Similar to massage, Reiki helps clients to relax and promotes healing. But what exactly is this Japanese practice? We find out.


Reiki transfers energy from the therapist to the patient.
Reiki is a healing therapy where the therapist transfers energy from themselves to the patient.



We have Mikao Usui, a Japanese Buddhist, to thank for developing the practice of Reiki in the early 1900s. Through study, research and meditation Usui discovered the healing system of Reiki and began sharing his knowledge. Today, different branches of Reiki are practiced around the world but they all lead back to the Usui System of Reiki Healing and share the same basic principles.


Reiki is a gentle form of healing that harnesses Reiki energy (also known as ‘universal life energy’) to promote wellbeing. When practising Reiki you are connecting to and channelling this energy, which flows from you into the person you’re treating.

During a Reiki session there is no massage or manipulation. The client usually lies fully clothed on a massage table, while the practitioner puts their hands on or near the body in a series of hand positions around the head and shoulders, stomach, and feet. These positions are generally held for about three to 10 minutes, with the whole session lasting between 45 and 90 minutes.


“The true purpose of the Reiki method is to correct the heart-mind, keep the body fit, and lead a happy life using the spiritual capabilities humans are endowed with since birth.” Mikao Usui.

Although there are no definitive scientific studies on the powers of Reiki, anecdotal evidence abounds. Devotees believe the practice heals the physical body along with the mind and soul with effects including a sense of deep relaxation, contentment, an ability to better cope with problems and stress relief.


To become a Reiki practitioner you need to be attuned to Reiki energy through a session with a Reiki Master. They will pass the energy on to you, which you can then channel for the rest of your life. Your ability to practice Reiki isn’t based on your individual talent; anyone can learn as it is simply passed on from teacher to student.