How bodywork, like shiatsu, acupuncture, cupping and sports massage can increases circulation, flexibility, and motion.
The above techniques, amongst other things, release tension in muscles, connective tissues, tendons, ligaments, and joints, keeping them more fluid and and less prone to injury.
When muscle tension is decreased, muscles stop contracting the primary blood vessels and blood flow increases, in turn your lost range of motion improves, your flexibility has a better chance of improving and you are able to move in a more free and integrated manner.
In the oriental systems of healing we look at patterns and nature, we see that nature is very repetitive in the sense that we can see what is happing in the big picture (macro system) by looking at the details of the small picture (micro system), we see this in treatments like reflexology, iridology, auricular therapy, etc. where the body can be diagnosed/treated by looking at the bodies micro systems, like the eyes, ears, feet, etc.
When we look at ourselves as individuals as the micro system and the nature we know as nature as the macro system then we can look at nature for inspiration and a better understanding of how we function.
For this example we can look at the willow tree for inspiration. We see that when the willow tree is in its proper environment, it has a quality that most of us would like to have or get back. Its branches are strong yet supple, no matter the weather it can move and adapt. We can also look at bamboo. Bamboo takes a long time to get established, but when it is growing it grows very quick. What I wanted to get across is that, both of these have a preparation time before they are at their strongest.
Coming back to us as individuals. In order to get back to our natural state, a place where, for most of us, the ability to move should be a normal place, but because of lifestyle choices it is not, we need to get this movement and flow back as much as possible.
This can be done by lifestyle changes such as diet, more correct movement patterns incorporated back into your life, qigong, etc. which can be done by ourselves, and when it is too far out of reach and we need some help, a good bodywork therapist can get you back on your path.