When you feel pain, you want to massage the problem area. We discovered that certain spots on the body had a greater affect than others and began mapping these ‘points.’
A Chinese medical practitioner who utilizes tuina in their practice would provide hands on work like any other massage therapist, but would be following a Chinese medical treatment principle by selecting specific points like an Acupuncturist.
Moxibustion is the burning of the herb mugwort. It is called moxa for short.
Like tuina/acupressure, moxa pre-dates acupuncture. Just like tuina, when you have pain, you want to stimulate the area. Heat is also a pain relieving therapy. We began using heat to warm spots on our body which led to moxibustion. When we began puncturing the body, we would also burn moxa over the area = Acumoxa.
Moxa is an excellent therapy which patients can do at home to continue their treatment outside of the treatment room. After showing my patients how to use moxa, I recommend they buy a moxa boxto use over their lower abdomen or on their lower back to improve their general vitality. Pole moxamay be used to stimulate specific spots or joints, but you must be careful not to burn yourself and confirming that you have extinguished it when done.
Cupping and Gua Sha are techniques to move stagnation up to four inches near the surface of the body and to draw energy to the surface.
It is often used to move stagnation out of the muscles, allowing fresh, oxygenated blood to come in and nourish the tissues. Great for breaking up cellulite! It is also used to separate the tissues at the surface of the body to improve the venting of pathogens from the exterior.