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Written by Sarah Kirton | Updated On February 01, 2023

Zen Shiatsu with Evangelos Z Garbis

Zen Shiatsu with Evangelos Z Garbis

MysticMag has the opportunity to talk with Evangelos Z Garbis from Healing Warrior Zen Shiatsu.

Which parts of your history & background influenced your journey most, bringing you to where you are today?

What a great question! I had for many years been interested in East Asian medicine, but like many other humans, I made excuses as to why I could not courageously jump in head first and enjoy a life that I truly desired to create.
It really all began when my young son came into my home office, grabbed me by my cheeks, looked at me dead in the eyes, and proceeded to tell me that I cared more about my corporate job, and the team that I led, more than I cared about him and his mother.
Soon after that I resigned from the corporate world, and jumped into looking at what a life as a Shiatsu Therapist would look like.
I consider my son my biggest teacher, and I will be forever grateful to him.

The other two major supporters that helped and guided me to where I am today are my wife, Leslie, and my dear friend whom I consider a brother, Gil, a very well-known and respected Acupuncturist in the Nashville area. Without their love and support, I don’t believe that I would have made such a leap of faith.

We as humans tend to stick with what is safe. I am grateful that I was courageous and made the hard right choice versus the easy wrong one. I hope that this message resonates with others that may feel stuck.

The great thing is that we can always make another choice. We are truly never really stuck; we are simply not asking the right questions.

How would you describe the core of Zen Shiatsu to the novices out there?

Zen Shiatsu is a Japanese form of bodywork that helps the body return to homeostasis through physical touch, and profound energy-balancing. Shiatsu directly treats the channels and pathways within the body that are directly connected to our very life essence (Ki energy). We experience this energy in the form of movement, communication, respiration, digestion, thoughts, feelings and spirituality.
When there are energetic, and/or fluid blockages within the channels, this can result in physical, psychological and emotional distress and disease within the body.

When parts of the body are deficient and not pulling their weight, other areas must pick up the slack. This can cause an overall exertion to the rest of the system. The individualized treatment plans within a Zen Shiatsu treatment are meant to energize and balance these deficiencies, thus allowing the symptoms of overactivity to melt away.

A practitioner of Zen Shiatsu contacts the receiver’s body and energy level at an appropriate depth and with great sensitivity. Zen Shiatsu practitioners use both hands. One hand is used to listen, and sound out the responses of the receiver. When the other hand reaches an appropriate depth, an energetic connection passes between the hands of the giver. The receiver’s body tells the giver when the pressure is right. An energetic circuit is created between the hands of the giver, catalyzing change and movement in the body of the receiver.
Full-body stretches are also used to release areas of chronic stagnation and blockage. These stretches amplify and isolate the areas of stagnation.

Zen Shiatsu is appropriate for all ages and body types. It is performed fully clothed, with the receiver usually lying on a futon on the floor. For receivers who have difficulty lying on the floor, the work is easily adapted to a chair. Treatments last one hour. Zen Shiatsu is very effective in conditions where emotional disturbance or stress is an underlying factor, such as, but not limited to:
* Insomnia
* Anxiety and depression
* Muscular tension
* Headaches
* Digestive disturbances
* Menstrual dysfunction
* Low resistance to infection

Zen Shiatsu is also an effective treatment for the musculoskeletal system. It works directly on the tissues involved, stimulating healing and relaxation responses. It is therefore effective in the treatment of:
* Backache
* Synovitis
* Sprains and strains
* Neck and shoulder stiffness
* Joint pain

The localized physical effects of Zen Shiatsu also relieve:
* Sinus congestion
* Retention of fluid in tissues
* Poor circulation

Would you say that you are first and foremost a healer?

I would say that I am an educator that enjoys being a vessel, and who helps his clients and their bodies remember what it feels like to be harmoniously in balance. My mission is to teach each patient about the natural healing powers they hold within.

Is ‘connection’ an integral part of Shiatsu and if so, can you quantify?

Shiatsu is about deep connection that is built on a foundation of safety and trust. Through conversation and connection, a Shiatsu therapist and their clients are able to create a very clear picture of the initial pain point in their lives that has led to their current physical imbalances. We then begin a process of creating personalized treatments that help the body rebalance itself.

How many sessions would you generally recommend to a client, or should the practice ideally be a lifestyle?

Initially, I would recommend between 3-6 sessions, this allows for the client and their bodies to determine if the work that is being done is affecting the body, mind and soul generatively. Having Shiatsu in your life as a lifestyle would contribute greatly, however this is something that must be decided on by the clients.

What other services do you offer?

Another service that I provide is running energy. Running energy, or Energy Running is a simple, non–invasive energy process where the facilitator lightly touches 32 points on the head to release the energy of the thoughts, ideas, attitudes, decisions, and beliefs that you have carried throughout your life. They correspond to specific energy channels. Receiving this process usually leaves you with a sense of peace and spaciousness; and a feeling like there is more possibility open to you.

I also provide cupping, which helps mobilize tissue for increased circulation of blood, fluids and Qi (Energy) to areas of stagnation. This helps alleviate pain, increases range of motion, and an overall benefit to the entire organ network system. It is also considered to be a wonderful aid in detoxification.

Re-birthing breathwork is also another service that I provide. Re-birthing Breathwork, aka Intuitive Energy Breathing or Conscious Energy Breathing, is the ability to breathe energy as well as air. It is the art of learning to breathe from the breath itself. Re-birthing Breathwork is perhaps the most valuable self-healing ability that humans can learn. We cannot have disease and relaxation in the same space at the same time.
Relaxation is the ultimate healer. Every breath induces relaxation. Therefore, breathing is the basic healer. Conscious Energy Breathing is the most natural healing ability of all. This ability involves merging the inhale with the exhale in a gentle relaxed rhythm in an intuitive way that floods the body with Divine Energy.

What advice do you have for those of our readers curious to find out more?

I would highly recommend that your readers review my website,, and feel free to contact me with any questions they may have. It would be my pleasure and my privilege to be able to be a support mechanism towards their healing.

If you would like to find out more about Evangelos Garbis, visit or follow on or

About the author
Sarah is a keen and passionate advocate of the spiritual and healing components within the mystical realm of the world we live in. She resides in Cape Town, South Africa, where she enjoys spending time in the outdoors, kite surfing, and playing guitar.