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In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), medical therapies were
often classified into “external” and “internal” treatments. Tui-na was one of
the most ancient external methods, especially suitable for use on the elderly
population and on infants. Tui-na has no side effects unlike many modern
drug-based and chemical-based treatments. It has been used to treat or
complement the treatment of many conditions, especially specific
musculoskeletal disorders and chronic stress-related disorders of the
digestive, respiratory, and reproductive systems.
Tui-na has a very long history in China and has been used for almost 5 000
years. Archaeological studies in recent years have shown that as early as the
New Stone Age around 2700 B.C., the Chinese ancestors in the Yellow River
Valley had accumulated primitive Tui-na techniques from their forefathers. In
the manuscript “The Yellow Emperor’s Canon of Internal Medicine”, Warring
States Period 403-221 B.C, the reference to this type of external treatment was
called “Dao Yin An Qiao” -it is the earliest systemic medical reference in TCM
Till Ming Dynasty 1368-1644 various other terms were replaced by Tui-na and in
that period Tui-na had developed greatly and made breakthrough progress in the
pediatric Tui-na therapy. In the Jin & Tang Dynasty, 265-905 A.D., Tui-Na
had developed into a separate study in the Imperial Medical College. At this
time, t was popularized and spread to many foreign countries such as Korea and
Japan (see Shiatsu).
What is the Tui-Na?
The term “Tui-na” was translated directly into “Push-Grasp” in English. Tui-na
is an integral part of TCM and it is based on the principles of TCM.
It is special style hands-on bodywork, a combination of deep and vigorous
muscular stretching using various acupuncture points techniques following the
meridians of the body. It includes pressing, kneading, rolling, grasping,
rubbing, shaking, pushing, pulling, etc.
The Child Tui-na is a very specific and tender therapy. It is used as a
complementary and alternative therapy for children’s condition (6 months to 12
years old). Given that the energy (acupuncture) meridians are different and
flow differently than in an adult Child Tui-na has specific manipulation
techniques and procedures.
While performing Tui-na, the practitioner concentrates its mind, regulates its
breath, and actuates the energy (Qi) and power of its entire body towards its
bands. Even when supplementary strength is needed, the practitioner should
never stop breathing or interrupt concentration.
How does Tui-na work?
The manipulations of Tui-na treatment could:
· Correct abnormal anatomic location or relation;
· Adjusting biological info;
· Activating Qi and blood flow, removing stasis along the meridians;
· Dredging the meridians and collaterals and limbering the joints up;
· Regulating Yin and Yang;
· Regulating the functions of viscera;
By above those to restore the body balance of Yin-Yang, to relieve the pain or
ache, to recover the functionality of muscle, tendon, bone and joint, to
promote the health. Tui-na also could aid relaxation and encourage the healthy
flow of life energy (ZhengQi) throughout the stimulation of the lymphatic
system. It will also help to breakdown and reduce fat deposits, firm and
greatly improve skin tone.
Other benefits include: strengthening of the immune system,
stabilizing blood pressure, calming, soothing the nervous system and reducing
How we do use Tui-na in our practice?
Generally we use Tui-na as a preparatory therapy for acupuncture or after
acupuncture to improve its effectiveness.
As a stand alone therapy it is used to relieve stress and relax, release energy
blockages along meridians and other conditions related to stress.
Tui-na for children
For children, Tui-na is one of the most effective and amazing tools of
Traditional Chinese Medicine. It is a very useful, natural, soft, smooth, safe,
and painless therapeutic tool in our practice. Also we can train the parents to
use for their children some simple and effective manipulations to strengthen
the immune system, improve digestion, soothe the child’s mood, etc.