How Does it Work?
During the first few minutes it is common to feel a prickling sensation on the areas being treated. The nerve endings are being stimulated and the body’s natural reaction is to boost circulation to the area – one can feel a warm, tingling sensation as this begins to happen. The second reaction is for the body to release endorphin’s – our own natural and safe pain relief. As these are released the muscles unwind and you relax into the spikes. The body, mind and nerves adjust and un-wind, and you drift into a state of deep relaxation. Regular users of the Shakti Mat get more profound benefits and little to no initial discomfort because their bodies become accustomed to the effects. Tension is much lower in the areas the mat is regularly applied to.
There are millions of users globally and 5,000 years of use by Indian yogis – a true testament to the bed of nails’ effectiveness at relaxing the mind and body.
5 Reasons to Use the Shakti Mat
- It prompts your body to produce powerful pain reducing and anti-inflammatory hormones, such as endorphins, which are comparable to morphine in their pain reducing properties, but without the risks of dependence and side effects of chemical substances.
- Releases the muscle tension and spasms that are often the cause of back pain, migraines and restricted blood flow. This relieves the pressure on the spine, pinched nerves and and restores normal blood circulation.
- Promotes blood-circulation. As we age, our joints and inter-vertebral discs start to degenerate from the lack of nutrients and hydration. The intense stimulation from the Shakti Mat increases blood circulation, which helps bring oxygen, nutrients and both pain reducing and anti-inflammatory hormones to the joints, bones, muscles and other damaged tissue. At the same time this process warms and detoxifies the body.
- Reduces stress. Chronic stress is one of the largest modern health concerns. It causes elevated levels of Cortisol, which has been linked to loss of bone density, insomnia, obesity, anxiety, depression and autoimmune disorders. Through activating the parasympathetic nervous system the Shakti Mat combats stress.
- Blocks the pain messages from reaching the central nervous system. As an immediate solution, the Shakti Mat distracts your body from feeling the pain. Gate Control Theory of Pain explains the pain relieving effects of the Shakti Mat through peripheral nerve stimulation.
The Shakti Mat can be placed anywhere on the body that benefits from acupressure – the back, the feet, the neck and any other sore muscles.
Step 1: Place your Shakti Mat on a flat surface like on the floor or on your bed.
Step 2: After making sure you have bare skin against the mat, sit down in front of the mat and slowly roll down on top of it.
Step 3: The first 5 minutes may give you a feeling of pain. This is simply the result of tension release. The more tension you have accumulated in your body, the more pain you’ll initially experience. By focussing on your breath, the tension will easily be released.
Step 4: Even if you feel pain, try staying on the mat and focussing on your breath. The body sometimes needs some time to rebalance, and soon endorphine release will replace the discomfort. Stay on the Shakti Mat for between 15 minutes and an hour.
Is it painful to use the Shakti Acupressure Mat?
During first few minutes it’s common to feel a pricking warm sensation on the areas being affected. This is just tension build up being released. The more discomfort you feel, the more tension being unwound. Regular users of the Shakti Mat get little to no pain at all because tension is much lower in the areas the mat is applied to.
For how long and how often can I lie on the Shakti Acupressure Mat?
We suggest that you start with 15 minutes. When more accustomed to the Shaktimat 20-60 minutes per session is standard. However, it is not dangerous to exceed the time limit. Many people fall asleep on the mat and that is perfectly safe. We recommend regular, if possible daily, use.
Can the Shakti Mat be washed?
Yes. When needed you can handwash the mat using detergent and luke warm water. Take the inner foam out of the mat before you wash it. Allow to hang and drip dry. Avoid washing machines and tumble dryers as the plastic points may get damaged.
Is the Shakti Mat only to be used on the back?
Nerves branch out from the back to the rest of the body, which means that a back treatment effects the whole body. However, the mat can be used on specific ‘problem areas’ of the body.
Is it appropriate for children to use the Shakti Mat?
Children tend to like it a lot. It helps them to calm down and relax. Try using it at bedtime.
Can people with heart problems use the Shakti Mat?
We cannot recommend the usage to this particular group of people. Always consult your physician if you have a heart related disease before using the Shakti Mat.
Is it good for pregnant women to use the Shakti Mat?
We do not recommend it for pregnant women. Always consult your midwife before using the Shakti Mat if you are pregnant.
Can I use the Shakti Mat if I have a skin disease?
The points may feel irritating or sensitive to inflamed skin. You may ease the sensation by placing a thin cloth between your skin and the Shakti Mat. You should of course back off and stop the treatment if you feel you are getting worse.