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Now offering cupping therapy! Can be added to any session.

Ashiatsu Deepfeet Massage Therapy

Kick start your career with some new moves!


Eliminate stress on wrists, thumbs and reduce therapist burn out.


Make more money by the hour and see more clients per day!


Have fun while you work.


Take years of stress off lumbar area from bending over the massage table.


Provide your clients with improved posture and movement while relieving their pain


Deliver greater pressure with your feet.


Enjoy your clients' raving about your fabulous, comfortable deep tissue barefoot massage.



Ashiatsu class schedule

Ashiatsu in ActionBarefoot Massage by Mary-Claire Fredette

Deep tissue barefoot massage classes should really be live, in a classroom setting. Those who believe they can learn to use gravity to do deep tissue massage, chew on this: your liablity insurance will likely NOT cover you if you've not taken an approved course. What happens if someone gets hurt during a session?

The great thing about our barefoot massage CEU classes is that you hear the instructor talk about the strokes over and over again. You feel each stroke from her. You WORK on her during class, receiving valuable feedback about your strokes; are they safe?, are they smooth?, are they comfortable?, can they better?

And to top it all off, we have seasoned male guest clients (not like steak seasoning, silly, like "well-trained") who will give you feedback about each one of your ashiatsu barefoot strokes. It's often the favorite part of class for the masage therapists.

Learn Barefoot Massage Certification Courses
Ashiatsu bare feet

 Where can you learn
Ashiatsu Barefoot Bar massage ?

I specialize in deep tissue massage therapy (barefoot massage)  and offer continuing education classes for massage therapists in my Mt. Healthy studio (Cincinnati). The massage therapy studio is located at 7813 Affinity Place, Cincinnat, OH, 44231. 

I teach Ashiatsu Oriental Bar Therapy (Deepfeet Bar Therapy) and Ashi-Thai at my permanent training facility in Cincinnati, and portable Ashiatsu bars allow me to train Ashiatsu or Ashi-Thai at your location in the Midwest. I typically travel as far as 8 hours driving distance from Cincinnati. Email me for more information at More  information can be found here.


PHOTOS of Ashiatsu Oriental Bar Therapy classes can be found here.


Your existing clients will be amazed at the depth of compression you can give to the back, legs and hips. Your new clients will keep coming back for more. This is just the beginning of reduced therapist fatigue and increased profits! 

By adding Ashiatsu Deepfeet Bar Therapy barefoot massage to your repertoire, you instantly increase the clientele you serve. Big guys, women and athletes who may have in the past look at you and think, "You could never give me enough pressure" will be amazed at what even the smallest of therapists can do for them utilizing this modality. 

Are you a bigger therapist? You can still learn this style of barefoot massage. It's all about grace and shifting your body weight. 



Learn better one on one? Private classes are available at my location. Add $200 on if you take it by youself or split that additional cost with a friend and pay $100 each therapist additional. Email me for details at 

Barefoot Basics ©
Introductory - 3 days - 25 CEU - $649
Pre-requisite: Licensed Massage Therapist understands anatomy and physiology.

Barefoot Basics is just the beginning in this entry level 3 day cours. It  is designed to teach massage professionals how to utilize gravity to perform the ultimate barefoot effleurage application. Learn how to save your hands by letting gravity assist you on the table. Therapist will learn how to safely perform one footed posterior strokes, history of barefoot massage, cautions, contraindications, proper body mechanics for gravity assisted massage, proper draping, construction and design of bars in the treatment room, marketing the technique and foot hygiene. 

You will feel every single stroke from the instructor and she will feel yours. On the final day, we provide seasoned male guest cllients for the therapist to utilize their new barefoot deep tissue massage skills. The course is designed for all kinds of learners: those who like to read will have a manual with all the strokes clearly explained. Therapists will receive the work from other massage therapists in class as well as the instructor. They will also have the opportunity to watch an educational video. 

Classes at your location are possible with a minimum number of students--cost is $700 per therapist, and additional fees may apply.                                        

Barefoot Anterior and Side-lying©
1 day - 8 CEU - $229
Pre-requisite: Barefoot Basics must have been taken first.                                               .

This course can be taken with Barefoot Basics or by itself. It is conveniently  taught right after Barefoot Basics for convenience and for those therapists who want more in-depth knowledge of anterior work. Therapists will be taught a protocol that will integrate anterior and side lying strokes. The client's eyes are comfortably draped in the anterior routine so he/she doesn't stare up at you!

Side lying strokes can be used in conjunction with sports massage or when working as a team with your clients to locate the source of pain patterns and to treat them. You will learn to effectively work muscles that are difficult to palpate in the prone and supine position. Therapists often stay for the anterior work but love to receive the side-lying!

