According to traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), Qi is the body’s vital energy or life force. A person’s Qi must be balanced and freely flowing to ensure health and wellbeing. Qi can become blocked, causing pain or tension in the muscles and joints. When there is pain in the body, there is stagnation. If you remove stagnation, you remove pain. TCM views pain as resulting from stagnation, congestion, or blockage of Qi or vital energy (such as blood, vital fluids, phlegm, and lymph).
Different techniques exist to unblock and allow Qi to move freely through the body. Tui Na, Cupping, and Gua Sha are such techniques. These techniques are all complementary with acupuncture and provide a holistic approach to healing.
Tui Na is believed to be the oldest system of bodywork. Tui Na massage promotes harmony and balance within the body by stimulating the flow of Qi.
What are Tui Na’s therapeutic benefits?
*Boosts the circulation of blood by stimulating the body’s flow of energy.
*Reduces pain and improves the functioning of those suffering with musculoskeletal disorders
*Eases the symptoms of those who suffer with Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, Osteoarthritis, and early stage diabetic foot
*Helps those who suffer with depression
*Reduces stress, improves sleep, and encourages relaxation
*Reduces neck and back pain
*Helps with headaches, respiratory and digestive issues
What does Tui Na feel like?
The name of this therapy describes the actions utilized in treatment. Tui means “to push” and Na means “to grab or squeeze.” Some compare Tui Na to a combination of shiatsu (a Japanese bodywork practice) and acupressure massage. Tui na is practiced on fully clothed patients and its techniques are similar to those in Western massages.
Cupping is like an inverse massage. Instead of applying downward pressure to muscles, cupping uses gentle pressure to pull muscles upward. The practitioner uses glass cups to lift and loosen connective tissues, which increases lymph and blood flow to one’s skin and muscles. The suction and negative pressure of cupping sedates the nervous system, helping the body relax. Cupping breaks up the blockage and restores the body’s natural flow of energy.
What conditions can cupping treat?
Cupping is an excellent modality for conditions such as neck and back pain, stiff muscles, high blood pressure, rheumatism, migraines, anxiety, fatigue, cellulitis, weight loss, and detoxing the body.
This healing technique uses a special tool to gently rub the skin and improve microcirculation of the soft tissue, which improves blood flow. Gua Sha expels pathogens and moves stagnant Qi and blood by releasing stagnant blood in the capillaries and heat or tightness in the tissues. THe result is relief for chronic pain and inflammation and healing for scar tissue.
What conditions can Gua Sha treat?
Gua Sha helps those who suffer with fibromyalgia, chronic pain, and joint pain. It is also suitable for colds, muscular tension or injury, heat stroke and a host of other issues.
What does Gua Sha feel like?
The practitioner isolates the area of skin where there is an injury or imbalance and creates a therapeutic rash using a technique called “press-stroking.” This involves rubbing a smooth-edged instrument across the surface of the skin several times in a downward direction away from the head. Gua Sha is most often used on the back, neck and shoulders. For some, Gua Sha may leave a temporary marking on the skin as a result of blood vessels opening up below the skin of the treated area.