Acupressure Massage Training

What Is Acupressure Massage

What Is Acupressure Massage?

Acupressure is an alternative medicine procedure that offers exactly what the name suggests: a combination of acupuncture and applied pressure.

Tapping into the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) points of the body, acupressure is done by a trained therapist who applies physical pressure to each point instead of pins.

The Tenets of Acupressure

The belief system behind acupressure is the same as that behind acupuncture and TCM. The theory, which predates modern medicine and goes back thousands of years, places emphasis on the body’s qi, its natural energy system.

According to this belief system, all of the human body rests in a very specific balance of qi, or yin and yang, the 14 primary energy channels in the body. When energy levels in the body are displaced, it can result in pain or other medical symptoms not necessarily affiliated with the corresponding part of the body where that qi resides.

From a modern medical standpoint, the practice of acupuncture and acupressure are not fully understood. The existence of qi is contested by many medical professionals; however, the benefits of TCM have been felt for thousands of years without a need for medical intervention at all.

Some medical and scientific experts believe that TCM works by tapping into muscular “trigger points,” or areas where localized pain is actually caused by a tightened muscle or damage somewhere else on the body. Only by working the damaged area can pain in other parts of the body be alleviated.

Anyone who wishes to consider acupressure as an alternative to other forms of health care should do so with medical approval, but with the understanding that most modern doctors will not be fully on board with the idea.

The Acupressure Session

Most acupressure sessions occur in very low-key situations. The primary focus is on the hands, feet, and spine, so you may be situated in either a chair or on a massage table, depending on where your pain resides. Some of the primary complaints that are treated by acupressure include:

  • Headaches
  • Neck or back pain
  • Arthritis
  • Muscle pains (anywhere in the body)
  • Stress and tension

More specialized treatments are also believed to be beneficial for:

  • Sinus problems
  • Ulcer pains
  • Menstrual cramps
  • Digestive issues

Many acupressure practitioners will go beyond providing treatment to providing self-treatment options. Conditions that are treated in the feet and hands are particularly effective as self-remedies, since these parts of the body are easily accessible when attempting acupressure on your own.

Acupressure Tools

Everyday acupressure treatments are more prevalent than most people assume. For example, some over-the-counter “cures” for motion sickness or seasickness include wristbands. In reality, these bands place pressure at a focal point on the wrist (the P6 acupuncture point) believed to relive symptoms related to nausea.

In addition to the wrist bands, there a variety of other acupressure tools Although all of them rely on tapping into the body’s qi and various pressure points, the instrument used may differ depending on the therapist.

  • Acuball: Some therapists use a small rubber ball, that is both heatable and covered with small bumps. Known as the “acuball,” this is used primarily to reduce joint and muscle pain. Many of these types of balls are packaged and sold as tension relievers or massage tools to be used at home.
  • Energy Roller: A mechanism known as the energy roller is a small cylinder with similar bumps as those found on the acuball. Certain types have been developed for specific use on the feet, the hand, and other parts of the body, particularly the spine.
  • Power Mat (Pyramid Mat): The power mat requires the client to walk on a mat covered in bumps. It doesn’t target specific points in the feet; rather, it allows for alleviation of trigger points on the foot as a whole.
  • Teishein: The Teishein is an acupuncture needle that does not pierce the skin. Instead, it is used by the therapist to apply strong, swift pressure repeatedly to a specific point.

How to Find an Acupressure Practitioner

Like many forms of alternative medicine, there is no ruling body that determines who can or cannot practice acupressure. However, those with training in Traditional Chinese Medicine as well as those who are licensed acupuncturists tend to be more well-versed in the benefits and application of acupressure.

Acupressure is largely considered a treatment for minor complaints, and should not be used to the exclusion of more modern medical options. If you would like to tap into some of the benefits of this ancient practice, it’s best to find a holistic provider who supports a combination of Eastern and Western medical techniques.




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  1. JOE GARZA says:


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