What is Reiki?
Reiki is a non-invasive, complementary and alternative healing practice which promotes overall health and wellbeing. Originating in Japan, the word “Reiki” is derived from two Japanese words: rei, meaning “spirit” and ki, meaning “life energy.” Many ailments stem from the energy of our bodies being out of balance due to emotional issues, injury or trauma. When our energy is out of balance, the result is often illness, pain or stress. A Reiki practitioner facilitates the flow of energy to the client, rebalancing the ki and allowing the person (or animal) to facilitate his/her own healing response.
What is reiki used to treat?
Much research has been conducted regarding the efficacy of Reiki as part of the healing process. The National Institute for Health (NIH)’s National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine has conducted research, finding that Reiki is associated with:
- reduced pain,
- improved immune indictors,
- decreased heart rate,
- decreased fatigue,
- improved blood pressure,
- reduced anxiety, and increased well-being.
What to Expect from a Reiki Session
A session is usually 60 minutes long. A discussion will take place during an initial session with the Reiki Practitioner. They will describe the session to the client, give the client an opportunity to discuss any particular problems or issues they are experiencing and ask them what they are hoping to achieve from their session. For the actual session, the client will rest comfortably on a massage table on their back with their shoes removed.
Unlike massage therapy, no articles of clothing are removed and a client is always fully clothed; loose, comfortable clothing is suggested. A session can either be hands-on, where a Practitioner will apply a light touch during the session, or hands-off where they will hold their hands slightly above your body. If a client prefers not to be touched they can indicate this to the practitioner before they begin.
The session will then proceed with the Reiki Practitioner moving through specific standard Reiki hand positions beginning at the person’s head or feet. A recipient of Reiki might feel a warming sensation or a tingling during the session or nothing at all but sheer relaxation. The session should be very pleasant, relaxing and invigorating.