Updated: Aug 14
Kenbiki: Tendon Therapy
Kenbiki is Japanese method of manual therapy that focuses on adjusting the tendons of the body. When we incur injuries, and sometimes with chronic tension in the body, tendons can become dislodged from their groove, or have a hard time moving smoothly through it's channel due to the excessive tension in the associated muscles.
Sometimes treating the muscle and mobilizing the joint with Shiatsu is enough to allow the tendon to return to its natural position, but when this is not sufficient, Kenbiki is a precise method of quickly restoring tendon alignment.
How Kenbiki Works
The method aims to improve blood circulation through determining which tendons (ken) are distorted, and then pulling, or plucking (biki) them back into place to correct the distortion. The entire procedure takes only a few minutes, and is meant to yield quick results, not requiring consecutive treatments unless for a chronic problem. It is not a gentle technique, and can be a little bit uncomfortable during the procedure, but the results are worth it.
The History of Kenbiki
Kenbiki is a therapeutic technique that was founded and developed in Japan, sharing roots with Yagyu-Shingan-Ryu Jujutsu. the name Kenbiki translates to "tendon plucking". It was developed as a means to treat injuries resulting from martial arts training, especially muscle and tendon injuries from striking, grappling, or being thrown.
This practice was almost extinct until Akinobu Oguchi sensei inherited the practice from his master and worked very hard in Japan to revive the art passed down to him. Oguchi founded an international organization headed in Japan called the Kinseiryuhou through which he teaches and develops Koshiki Kenbiki, applying modern findings to help adapt the profound practice to our day and age.
Integrating Kenbiki in our Treatment
Kenbiki is an excellent compliment to Shiatsu and Sotai, and vice versa. Shiatsu and Sotai can help relieve the related tension in the body, which can make the Kenbiki maneuvers more comfortable and effective. It is not a modality that is used in every treatment, but when it is appropriate, it can make a significant difference.