Jin Shin is the art of using our hands to harmonise the body’s energy pathways.
Jin Shin originates from innate Eastern wisdom that we have ‘vital life energy’, that flows through the whole body via a number of energy pathways (known as meridians in Traditional Chinese Medicine). Jin Shin acts through the gentle placement of hands (a therapist’s or our own) on energy centres in specific sites along energy pathways.
This allows our energy to flow more freely, helping our mental, emotional and physical health and wellbeing.
Knowledge of these energy pathways and how to unblock them was passed down from generation to generation over hundreds of years by Eastern healers. This led to treatments using hands as well as with needles (acupuncture). In Japan, this hands-on healing method gradually fell into disuse over the centuries and almost completely disappeared, until curiosity about all these ancient arts began to stir again in the 1900s.
In 1912, a young Japanese man named Jiro Murai was able to clear himself of a life-threatening illness using these ancient arts (after doctors had given up all hope). He then devoted the rest of his life to researching and reviving this art. Jin Shin Jyutsu® then travelled from Japan to America in the 1960s, carried as a gift from Murai to the West via his Japanese American student of 20 years, Mary Burmeister. Mary practised and taught Jin Shin Jyutsu widely in America enthusing her students with this “complicatedly simple” art. And in America it has mainly stayed, with a scattering of practitioners and teachers in Europe.
One of my reflexology clients introduced me to Jin Shin Jyutsu (also called The Art of Jin Shin) in 2016 and I quickly became hooked and have attended many self-help courses and a practitioner level course over the past few years to build my knowledge and experience.
Receiving a Jin Shin treatment from a practitioner feels blissful. However it also makes a wonderful self-treatment that is relaxing, replenishing and effective. This is why the current pandemic is the perfect time for me to start sharing this art, so that we can all have some easy and practical skills to help ourselves feel happier and healthier. Whether we have a Jin Shin treatment from a practitioner or work on ourselves the principles are exactly the same. We used our hands as ‘jump leads’ connecting 2 areas of the body which allows the energy to flow. Just as we don’t need to hit our car battery with our jump leads or apply pressure, so it is with our hands, we are just making a connection by touching the body – no pressure, rubbing or massage is required. Jin Shin works over clothing, over blankets and duvet, through gloves and even over casts, so direct skin contact is not required.
You can actually give yourself a treatment whenever you have your hands free! It does not require your full attention (though you can choose to do it in peace and quiet to get into a deep meditative state). So you can hold a finger or an area of the body while watching TV, listening to music or a podcast or even during a dull work meeting!
You can choose to give yourself a treatment:
- At bedtime to help you process and release the day’s events and stresses allowing your mind and body to relax and encouraging a great night’s sleep,
- If you wake up in the night to help you switch off again, relax and fall back asleep
- When you wake up in the morning and before you get out of bed (or switch on your phone) to release joint and muscle tension and to revitalise your whole body ready for the day ahead,
- Whenever you find yourself in a stressful or emotional situation,
- When your body signals it needs a helping hand – messages such as indigestion, bloating, coughing, pain, stiffness …
- Whenever you are watching TV, listening to music,
- When you are in a waiting room, travelling in a car, train or plane (as a passenger!)
- during a medical procedure where you have access to your hand,
We can access each of the body’s energy pathways in a number of different ways, so you always have a choice of how to help a particular area of the body. For each pathway there will be a long, a short and a very quick way to work on it, can be compared to:
- A long email – a series of Jin Shin body holds called a ‘sequence’ or ‘flow’,
- A short text – touching 2 areas of the body, called a ‘hold’,
- An Emoji – holding a finger, thumb or area of the hand.
Each method is effective, so you can choose which one to use, given your environment and current circumstances at the time.
If you would like to find out more about how to use Jin Shin to give yourself a treatment, take a look at my online treatments page.