Six Stretches for Natural Mobility
Updated: Dec 15, 2019
Meridian Stretching is an approach to self-healing developed by the late, revolutionary Shiatsu therapist, Shizuto Masunaga. It is a profound system that builds upon the fundamental exercises commonly shared among many ancient Japanese medical practices, as well as martial arts. Masunaga-Sensei observed a relationship between these stretches and each Meridian in the body, and explored and more movements according to his deep understanding of the flow of energy in the body. The result is a Yoga-like system, with a vast array of movements and stretches to be practiced with the intention of using them to restore balance and circulation in the body, as well as a way to experience the circulation of energy through the meridians first-hand.
In my opinion, people shouldn't believe anything they haven't personally experienced, and Meridian Stretching presents the opportunity to feel Ki energy and meridians, and demystify it for yourself.
This set of six fundamental stretches circulates energy through the twelve master meridians, and allow you to use your breathing and relaxation to release stagnation throughout the entire body. This is the routine I recommend people start to familiarize themselves with before learning more. Some of these positions will feel easy for you, others impossible. You can start with the beginner version of the stretches that are too strenuous for you, and progress to the full version.
Full Meridian Stretching Sequence - Beginner Variations
The meridian stretching basic sequence should be practiced in this order. As well as a breakdown of each stretch individually later in the article, here is a follow-along guide to go through the sequence on your own.