Fukushin: Abdominal Palpation in<br>The Kampo Tradition

Fukushin: Abdominal Palpation in
The Kampo Tradition

Regular price $600.00 Special Offer

AIM Academy is pleased to welcome Nigel Dawes to Toronto for his 3-Day Fukushin seminar. This course will offer participants an exclusive exploration into the age-old method of Fukushin and its foundational role in Kampo, Traditional Japanese Herbalism.

About Fukushin

This workshop will be hands-on and practical with the aim of introducing participants to the basics of abdominal palpation and its role in the Kampo tradition. This exploration will be beneficial to practicing herbalists, but anyone with experience and background in East Asian Medicine will also learn a great deal from the information shared and practice done.

The abdomen represents the body's anatomical center, housing as it does the vital organs as well as forming its myofascial and structural core. In Asian systems of medicine, it is also the source of vital energy acting as a crucible for the mutual transmutation of acquired and pre-natal essence. It also represents a metaphysical cauldron in which the vital organs play a pivotal role, each acting as repository and catalyst for specific manifestations at the psychic and emotional level.

Throughout the history and development of Traditional Asian Medical systems the abdomen has thus occupied a pivotal role in both diagnostic and treatment paradigms. In more recent times however, its significance in the clinic has dwindled and many practitioners, especially in modern China, rarely use it in practice. This has not been the case in Japan where, from the Edo Period in particular, Acupuncturists as well as Kampo and Shiatsu practitoners have each developed highly sophisticated methods of using the abdomen in assessment and practice.

One such traditional method is that employed by modern herbalists (mostly MD’s) in Japan who use a detailed and highly specific form of abdominal palpation to obtain information which strongly influences the selection of herbal prescription.

This workshop will present one of these methods of abdominal palpation currently practiced within the Kampo tradition as developed by Otsuka Yoshinori during the last century. Each abdominal conformation will be presented and discussed from the perspective of practical herbal prescribing. A strong practical component will ensure that the participants leave the workshop with a firm grasp of the basics of how to obtain and interpret these abdominal findings.


This workshop will essentially be hands-on and very practical with the aim of introducing participants to the basics of abdominal palpation in the Kampo tradition. It will primarily be of interest to practicing herbalists but anyone with experience and background in East Asian Medicine will find the information and practice highly useful.

Day 1 of the workshop will be devoted to a detailed powerpoint slide presentation forming the basis for the Day 2 demonstration and practice session in which participants will both observe the methodology of the palpatory exam and have a chance to practice it themselves with correction. A detailed clinical workup will be done using Fukushin on volunteer participants from the group in order to demonstrate direct clinical application. There will be ample opportunity for pairwork practice. Day 3 will begin with a review of both the technique of the exam as well as the interpretation of clinical findings. The rest of the day will be devoted to clinical work with outside patients invited in for assessment and treatment.


This course is for herbalists, such as TCMPs, Naturopaths and Western Herbalists, interested in and learning about traditional Japanese Herbalism. 

Please note that this seminar is a part of a future series of the Kampo Tradition. This seminar is a spectacular introduction to anyone interested in the therapeutic tradition.


Day 1

  • Background and history of Fukushin
  • The relevance of Fukushin in modern practice
  • Constitution Vs Pattern
  • Otsuka’s 13 abdominal conformations:
    • Description of morbid state
    • Interpretation of findings
    • Example formula prescriptions
  • Q & A

Day 2

  • Demonstration of abdominal exam (technique & methodology)
  • Pressure / posture/ breathing / exam sequences
  • Pair-work practice (technique)
  • Case study work-ups (on students) with interpretation & prescribing
  • Pair-work practice (Diagnosis and treatment)

Day 3

  • Review of abdomen exam technique
  • Review of interpretation of findings
  • Patient work


      Please be ready to give and receive a treatment in class.

      Course material and supplies will be provided.

      Instructor: Nigel Dawes, M.A. (Cantab.), B.Ac.C., R.C.H.M., N.C.C.A.O.M., L.Ac.

      Nigel Dawes

      Nigel Dawes has been practicing and teaching Asian Medicine for 35 years. He lived and studied in Japan for 5 years followed by hospital internships in China before returning to the UK where he opened a practice and founded his own Shiatsu school in 1987.

      He moved to the US in 1993 and has been involved variously in undergraduate and graduate OM education, higher education administration and political work in the field, clinical practice and publications including numerous articles, 2 books on Shiatsu and a recent translation of a Japanese text: Kampo: A Clinical Guide to Theory and Practice, Otsuka, K., Churchill Livingstone, 2010. He currently has a practice in New York incorporating Acupuncture, Shiatsu and Kampo and is on faculty at Pacific College of Asian Medicine and Tristate College of Acupuncture.

      In 2010, he founded and now directs the NY Kampo Institute through which he has been teaching regular Fukushin workshops throughout the US, in Europe, Israel and Australia for the last 15 years. The Institute also offers its flagship comprehensive professional Kampo training, an intensive 300hr post-graduate program offered throughout the US and internationally.


      November 25 - 27, 2022
      9:00AM - 5:30PM

      $600 until October 16, 2022
      $700 after October 16, 2022
      AIM Students & Alumni: $600

      AIM Academy
      455 Spadina Ave, Suite 300, Toronto ON, M5S 2G8

      Please register online or call 416-323-1818 ex. 200. Payment can be made by Visa or MasterCard or in person using cash or interac. Registrations are taken on a first come, first serve basis. Register early to avoid disappointment.

      Cancellation policy
      Cancellations made by the student on or before two weeks prior to the course start date will result in a $35 cancellation fee. Student cancellations made after that date will not receive a refund.

      A certificate will be issued at the end of the course.