Energywork or Bodywork?
I've often referred to myself as a bodyworker. Which sometimes has had the effect of giving the impression that I work on cars.
That confusion aside, there has also been the reference made to shiatsu as energy work, I suppose because the primary intention is on the meridians and therefore, ki flow, and therefore, energy flow throughout the body.
But, unlike say, Reiki, shiatsu often does require applying pressure to the body as well as using other physical techniques.
So, which is it?
Well, if you want to get technical, some would say that our bodies are energy. And that we actually have other, more etheric bodies that extend out far beyond our physical boundaries. It is in these bodies that our 'stuff' develops, and only when those issues aren't addressed, do they manifest in the denser physical body as illness.
One piece of writing I came across referred to our physical bodies as the 'energetic trash can' for our spiritual, mental and emotional layers.
It also notes, as I've written about before, that our central nervous system is the interface between the denser physical and lighter outer bodies. If you can visualize the CNS as an antenna of sorts... bringing in vibratory information from the 'external' world to affect the tissues, organs, muscles and bodily functions, as well as sending out vibrations like a tuning fork, you can get a sense of the intention of the shin tai work I do, which is to clear any restrictions and stuckness from around the spine, within which the spinal cord and the CNS signals travel (as well as one of the main trunks of the meridian system, the Governing Vessel).
So, I guess, long story short, the body really is energy, and what we do to the body affects the energy. (And likewise, what we do to the energy affects the body..)
Like to read more about this stuff? Check out Saul Goodman's book, "Light Body Activation: Science, Dialogue & Non-Practices for Interactive Evolution".