What is Tui na Chinese Massage?

Tui na is one of the four main branches of traditional Chinese medicine, the others being acupuncture, Qi Gong, and Chinese herbal medicine. It is based on the Chinese medical principle that pain and illness are symptoms of a blockage or imbalance of Qi, the body’s vital energy. Tui na therapists work to encourage the free-flow of Qi and balance yin and yang within the body.

Tui na is not new-age. Although it is a relatively recent introduction to the UK, Tui na has been practiced and studied for thousands of years. In China, many doctors specialise in Tui na and hospitals have dedicated Tui na departments.

Tui na is both a physical therapy and a form of energetic medicine. Depending on the condition being treated and the practitioner’s background, the style of a Tui na treatment can vary from a vigorous deep-tissue style massage, to a subtle energetic treatment not unlike Reiki or Cranio-sacral therapy. RTCM members are trained to use manual manipulation and Qi Gong techniques to stimulate the body’s web-like meridian system and encourage the smooth flow of Qi around the body.

Tui na is more than just massage. Tui na practitioners are skilled at both manipulating joints and muscles to relieve musculoskeletal pain and stiffness like arthritis and sciatica and directing the flow of Qi within the body to treat deeper seated conditions like depression and insomnia. It effectively relieves many common health conditions, especially when combined with acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine.

Tui na is suitable for all ages. Everyone can enjoy the benefits of a Tui na massage at any stage in life, from infancy through to old age. However, infantile Tui na differs from adult Tui na as the meridian system in babies is not yet fully developed. Some practitioners specialise in treating children up to the age of 5-6 years old.

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