Hara in the Japanese language stands for the abdominal region. It’s a word frequently used in both Japanese Traditional Medicine and in the Japanese Martial Arts, and the Hara is considered a very important physical, psychological, and energetic area of the body.
According to traditional Japanese Medicine concepts, the Hara is the location where you’ll find the Lower Dantian (also written Dan Tien, Tantien or Tan Tien). This Dantian, located just below the navel, is thought to process and develop so-called life-elixir by refining Jing Essence into Ki Life Energy (Qi, Prana, Lom Pran). The lower Dantian is also considered the foundation of standing, breathing, and body awareness and it’s believed to aid control of thoughts and emotions.
Japanese Abdominal Hara Massage, in Japan called Ampuku, is a therapeutic abdominal internal organs massage with the aim of promoting healthy internal organs, balancing and healing the digestive and gastrointestinal system, and healing or alleviating genital and reproductive disorders.
Apart from the benefits mentioned above, Japanese Ampuku Massage is thought to be beneficial for back and shoulder pains, bladder problems, liver problems, detoxification, insomnia, fatigue, better blood circulation, more flexibility and range of motion, and longevity.
The massage generally takes about an hour and can be given with the receiver being fully clothed or with the abdominal area uncovered. It can be given as a stand-alone massage treatment or as part of a Shiatsu Massage.