Is Ashiatsu the same as Barefoot Massage?

Is Ashiatsu the same as Barefoot Massage? What is the difference between a Barefoot Massage and a Foot Massage?

WOW! So many questions, and we get them often from our clients as well as from massage therapists. I’m sure you’ve either asked, or have been asked these questions, too. So lets break it down!

Barefoot Massage is a growing specialty in the massage therapy industry where the massage professional utilizes their FEET as tools to give the massage rather than hands. A foot massage is where the clients feet are being massaged through techniques such as Reflexology, Acupressure, Thai Foot Massage, or a general foot rub – like what you may receive from a Nail Technician during a pedicure. A Bear Foot massage is another thing entirely, ha!


Pure Pro for learning barefoot massage

We at Center for Barefoot Massage are pleased to be partnered with Dianna of Pure Pro. Their deep tissue massage cream is like summer butter, all squishy and melty.

There’s enough glide so you don’t inadvertently wax your client’s back but not too much that you can’t learn myofascial barefoot massage.

Why use cream at all if we’re doing myofascial ashiatsu (AKA FasciAshi)? Check out our post here.

Give weight, then wait again.

“Give it weight, then wait” to impact the fascia (but really, the nervous system) is a pretty heavy theory that we’ve found to be important to our FasciAshi technique. Addressing the deep fascial bands, navigating the contours of muscle and bone, and applying a great amount of pressure directly to specific tissues creates a form of myofascial release that your hands only WISH they could achieve with such consistency and accuracy. The broad pressure from a Barefoot Massage is a no brainer for deep bodywork. Moving slower, OR NOT AT ALL, helps you get to that “deeper than deep tissue” feeling so many clients are looking for.

Give weight, then wait.

2017 has been a big year for barefoot massage – a lot of changes have hit the scene, all to the benefit of the massage therapy profession, and ultimately, the public! We dropped a lot of knowledge this year when we released the 1st wave of FasciAshi classes, and we can’t wait for the heavy deep myofascial ashiatsu massage training we’ll be footing out in 2018! In light of this, I thought today, the last day of the year, would be a great day to get down with ‘Part 1’ of this weighted blog post… Give weight, then wait. Enjoy! ~Jeni.

Stretching those hip flexors

Any ashiatsu therapist who loves to do seated work will tell you that you need to make sure you stretch your hip flexors. I personally often can spend 20-30  minutes doing seated work during a 90 minute session (depending on the client’s needs.)

You need to make sure you keep your hip flexors loose in order to do this or you’ll end up walking like Quasimodo.

This move is like your typical runner’s stretch, but it has an added component: the side stretch.

Unboxing the Earthlite table cover

There was a big discussion recently on a Facebook massage group that I’m in, and it was about the sanitation of massage tables. Some people really think we need to be a little more operating room ready and make sure our tables are completely sanitized prior to replacing our linens.

One massage therapist went so far as to say that if she’s getting a massage, she will look underneath the sheets to see if there is a sanitize-able (I think I made up that word) protector under the fitted sheet. If not, she will walk out the door.

I did go to school a long time ago (graduated 19 years ago), and we never discussed anything like this, at least to the best of my knowledge. We did talk about wiping off the tables and of course using clean linens for each client!

At the time, I had been interested in sports massage, so I bought a waterproof table cover. But the material felt like an outdoor tarp. And it was boxy. There is no way you could put sheets on top of it.

Cozy fleece pads can be washed, but it’s unlikely that they are typically changed between clients. My Earthlite deluxe heating pad has the wires inside the fleece, so it can’t be washed. It can only be spot cleaned. (We can get a discount for therapists-email us at

So I did a little research and came across the Earthlite professional table cover. 

Free one day class drawing

If you’re reading this on December 15, you still have time to enter to win our FREE one day of class drawing! We’ll choose the winner tomorrow, December 16, 2017.

Click here to enter!

You just need to be a massage therapist in order to redeem your one day of free class, and it’s not transferable. So don’t enter your Grandma’s email hoping she’ll win and give it to you. 😉

Take a one day of our massage continuing ed classes, and it’s free. (This would apply to our Converge class, and you need to be a barefoot therapist to take the class.)

Enrolling in a 2-day class (ROM, Intermediate, or Advanced) means you’ll only have to pay for 1 day. And that means if you win and discover the art of barefoot FasciAshi massage, our 3-day Fundamentals, class, you pay for just 2 days.

It’s a saving of $224! Woot woot!

Which class will you take if you win?

Fine print: there is no cash value, and it's still not transferable to anyone else. You simply don't pay for one day of our classes if you win.

Know a massage therapist who’s ready to save his / her career and body? Pass them this info, but remember that it needs to be tonight because we are doing the drawing on SATURDAY, DECEMBER 16, 2017!


Tuesday Toesday – using a heating pad to warm feet

This time of the year, many of us are struggling with warm hands and feet when we do our barefoot massage. In fact, I often have a problem in the summertime too when the air conditioning is cranking. Today, we’ve got a cheapo heating pad to the rescue.

Firstly, the directions tell you not to lie on the heating pad, but that’s because the manufacturers don’t want you to fall asleep on one and burn yourself. I’ve had an unlucky client who lost her match with the heating pad this way (at home).

Standing on it is ok because you’re really on there for a short while. Plus, you’re awake. And you can tell if it gets too hot. By that time, you have been happily massaging with those hot feet.

What our barefoot team is thankful for…

Since it’s Thanksgiving, it seems apropos to share with everyone out there what we’re thankful for. While lives and business can be a challenge and a lot of work sometimes, our instructor team has a few people in our lives we’d like to give a shout out to the people we’re thankful for.

Firstly, we’d like to say a big fat thanks to all of our students and those who believe in us and our work. Without you, we wouldn’t be where we are.

A big thanks goes out to Dianna from Pure Pro and to Allissa and Michael from Massage Business Blueprint!

And now, personal thanks from our instructors:

Eliminate massage sheet squish

We see it all the time when massage therapists are learning barefoot massage in class. They step on each side of the client’s body by the hips. Invariably the sheet pushes the client’s bum down towards the massage table.

It feels just plain weird. And annoying too. Plus, it makes your client aware that you are walking on the table.

They KNOW you are, but they don’t need to FEEL that you are.