Eliminating Dry Heels and Feet

Soon it will be winter in Iowa.  This means my clients will begin to mention their dry skin, and I will  go through more massage cream because of their moisture-deprived skin. Winter is also synonymous with paying extra attention to my feet and heels as the humidity in my house drops to desert levels. I also know there are others new to ashiatsu, or considering training ,  who want to work at getting their feet ready or remedy dry feet this time of hears. The good news is that their is usually quite a few things you can do to eliminate and prevent dry (or even cracked) heels and feet.

If you search “dry heels” on Google, you will likely encounter multiple and more advice than you would ever want.  There is plenty of advice from Oprah, Podiatrists, and Nail Technicians.

Here is a little advice from me about a few things you need (and need to do), a few things you don’t to maintain soft feet for work: [Read more…]

Deducting Pedicures for Ashiatsu?

Are pedicures “necessary and ordinary” for our job, or are they a “personal expense”? Is this something you should be able to deduct?  Or, is this and the daily visit with your pumice stone and aloe socks just part of your normal, personal upkeep? [Read more…]

Balance Exercises for Ashiatsu Practitioners

I remember the first time I stepped up onto my table. I had not installed my bars yet, but I wanted to know what I was going to feel like to be up there. As I looked down, and walked around my table, I was thankful for my prior gymnastics training and my limited yoga practice. I was so excited to get my bars installed! I could hardly wait.

At that moment, I could tell working on improving my balance even more would be essential for me to be a confident and skillful ashiatsu practitioners. And it was something I wanted to work on. [Read more…]

Arm Strength and Ashiatsu

What kind of arm strength is needed for an ashiatsu practitioner?

The power and pressure during an ashiatsu sessions is a gift from the fantastic laws of gravity, plus some core and leg/hip strength.

The arms are used mainly to maintain balance during the massage(by using the overhead bars). The bars are a guide and valuable tool during the massage, but rarely are used to hold the therapists whole body weight during the massage (especially for beginners).  Arms, shoulders, and hands should be relaxed during the massage, but ready to grab that bar, or grasp it a little tighter,  quickly when extra balance is needed.  Even though the bars are built hold more than the practitioners weight, a practitioner does not hang from the bars.

So, why arm exercises today?

Two reasons… [Read more…]

Hip and Upper Leg Stretching / Flow

Yesterday I promised upper leg and hip stretches for ashiatsu practitioners. Since we did Active Isolated Stretching (AIS) yesterday, today I have a few yoga sequences/flows. I mentioned that upper leg and hip soreness is the most common complaint I hear of from new ashiatsu practitioners. Learning to have greater control your legs and foot movements takes time and practice, but is essential in becoming a great barefoot therapist. I recommend starting some type of leg/hip strengthing and stretching before and after training.

The below videos are about 20 minutes long (total) and are a great place to start.
[Read more…]

Lower Leg and Foot Stretches (AIS)

Yesterday I decided I would venture out and try my first barefoot run. It went great! I started with a mile and then walked to cool down. The good news is that my feet feel great. The bad news is that I feel like my calves are going to explode.

I found this Active Isolated Stretching (AIS) protocol on YouTube. It is for the lower leg and foot. It is very thorough and just what I needed today. I know how many people can be sore when they start out as ashiatsu practitioners. Typically, upper leg and hip soreness is common when learning to use those upper legs in a new way (stabilization!). I will post a stretching video on that next. But today is lower leg stretching. This would be a great warm up before work or at the end of a long day for new and experienced practitioners

Just because ashiatsu uses gravity more that other methods, does not mean that self care and stretching is any less important!

Have fun!

Ashiatsu Massage Board on Pinterest

Here is my Pinterest board for ashiatsu and barefoot fun: Ashiatsu on Pinterest

I will add more of my favorite ashiatsu products, pictures, quotes, and tips for foot/nail care.


Photo: © Cristina | Dreamstime.com