What is the difference between Ashiatsu and Cai Bei?
Although both require stepping on the back there are some key differences between Ashiatsu and Cai Bei.
Shiatsu originated in Japan and the Japanese were using walking on the back as part of this massage. The reason was that certain individuals needed points that correspond to certain physical issues to be stimulated. As part of the massage the therapist may need the use of their entire body weight to stimulate it at the right pressure.
Cai Bei is a massage that originated out of Hong Kong. The technique involves a deep, slow pressing motion which allows all the muscle tissue and nerves to reconnect to the lymphatic system simultaneously.
In cases where people have deep muscle tension their nerves and muscle tissue are intertwined very closely together. In traditional therapeutic massage the individual muscle strands which are tight are stimulated in a directional movement, either trenching, cross hatching or pressing and rubbing motions.
Rather than targeting the individual tissue the therapist works on the whole group of muscles. The Cai Bei massage allows the body to use its own lymphatic system to create pathways for eliminating toxins as well as feed the cells nutrients, allowing for deep tissue blood circulation and instant regeneration of stiff, non-functioning muscle tissue.
In order to do this the therapist uses two motions, a pressing and release motion, and a pushing motion.