kneeled on the back of my thighs and worked them with her knees while her strong hands attacked my back yet again.

The last time someone was on top of me like that, it was a guy and he'd bought me a few dinners.

She also pulled my arms over my head and yanked. She yanked my legs, too. Kneaded my scalp like a lump of dough and rotated my feet and hands, fingers and toes. She was the master and I was at her mercy.

But as time went on the aches and pains diminished and when Lisa revisited areas that were painful before, they were no longer.

After the massage, I dunked again in the hot tubs, showered and headed home.

But here's the thing... on the way home I stopped at the grocery store. Usually, after I spend more than a few minutes driving, my legs ache and are stiff when I get out of the car. Halfway across the parking lot from the car to the store, it hit me that neither of my legs were stiff and achy. In fact, they both felt as if they'd lost 50 lbs. I was almost bouncing as I walked. My neck, shoulders and back were also loose and comfy.

I definitely think there's another shiatsu beating in my future because, frankly, it hurt so good!


gregkshipman said...

Way to go, Sue Ann. Remember, if at first there's no good knead, try, try again. That's what I always say (actually this is the first time I've said it... but who's counting?)

Thanks for the 'read'... I'd put Shiatsu Massage on my bucket list but I don't got a bucket and my last list had 'doughnuts', 'bread', catfish filets and green tea on it (and I misspelled doughnuts... using a two inch pencil can be a distraction)

And, by the way, the last time someone climbed on my back it was in a pick-up game of basketball, and you can bet my third grade teacher's well used yard-stick,I'da traded that fool in for the right woman post haste... (And that would make my bucket list... if I had one!)

lolitalamb said...

That spa sounds amazing. I want to go to Los Angeles just to visit the spa!

Anton said...

Incredible feeling, that shiatsu is. Actually, I'm in need of one right now. Maybe one of these weekends before the month ends. I know that feeling of lightness-- as if you're a sponge that has been squeezed dry of its toxins. It's awesome you felt that too!

Anton Houskeeper