On Clothing and Reiki
Reiki sessions and classes are traditionally conducted in street clothing in the USA and in most of the Western world. It is usually suggested that a client or student wear loose, soft clothing, without belts or constricting bands. Shoes are generally discarded during a session to provide the maximum in relaxation. Some legitimate exceptions do exist., however.
For those Reiki practitioners who are also massage therapists, shiatsu therapists, accupuncturists, or some form of medical practitioner [doctor, nurse, physical therapist], there may be times when their patient is already either nude and draped, or in some form of specialized clothing for medical treatment. Reiki can be administered at that time as well, as long as its use is consistent with the requirements and ethics of that profession. There are, at the moment, also some Reiki practitioners who are experimenting with giving non-traditional Reiki to a nude, draped client, in the same manner that traditional massage sessions are done. Many of these practitioners are also massage therapists, so draping is already their practice. As long as this is done responsibly and legally, it is in the tradition of Reiki evolving over time. This will vary by area, for reasons which are both cultural and legal.
Some recent studies about the human energy field and its detection and/or radiation suggest that synthetic fibers may inhibit its flow by as much as 60-80 percent, while natural fibers such as cotton, may inhibit it only about 15 percent [this may explain why there are isolated reports of experimental nude attunements/sessions, which are not the practice or tradition of modern Western Reiki practitioners].
Some Reiki practitioners do, in fact, suggest to their clients that they wear only very simple cotton clothes for a session, including cotton undergarments, and to loosen or remove both belts and bras. [Some Reiki practitioners will consent to give Reiki to a client who is either in special clothing, or draped, such as in a hospital. All of this must be considered in the context of legal, cultural, and personal comfort requirements.] I generally follow this practice, by suggesting that the student or client wear simple clothes made of natural fibers, such as cotton or wool, and be barefoot, without jewelry. Some of my students and clients tell me that attunements and/or sessions seem enhanced that way.