A typical Reiki session will start off with a brief conversation that lets the client tell why he or she is there, what is going on in his/her life, and what he or she is hoping to get out of the session(s).
This gives the chance to get a feel for the client's energies prior to starting the session and allows for even more insight into the current situation.
The more the client is able let go, the more benefit they will receive from the session(s).
The next step is to have the client (fully clothed) lay down on his or her back on the massage table.
The practitioner then generally starts at the head and works down toward the feet, stopping at the knees or possibly the ankles.
There are general hand positions that the majority of practitioners follow, at least to some degree. These hand positions attempt to cover all the seven main chakras and all the major organs.
Each hand position is held for anywhere from 2 - 5 minutes or longer. During this time the practitioner simply allows the energy to channel out his or her hands and into the client.
After all the positions are completed, it is time to "ground" the client back down to the planet.
Due to the nature of Reiki, it is quite difficult to say exactly what will be experienced during a session.
This will depend on any number of things including, but not limited to, the practitioner, each individual client, the level to which that client is able to open up to the energies, and what areas the energy itself is addressing.
Often people describe their experience by saying they felt as if they are floating during the session, or they were being enveloped by or wrapped in a warm, loving, nurturing light that flowed throughout their being.
People usually become very "astral" or disassociated from their bodies, during a session and, for people who are able to let go, it is very common for them to sleep through the entire session.