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Tui Na Therapy Helps Stimulate Both the Energetic and Physical Body

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Anmo or Tui Na (pronounced ‘twee nar’) is a type of Chinese Massage that’s been practiced for thousands of years. In Chinese medicine, it is one of the main branches along with nutritional therapy, qigong/taichi, herbal medicine, and acupuncture. In Western societies, Tui Na is not as popular as acupuncture although in China and other Asian countries, it is widely used and actually practiced in almost all hospitals in China. Tui Na massage dates back as far back as 3000 years ago, and a lot of modern massage techniques such as Shiatsu and Swedish massage actually evolved from it.

In theory and practice Tui Na is very different from any other type of massage. It is designed to stimulate both the energetic and physical body; therapists use unorthodox massage techniques to release the tension and knots of muscles while simultaneously stimulating the acupuncture points and energy channels in order to balance and normalize energy (Qi) flow in the same manner as acupuncture. Basically, this implies that Tui Na massage has a gamut of ‘acupressure’ procedures, that it is sometimes referred to as ‘acupressure massage’, although that title can also allude to more rudimentary acupressure techniques that lack the understanding and underlying principles of Tui Na.

There are two basic techniques of Tui Na massage: The Yin and Yang techniques. In the Yin technique, the therapist uses a very gentle healing method involving light touch. It reinforces the function of the internal organs, removes stagnation from the energy channels, and balances and regulates Qi. This technique is a profoundly relaxing and calming therapy.

The Yang technique, on the other hand, is a strong physical therapy that involves deep penetrating massages that break down muscle tension and knots. It works extremely well for stiff and tensed muscles, but without causing pain as some deep massages often do.

In the real world, a qualified and skilled therapist often utilizes both the Yin and Yang methods as needed, and treatments mostly lie somewhere between these two polarities. The treatments are always customized and there are no predefined routines. Each person will be given a unique set of massages based on their own specific needs.

Tui Na follows the same detailed diagnostic procedures as acupuncture and the other forms of Chinese medicine. It also uses the same sophisticated understanding of the mind and body as these other therapies. This is what sets Tui Na from all other massage therapies. The practice and theory of Tui Na massage are inseparable.

As a result, the use of Tui Na can be far more than just a mere treatment for muscle problems; it can be used for a wide gamut of bodily problems including hormonal, psychological/emotional, circulatory, and respiratory problems among others. It also is used to help alleviate stress and in the maintenance of health.

What to Expect in a Tui Na Massage

Before treatment, a complete Chinese diagnosis will be performed on you by your therapist. This diagnosis is basically the same standard protocol you will get if you are getting acupuncture treatment. The therapist will question you about your overall health and your complaint. He or she then will take your pulse and observe your tongue.

Your own specific circumstances will define the type of treatment you’ll be getting. Usually, treatment will be done without the need to disrobe although occasionally, some patients will be asked by their therapist to remove some their clothing if oil is to be applied on the targeted parts of their body.

The therapist makes use of bodily cues to determine the appropriate strength of the massage especially when strong techniques are used since the massage itself is supposed to be a relatively painless procedure. In certain instances, only gentle and very light techniques are used since they can work just as well as the strong techniques.

Steven Goldfarb is a board certified and licensed acupuncturist and practitioner of alternative medicine. He is also the founder of Goldfarb Chiropractic and Acupuncture Center in West Orange, NJ.

Written by Valerie

October 31st, 2017 at 7:20 am

Posted in Acupuncture

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