What Symptoms Can Therapeutic Massage Treat?
Therapeutic message can help in many different kinds of chronic health problems, the main ones including sleep disorders (insomia), chronic fatigue syndromes, fibromyalgia, chronic pains and discomforts on different spots of the body.
In massage for relaxation the aim is to give a balanced full body treatment combining yang techniques to expel stagnant qi and activate flow, with yin techniques to calm and relax. A set routine is followed but adapted to the constitution and condition of the receiver. A session can last up to two hours and is a very deep experience particularly if there is strong qi communication.
Here is an recent example from my own practice. A woman complained of stiff painful shoulders. Diagnosis based on the four examinations revealed cold damp bi syndrome affecting the hand tai yang and yang mingchannels with underlying liver and kidney emptiness. Massage treatment started with gentle but firm kneading arround the shoulder and along the affected channels in the arm to activate the qi and blood. When the area was warm and relaxed, deep persistant techniques were applied to ashi points and acupoints to dredge cold and damp. Next shaking and rotating manipulations were used to open the joints and increase mobility followed by vigorous rubbing using a herbal ointment to warm the channels. Finally soft stroking and external qi projection were used to balance qi and guide the cold damp pathogens down the channels and out.
This woman's symptoms improved considerably after two sessions. Later treatment began to focus more on the back and abdomen to strengthen the liver and kidney.
This example illustrates acupoint therapy's extrordinary ability to treat chronic pain. However the range of problems which can be treated by Chinese massage is very large. There are over 140 medical conditions which respond well. These include not only musculoskeletal problems but many internal diseases. For example in treating abdominal and digestive problems related to Spleen emptiness or Liver stagnation, I have found abdominal meridian massages can make a crucial difference to the patient's improvement.