Advanced Ashiatsu
3 days - 25 CEU - $649
Pre-requisite: Certified graduate of Barefoot Basics.

It is highly recommended that the Barefoot Basics deep tissue massage grad has had plenty of time to practice Barefoot Basics and is comfortable performing all the strokes. This course is recommended for either smaller to medium sized therapists who regularly work on much larger, healthy clients and for those with very good upper arm strength.  You will need a healthy fitness level, with upper arm and abdominal strength to deliver comfortable two footed moves to your training partner. Students will learn two-footed posterior strokes that are gliding to be combined with the sequences and protocols learned in Barefoot Basics. Theory and lecture focuses on specific back conditions while identifying and qualifying clients for this treatment.

On day one, the therapist will learn both two footed strokes as well as modifications to these strokes. The modifications will be the perfect way to add more moves to your one footed routine. Days two and three, we will bring in healthy male clients for the therapists to work on. On day three, therapists will learn amazing strokes which will help them smoothly transition one foot to another without having to leave the client. Two different routines will be taught in this advanced level deep tissue barefoot massage class.

All therapists will receive work during days one and three of this class. 


2 days-16 CEUs-$429
Prerequisite: Basic understanding of anatomy

In this Ashi-Thai workshop, you'll be guided through many manipulations why holding onto a bar for better balance, stability and support. The Ashi-Thai workshops has been divided into two modules-Anterior and Posterior. The combinations of the techniques have been arranged following traditional energy lines and stretches for elongating and relieving tightness in commonly used muscle groups. Unlike Ashiatsu Oriental Bar Therapy, in Ashi-Thai the client wears comfortable and loose fitting clothing. No oil or cream is applied.

This flowing and rhythmic approach was developed for any body worker who prefers using the massage table over a floor mat and wants to stretch a client prior to a massage. As a complement to any Ashiatsu session, Ashi-Thai can revitalize energy lines and leave a profound effect by relieving muscular tension and improving range of motion. Ashi-Thai can also be used as a treatment by itself.

Class cost includes Ashi-Thai manual, CEUs and certification. You may purchase the 2 DVD set Ashi-Thai educational DVDs to study at home if you wish ($100). They are available at class. 

Ashiatsu at AMTA

A little Ashiatsu barefoot massage history

Ruthie Hardee, founder of Ashiatsu Oriental Bar Therapy (AOBT), had seen various types of barefoot massage as a child while traveling with her missionary parents. She witnessed different styles of barefoot massage in Manila, Africa and the Indies.

Although many of the roots of Ashiatsu are Eastern ("ashi" means "foot, while "atsu" translates as "pressure"),  ashiatsu therapists in the United States use a distinctly different style of barefoot massage. Traditional barefoot shiatsu is done through clothing on a mat. With Chavutti Thirummal, performed in India for over 1000 years, the therapist typically uses a rope tied end to end and glides along the completely undraped client. Other forms of barefoot massage massage require props for balance such as chairs, poles a single bar, bamboo rods and even chains.

Hardee, however, wanted her style of barefoot (Ashiatsu) massage to be luxurious and comfortable for both the client as well as the therapist. Hence, the system of parallel wooden bars placed over the massage table. The  ashiatsu therapist is able to use the bars overhead for balance while she or he glides gracefully over the client's lubricated skin. Hardee began Ashiatsu Oriental Bar Therapy training for therapists in over 10 years ago.

While other forms of ashiatsu massage take into consideration breathing patterns, chi, and other energetic work, AOBT focuses on muscle and bone. Many orthopedic surgeons, chiropractors and physicians are fans of Hardee's style of barefoot massage. As Dr. Eric Dieffenbaugher, owner of Progressive Chiropractic Health and Wellness in Fairfield, OH says, "Ashiatsu is a wonderful adjunct to chiropratic care, in particular in regards to patients with lumbar disc problems because of it's deep compression and ability to traction out the spine."

This Western style of barefoot massage can be very deep but can also be modified for those who don't like as much pressure. While contraindicated for such clients as those who have uncontrolled blood pressure, women who are pregnant or are trying to conceive, and those on heavy blood thinners, this ashiatsu massage treatment can be very helpful for those clients with chronic low back pain. Ashiatsu massage is known to help improve posture and relieve pain, and yet do it in a gentle but deep fashion.

Have a group of massage therapists in your area wanting deep tissue massage barefoot Ashiatsu or Ashi-Thai training? Please contact me at

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Affinity Massage Studio
7813 Affinity Place
Cincinnati, Ohio 45231

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