different kinds of acupressure are currently practiced, although
the same ancient trigger points are used in all of them. Varying
rhythms, pressures, and techniques create different styles of
acupressure, just as different forms of music use the same notes
but combine them in distinctive ways. Shiatsu, for instance, the
most well-known style of acupressure, can be quite vigorous, with
firm pressure applied to each point for only three to five seconds.
Another kind of acupressure gently holds each point for a minute
or more. Pressing with an intermittent, fast beat is stimulating;
a slower pressure creates a deeply relaxing effect on the body.
We'll use the following
techniques in the exercises throughout the book.
is the most fundamental technique. Use thumbs, fingers, palms,
the side of the hand, or knuckles to apply steady, stationary
pressure. To relax an area or relieve pain, apply pressure gradually
and hold without any movement for several minutes at a time. One
minute of steady pressure (when applied gradually) calms and relaxes
the nervous system, promoting greater healing. To stimulate the
area, apply pressure for only four or five seconds.
kneading uses the thumbs and fingers along with the heels
of the hands to squeeze large muscle groups firmly The motion
is similar to that of kneading a large mass of dough. Simply lean
the weight of your upper body into the muscle as you press to
make it soft and pliable. This relieves general stiffness, shoulder
and neck tension, constipation, and spasms in the calf muscles.
uses friction to stimulate the blood and lymph. Rub the skin
lightly to relieve chilling, swelling, and numbness by increasing
circulation, as well as to benefit the nerves and tone of the
with fingertips stimulates muscles on unprotected, tender
areas of the body such as the face. For larger areas of the body,
such as the back or buttocks, use a loose fist. This can improve
the functioning of nerves and sluggish muscles in the area.
© Copyright 1990 Michael Reed Gach & Bantam Books,
All Rights Reserved