Sotai or Sotai Ho is a technique or method created by Keizo Hashimoto. Doctor Hashimoto was born in 1897. He studied Medicine at The University of Nagata, in Japan. During World War I he was drafted, and after the war he studied Neurology at The Imperial University of Tohoku.
Dr Hashimoto established four factors for optimum health: respiration, nutrition, movement and (positive) thinking. However, he is best known for applying his methods to movement therapy. He stated that one should always do those movements that are good for one's body, which fit to one's biomechanical recourses.
Dr Hashimoto realised that some of the techniques used by Oriental Medicine experts, helped with the relief of pains and aches by making the person move the body in the opposite direction to the pain. He then understood the importance of movement and muscular and articular synchronisation for the cure and treatment of some conditions.
His Sotai techniques were developed over a 50-year period. Doctor Hashimoto believed that "body misalignment is the cause of most diseases, thus most diseases can be cured if the body regains its natural alignment"
Thus, the fundamental idea behind Sotai Ho is that distortion in the locomotor system can be corrected by moving the joints in comfortable directions. This promotes healing in the circulatory, endocrine and
Yoshikazu Nemoto, born in Ishikawa, was one of the most dedicated and innovative followers of Dr Hashimoto. He studied at The University of Science in Tokyo where he graduated in Physics and Chemistry. He taught physiology for 5 years at The University of Stomatology in Tokyo. He later started working in
the research department of a food health & hygiene control company. Practising Sorinji Kenpo, a martial art that uses the opponent's strength to defeat them with dislocations, he learned about muscular and articular synchronisation. He also graduated from the Oriental Medicine School Kinsei Gakuin in Tokyo, met Keizo Hashimoto and followers and started studying sotai. Today he has a thriving practice in Tokyo.
Arturo Valenzuela studied Sotai Ho with Professor Nemoto in Japan and after graduating in his school, went back to Spain and created the Japanese Sotai Institute when Professor Nemoto asked him to open a school akin to his Institute for Research and Developemnt of Sotai.
He coined the translation postural reeducation because of the results of this method, since sotai ho in itself means to use or move the body,
so = movement/manipulation, tai = body and ho = technique/method.
Arturo Valenzuela has been the greatest innovator in the field of Sotai since this technique was born. He has created many new Sotai exercises based on his knowledge of functional anatomy, and has simplified enormously the way the exercises are done. This has resulted in more effective - and easier to do - self-Sotai exercises.
He has also done research into the effectiveness of the passive part of Sotai: articular rotations.
This has been freely acknowledged by most practitioners in Japan, and in turn, they have changed the way they practise Sotai, having accepted Arturo's innovations.
Arturo Valenzuela working with Professor Nemoto
Arturo has never stopped giving talks and practical demonstrations on Sotai, as well as teaching and training professionals. He is the author of the first book on Sotai published in Europe.
References: Hashimoto, Keizo (November 1983). Sotai Balance and Health Through Natural Movement
Nemoto, Yoshikazu (2005). 新編 臨床家のための連動操体法. Home exercises. RENDOU SOTAI HO.
Valenzuela Serrano, Arturo (2006). Sotai: Reeducación Postural Integral
To download the basic Sotai (Sotai ho) exercises click here.