Tuina (Tui Na), a form of Chinese therapeutic massage, is a hands-on-body treatment using acupressure whose purpose is to bring the body into balance which then allows the body to heal. Tuina's massage-like techniques range from light stroking to deep-tissue work which would be considered too vigorous or too painful for a recreational or relaxing massage. The acupuncturist may brush, knead, roll/press and rub the areas between each of the joints and in areas where scar tissue has developed, to open the body's defensive (wei) chi and get the energy moving in both the meridians and the muscles. The acupuncturist can then use range of motion, traction, massage, with the stimulation of acupressure points. Tuina treats both acute and chronic musculoskeletal conditions, including pain and decreased range of motion that may have resulted from trauma or surgery, as well as many non-musculoskeletal conditions.
- The practitioner will concentrate on specific acupressure points, energy trigger points, muscles and joints surrounding the affected area.
- Treatment sessions last from 10 minutes to over an hour.
- Patients often return for additional treatments for chronic conditions.
- The client usually feels relaxed but energized by the treatment
In ancient China, medical therapy was often classified into "external" and "internal" treatments. Tuina was one of the external methods and has been used in China for 2,000 years.
Tuina is now being popularized in this country as a powerful therapeutic extension of traditional western massage methods.Tuina's simplicity and focus on specific problems, rather than a more generalized treatment, make it both an excellent alternative and/or extension of the Swedish-style massage.
Tuina is also well suited for the treatment of specific musculoskeletal disorders and chronic stress-related disorders of the digestive, respiratory and reproductive systems. Tuina is not especially useful for those seeking a mild, sedating and relaxing massage since it tends to be more task focused than other types of bodywork. Contraindications include conditions involving fractures, phlebitis, infectious conditions, open wounds, and lesions.