Reiki (pronounced Ray-Key) literally means universal life force energy and is a system of healing that is believed to stimulate the body’s natural ability to heal itself on all levels, whether physical, mental, emotional or spiritual. There is no belief system attached to Reiki, so anyone can receive it. The basis of Reiki is the concept that an energy flow exists in living beings which supports life, known as Qi (pronounced Chi). Tai-chi and Yoga are also based on the flow of this energy in a person. It is believed that if Qi energy is diminished, this can lead to the body becoming out of balance and allowing ill health can arise. Reiki therapists believe that they act as a channel for this energy and have been trained to allow this energy to flow through them, out of their hands and then drawn into the person having the therapy, according to their need. Most people find Reiki deeply relaxing and restorative and some people even drift into a light sleep. Many people find that it gives them a greater strength to cope with both physical and emotional side effects of cancer treatments.
During your first visit, the practitioner will discuss your medical history, symptoms, allergies and any medicines you are taking before giving you a treatment. Reiki is a non-invasive, gentle therapy and neither person has to use any effort or concentration during the process. You should wear comfortable clothing and will remain fully clothed throughout the treatment session. You will sit or lie down and the practitioner gently places their hands on or just above your body in a sequence of positions that cover the whole body, starting at the head and gradually working over the front of the body, finishing at the feet. Each position is held for about 2-5 minutes or until the practitioner feels that the flow of energy has slowed or stopped.
A full treatment usually takes 30-60 minutes and is generally given in a course of three to six treatments according to need.
Reiki is a method of healing which had been lost for centuries until Dr Mikao Usui rediscovered it in Japan in the late 19th/early 20th centuries. It evolved as a result of his research, experience and dedication and is a tradition that is open to any belief system. Reiki is taught by Reiki Master/Teachers, who have trained in the tradition passed on, in person, from Master to student. Students go through a process of initiation/attunement to the Reiki energy. They are then able to treat themselves and others, not only from a personal and emotional perspective, but also as an aid to individual development and spiritual growth.
Reiki may be used safely alongside medical and surgical treatment. There are no contraindications. Although the lack of sufficient research data means that the results are inconclusive, the evidence that does exist supports the use of touch therapies, such as Reiki, in pain relief. Studies involving more experienced practitioners tend to yield greater effects in pain reduction. When surveys were completed by 145 adult cancer patients receiving Reiki at a University Hospital in the US over a 6-month period, participants reported greater improvements for relaxation, anxiety/worry, improved mood and sleep, reduced pain and isolation/loneliness, improved attitude and appetite. Other studies also report improved pain control, improvement in quality of life and reduced fatigue (significant decreases in tiredness in one study) following Reiki treatment.
£40-60 . Some clinics are able to offer an initial package of up to eight free or low cost sessions. If, after these sessions, the clinic is unable to offer you more, they should be able to refer you to individual therapists or centres that offer this service.