Foot Arch Release: a shiatsu shin tai instructional video

Foot Arch Release

The Foot Arch Release technique is often covered in the Governing Vessel and Conception Vessel courses.  It is a wonderful technique that we use often in treatments.  It is recommended that you use this instructional video as a supplement to classroom instruction, not a replacement!

This technique can be used on its own, or as a preliminary step to doing work with the hip joints that is presented in the Conception Vessel/Hara class.  It is best to do this technique once there is already some space and motion in the body.  In other words, don't use it as one of the first things you do in a session.

The Foot Arches 

There are three main arch structures in the foot:  two longitudinal arches and one transverse arch.  Due to injury, repetitive compression, energetic imbalances, or organ disharmonies, the joints creating the arches in the feet can become rigid, misaligned, and/or compressed.

foot arches
foot arches

Applying gentle compression along the top of the arch system until the slack in the arches is taken out, and then introducing an impulse at a 45 degree angle towards the heel, helps to readjust, realign, and restore mobility in the complex of joints through this area of the foot.  This can also be helpful for people with 'flat feet.'

The Effect on the Hip Joints

This technique creates a secondary affect in the hip joints.  Energy that tends to become trapped and stagnant in the hip joints is given release through the muscle and ligament chain that connects down through the foot structure.  Creating more space, bouyancy and alignment in the foot arches with the release technique allows this trapped energy to dissipate and disperse.  There will be an immediate improvement in hip joint flexibility after this release.

Another connection....

The ankles are a reflex area for the pelvis.  This also helps explain why freeing up more mobility and alignment in the ankles is reflected in the increased range of motion in the hip joints.