Aquatic Shiatsu – Fire & Water I, II and III

(50 hours each) fulfills the 100 hour Shiatsu requirement to become a WATSU® practitioner.  These courses can also be chosen as the 50 hour elective.

Fire and Water offers a clear, coherent, and most importantly, applicable base of knowledge to participants. Whether you are new to Watsu, and/or bodywork, or have been practicing for years, the information taught is invaluable. With Minakshi’s grace and skill in the water, combined with Shinzo’s fire and profound knowledge of Shiatsu, this course is sure to be enlightening, enlivening, and enriching beyond measure.

These courses are taught half on land, half in the water. On land, students are introduced to concepts of oriental Shiatsu. They learn ways of using meridians and points that are only available in the water.


During Fire and Water I students will:

  • learn how to touch and enjoy being in the water, while practicing gentle joint mobilizations, stretching & applying pressure
  • learn the locations of the meridians
  • palpate key points along the meridians including source points
  • learn one back point for each meridian
  • practice (in water) combining back and key points with hara massage, for each meridian
  • learn positions in which the meridian stretches can be practiced along with the points learned
  • educate their clients by showing simple stretches and points
  • experience the many benefits of Shiatsu, including a balanced flow of energy, deep relaxation and an overall feeling of well-being. Many experience pain relief.

FW2During Fire and Water II students will further their understanding of concepts of oriental Shiatsu by:

  • reviewing & expanding their understanding of the material in Fire and Water I
  • having a basic understanding of “Five Element Theory”
  • learning “front” points in relation to the five elements
  • studying the daily rhythms of the “Ki” cycling through the meridians
  • learning to diagnose their own “kyo” and “jitsu” and apply this personal understanding to a general understanding of the theory
  • applying their knowledge of “kyo” and “jitsu” to the hara (on land & in the water) for a deeper understanding of deficiency & excess
  • learning the location of the five elements in the hara and the front of the body and how to connect with them
  • learning indications for back points based on understanding sense organs, etc. & their relationship to the five elements
  • recommending “homework” for their clients based on five element theory

FW3During Fire and Water III students will apply their understanding of concepts of oriental Shiatsu, including:

  • Experience empowering ourselves by coming into resonance with our heart & breath and expressing our dreams.
  • Understand & practice neck care in relation to its connection with the Triple Warmer, Hara, Back “Yu” Points and Front “Alarm Points”, 12 Meridians of Arms & Legs, 2 Central Meridians
  • *Experience the synthesis of connecting all the above elements together with the head across the neck.
  • Understand the 6 meridian flow in the neck.
  • Understand the 5 Elements energetic theory.
  • Understand the 5 Element assessment questions and practice with each other.

First Fire and Water Group of students with Minakshi and Shinzo

Mary, Shinzo, Minakshi, Dan, Arjana, Monica, Paul and Cathrin

The recommended pre-requisite for Fire and Water I is WATSU® Basics (or WATSU I®).  However, several students have sucessfully take this course without the pre-requisite, so it is no longer required.  The pre-requisite for Fire and Water II was Fire and Water I. We have re-designed this class, so that it is now an entry level class as well. Yes, this means that you can even take Fire and Water II before Fire and Water I. If you have no previous bodywork experience Shiatsu and Watsu are recommended.

Would you like to sense where & how blocked energy could be released in yourself & others?

In “Aquatic Shiatsu” we learn to develop rapport while studying Oriental philosophy. In studying the Five Element Theory we understand that everyone has some of each of the elements. We learn to support balance in another without judging. Instead of considering what the other’s problem is, we learn what their passion is, what their love is. In order to support another, we need to understand ourselves and be clear. When we are in balance ourselves, we can be with another without imposing judgment. We vibrate with our own elemental nature..wood, fire, earth, metal, water. Then we can vibrate with another’s nature and support their wellness and health. In studying the Five Elements we learn to explore and respect our own essential essence. Then we can understand our partner’s poetry (essence) and learn to dance with it. In this way we create a “free style” in which we create our own poetry, dancing with the elements..based on Oriental theory.

In “Aquatic Shiatsu” (Fire and Water II) we begin with learning assessment questions based on the “Five Elements Theory”. This helps us understand clients and gain their trust. We expand our understanding of the benefits of the meridians and points learned in Fire and Water I. We experience, measure and document “Kyo” (deficiency) and “Jitsu” (excess) in relationship to the beginning and ending points of meridians, then apply what we have learned to understanding the condition of the hara. We learn indications for “back/yu” and “front/alarm” points based on understanding sense organs, etc, their relationship to the 5 elements, and understanding “chronic” and “acute” conditions. We practice applying what we have learned while giving sessions on land and in water. We finish each practice session with sharing our understanding with our client (another student) inspiring them to share responsibility for their own healing

Fire and Water 3 focuses on how to support, massage, and balance the flow of energy/ies specifically through the neck both on land and in the water. Fire and Water I & II introduced the location, points, and benefits of the twelve meridians of the arms and legs, along with the energetic theory of the Five Elements, all of which are expanded and studied deeper in Fire & Water 3. The heart connection is the place where we are empowered to convert negative energy into positive, the breath supports us in this transformation, and the hara provides holds our energetic reservoir. As honest and truthful expression of self is a vital component of healing, withheld or uncomfortable communication creates significant tension in the neck region and throughout the body. The 6 yin meridians connected with the heart area, and the 6 yang meridians with the head, expressing our mind-body connection.

Read testimonials about Fire & Water classes

Read a beautiful tribute by Shinzo Fujimaki called The Story of Minakshi