Tapping into Spring: the energy of growth
1 March 2019
“The three months of the spring season bring about the revitalisation of all things in nature. It is the time of birth. (…) It is advisable to retire early.
Arise early also and go walking in order to absorb the fresh, invigorating energy’’. Nei Jing (Ni, 1995)
After the hibernation of nature in Winter, Spring represents the miracle of growth and new beginnings. Daylight lasts longer, the sun is warmer, new shoots and fresh leaves appear and flowers dot the gardens, parks and meadows. Many people find springtime invigorating, a time to enjoy being outdoors, stay active for longer during the day and make plans for the months ahead with renewed determination to achieve their goals.
When we feel out of balance, the change of seasons can intensify our complaints or throw us out of balance, while we try to adapt to and assimilate the new energies in nature. Shiatsu is a supportive treatment which can bring your Qi (pronounced 'chee' - energy flow) back into balance and quickly shift symptoms and complaints.
Traditional Chinese medicine and the Five Elements
In traditional Chinese theory, the Five Elements, or Five Phases, represent essential qualities in nature, each with its unique movement and quality of Qi, which also reflect the different qualities of the seasons.
Spring is governed by the energy of the Wood Element. Like trees making strong roots and growing tall and wide, Wood energy supports people to develop, be creative and reach their full creative potential. When out of balance, many symptoms can appear on the physical, emotional and spiritual aspects of our being.
Flexible muscles and easy joints
Stiffness and pain can increase in Spring, and is often worse first thing in the morning, on waking. Regular stretching will benefit the ligaments and tendons and make movement easier. Your shiatsu treatment can incorporate ‘passive’ stretches to open up and mobilise parts of the body, encouraging Qi flow while supporting weaker areas. Acupressure on traditional acupuncture points can be used for pain relief. I can also recommend simple stretches that you can do at home. They will help Qi flow through the meridians, so tendons will become more flexible and movement smoother and easier.
Balancing the emotions
Sudden outbursts of anger and ongoing irritability or frustration can be disturbing both for ourselves and those around us. Women may find these feelings particularly strong pre-menstrually, if the Wood element is out of balance.
When such emotions rise suddenly within us they can make us feel out of control and often complicate relationships. On the other hand, many people repress these emotions. The strong energy behind them, when repressed, can cause other symptoms, such as headaches, or lead to depression.
Shiatsu can be a safe way to balance the emotions, with its gentle, calming effect. Women may find regular treatments particularly beneficial for pre-menstrual tension. Stress and tension eases off and you will feel calmer and more relaxed.
A time for moving forward
Organising, planning and taking timely action enable us to shape our life path. We can harness the energy of Spring to move forward with our life plans, in a time when we are likely to feel more optimistic and energised. Difficulties in initiating change, choosing a course of action and motivating ourselves, can create a snowball of negative consequences affecting all areas of life. Equally, being too rigid and inflexible in our attitudes and beliefs will diminish our ability to adapt to change and to respond creatively to life’s challenges.
Shiatsu can provide a relaxing space to let go of concerns and pressures, to stop and focus on the needs of the moment. People often talk about feeling spacious after the treatment, or more ‘open’. It is often our ability to be available and present in the moment that gives us more clarity about our overall future direction and enables us to initiate change. By developing the quality of ‘being-ness’ our ‘doing’ becomes more effective and creative. Moving on to new things becomes effortless and change is welcome.
If you want to discover what shiatsu can do for you, please get in touch.
Disclaimer: The information in this blog is not intended to replace medical advice. If you are unwell you should consult a qualified medical professional.