I've experienced back pain for a number of years, since being diagnosed with quite severe scoliosis when I was 15, and I've seen Alice for shiatsu on and off for a year or so. Her treatments always leave me feeling much more relaxed and certainly in less pain. I highly recommend shiatsu with Alice for anyone who needs relief from any form of physical tension.
EM, 24, Press & Communications, 2014
I've had lots of different types of massage from a variety of masseurs that I have enjoyed and found beneficial. Alice's shiatsu is the best massage treatment I've had. I love the approach of targeting specific areas of the body and applying different types of pressure. After the sessions I feel invigorated, my mind was clear and my body relaxed, and I went back to work with a renewed purpose.
OH, 27, Theatre Maker, 2013
When lucky enough to receive Shiatsu treatment from Alice, the experience is consistently professional, truly relaxing and a fascinating learning experience. Any ailments - prominent or under the surface - are sensitively discussed and after each session, I feel reformed, rejuvenated and cared for.
MJ, 27, Teaching Assistant, 2013
I did not know a lot about Shiatsu before meeting Alice. I had previously had acupuncture as therapy, but at the time I was in a really bad place in myself and in my life in general following traumas of sexual and emotional abuse. I realised that the needles was too much for me at that point in my healing process, and searched for something else.
At the time of my first Shiatsu appointment, I did feel very disconnected both to myself and the outside world. Alice was very gentle, she was compassionate and a good listener. She made it clear that I had nothing to feel embarrassed or ashamed for in her presence. I felt that I could be myself wholly and fully; be accepted and be able to speak freely.
During the session, Alice explained every step and move she was taking at the beginning of the session. I think she noticed my nervousness of relaxing, keeping my eyes shut and being touched by another human being. After some time, I started to relax. She did the whole session keep one hand on me so it was very easy to know and feel where she was without me needing to open my eyes, something which was very calming.
Even though Shiatsu is a physical treatment with use of touching and stretching the limbs, back, tummy, head and neck, my experience was highly emotional. I could feel the treatment brought me in touch with the emotions that was buried inside of the physical pains I had in my back and in my feet, and I could feel it somehow strengthened my emotional boundaries. I know that the Shiatsu and Alice was a large part of me starting my healing process.
I love Shiatsu. I consider it my lazy woman's yoga - almost like having a yoga session done to me. I had my first shiatsu treatment over fifteen years ago. I didn't know anything about the meridians nor did I care - All I knew was that I came out of my sessions floating on air. Now, I understand much more how it works, how the practitioner can diagnose and then, with the utmost respect, work with the meridians and gentle hands to effect whatever healing I need. It's wonderful.
SW, 62, carer 2013
Having never experienced shiatsu before, I was curious to see what was involved. Following two ACL reconstructions on my knee and keen to start sport again, I was open to try anything and therefore booked a couple of sessions with Alice. I was impressed with her pre-examination questions, including what I want to improve on and what’s currently holding me back. She really took an interest in the background of my needs, not just on the present. I felt very relaxed and comfortable during the whole session and found the whole experience very pleasant. Although I remain fairly sceptical of this kind of alternative approach, I can’t deny that it wasn’t beneficial to my recovery. It gave me confidence to build up my knee strength, so much so that I’m now competing in triathlons and other sports as a result.
G.S, Marketing Coordinator, 2013
I had no pre-conceived ideas as to what shiatsu was when I first embarked on my sessions with Alice. All I knew was that my mind and body needed an escape for just a bit of time each week and Alice’s sessions gave me some release. An added addition was the feeling of calm afterward.
Remaining fully-clothed allowed me to feel still very safe and secure within the session, a security that was appreciated greatly at the time.
I still visit Alice as her sessions are a time now for me to relax and de-stress and allow Alice to do her magic.
JM, Teaching Assistant, 2018
I started having shiatsu with Alice after I was raped. I was referred by Rape Crisis while I was waiting for the court date (a process that took almost 18 months) and experiencing both the fallout from the trauma and the anxiety of preparing for cross-examination. I was constantly anxious, having nightmares, panic attacks and flashbacks and unable to eat because of nausea. I was also very depressed, totally entrenched in self-hatred, and often suicidal. I wasn’t consciously aware of it, but I had cut myself emotionally from the people and the world around me – I was numb and disconnected.
I chose to come to shiatsu a little skeptical and knowing fairly little about it because I thought it might be relaxing and perhaps help with the aches and pains I was experiencing as a result of the stress and trauma. This certainly turned out to be true: I came out of my first few sessions feeling calmer and noticed a significant improvement in my sleep, and my muscle pain improved. The biggest change I have seen, though, is the reconnection to my body. It has been a gradual process, and it is only recently that I have been able to feel fully ‘present’ and comfortable in it, but the shift from constantly trying to escape myself to wanting to come back to my body has been noticeable from the beginning. It also helped me see touch from another person not as something violent but as something compassionate and healing, which was an important step in regaining trust in others.
It was significant for me, too, to do something that was just for me at a time when I felt totally worthless and undeserving. I think that was very empowering. I have also learnt a lot of ways to soothe particular symptoms or physiological responses, which is really helpful in my day to day life and also gives me a sense of ownership of my body in that I can do very practical things to help myself in the short term.
When you are awaiting trial you are not allowed to talk about the details of your assault to anyone, which I think compounds the trauma and makes you feel stuck in your recovery. In sessions, through touch, but also through knowing that I was safe, emotions and memories were often dislodged and released in a way I didn’t really understand, but that made a very powerful difference to me.
The way that shiatsu – and Alice – came into my life was unexpected; I don’t think it would have occurred to me to use it as a part of my recovery, but I am so grateful to have had the chance to. I’ve struggled to put into words the effect it has had on me but I really think it could make a big difference to a lot of people, especially those who have been through any kind of trauma.
I decided to try shiatsu for a long-term pain I have had in my neck and shoulders. I have tried other treatments in the past which have not always been so successful… Alice’s thorough yet gentle approach in our first session instantly made me feel at ease; she clearly listened to what I was hoping to gain from the treatment… For me the benefits of the treatments were instantaneous - the pain in my neck and shoulders eased dramatically and I felt better than I have for several years…. the treatments made me feel relaxed and calm afterwards - it really did feel like my system had been properly ‘balanced’ out.
RAD, 34, Counsellor and Project Leader, 2013