Tuina: the healing power of the hands

Maybe it's up to the 17, 000 sensitive bodies on the hands, which can absorb all sorts of stimuli - be it the slightest temperature differences, vibrations or movements - that ascribes hands a beneficial or even healing power. The German philosopher Immanuel Kant also described the hand as the "visible part of the brain". Tuina is a therapy concept of Traditional Chinese Medicine that works exclusively with the hands and is as common as acupuncture.

Tuina is more than just massage

Good massages cause most people relaxation and well-being. The Tuina (also known as Tui Na) massage - known to many as the acupressure massage - differs from Western massage in that it focuses on the meridian system and acupuncture points. The focus is on the mobilization of qi and the harmonization of yin and yang.

The term Qi, synonymous with Ch'i, means energy, breath or temperament or strength, depending on which Far Eastern philosophy it is taken from in German. Above all, we understand this to be life-force - the strength that disappears again and again through illness, professional and family stress. The goal of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is to restore Qi to its natural, balanced state in the body.

Tuina therapy includes elements of connective tissue massage, reflexology, periostic massage (a special form of reflexology), acupressure and chiropractic.

Pressing, pressing, kneading

Selective pressing, pressing, kneading and grasping with the hands are the basic techniques of Tuina. The Chinese have here the two terms "Tui fa" ("push") and "Na fa" ("grab") united in one word. Through joint mobilizations, strokes, kneading, rotations and pressure, the energy channels (meridians, where Qi flows) and acupuncture points are stimulated to stop or relieve musculoskeletal pain. Around 300 different grip techniques are used.

Traditionally, the Tui Na is given through the clothes. Sometimes the skin is covered by a linen cloth. Exceptions are abdominal massage in adults and tuina for children who are exercised directly on the skin. Chinese sources say the acupressure needs to be gentle and soft, yet deep and penetrating. The strokes must be applied rhythmically and consistently. The controlled application of very deep, moving pressure is the basis of a Tuina massage.

A Tuina masseur needs just as much time to treat a tense shoulder as a Western masseur for a full body treatment. The single treatment lasts 15-30 minutes. However, long-term success is only expected to bring a whole cycle of up to ten sessions. A massage costs between 30 and 60 € for half an hour. The health insurance companies are currently only in exceptional cases, the cost of Tuina therapy, in any case, one should consult his health insurance.

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