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Tui-Na vs Western Massage Therapy

February 4th 2022

BlueWhite Health provides Acupuncture, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Reflexology, Auricular points and cupping services in Kamloops. You may be familiar with Western massage techniques such as deep tissue massage, sports massage, and relaxation massage. However, are you familiar with Tui-Na Massage Therapy? Tui-Na Massage is a form of Chinese manipulative therapy often used in conjunction with acupuncture, fire cupping, and Chinese herbalism. In the past, BlueWhite Health provided this therapy for children and adults at our clinic in Kamloops in order to help clients reduce pain, alleviate stress and manage other disorders. Although we don't offer this service anymore, we're happy to share our experience and knowledge to answer this frequently asked question.

While there are benefits to both Western-type massage therapies and Eastern types, and much crossover between the two, the main difference is that Western massage therapies tend to focus mainly on the muscle groups while Eastern massage, including Tui-Na Massage Therapy, is based on TCM Meridian Theory. Meridian Theory is the belief that there are invisible channels throughout the human body that Qi (energy) flows through, forming a network of energy that connects all parts of the body. The pathways of energy and organ systems they link provide TCM practitioners a framework to identify root causes of health issues and help with diagnosis and treatment.

Tui-Na Massage is a therapeutic treatment. This technique is beneficial in reducing the pain of neck, shoulders, hips, back, arms, thighs, legs, and ankle disorders. It is a very effective therapy for arthritis, pain, sciatica, and muscle spasms. Other benefits of this massage therapy include alleviation of stress-related disorders like insomnia, constipation, headaches and other disorders related to digestive, respiratory, and reproductive systems. In modern China, many hospitals include Tui-Na as a standard aspect of treatment, with specialization for infants, adults, orthopedics, traumatology, cosmetology, rehabilitation, and sports injury. Along with pain management, TCM strengthens the immune system and helps the body deal with digestive disorders, low energy levels, and stress.

In Western-based massage ideologies, massage therapy is designed as a process to stretch and loosen muscles, improve blood flow, and increase the amount of oxygen and nutrients flowing to cells and tissue.

In all instances, massage works to stimulate the release of endorphins, a natural pain killer. It also alleviates stress and can reduce anxiety levels. Worldwide, belief in the benefits of massage therapy are consistent – different parts of the world just take different approaches.

At a typical Tui-Na massage appointment, your practitioner may brush, knead, glide, roll, press, and rub the areas between each of the joints and the muscles – techniques may be gentle or quite firm. The practitioner can also use range of motion, traction, with the stimulation of acupressure points.

Here at BlueWhite Health, we don't provide tui-na massage anymore. However our other services still provide solutions including pain management, internal illness, and stress management. BlueWhite TCM practitioners are committed to creating whole body wellness and helping you live your best life. We focus on treating conditions, not just symptoms, providing effective and longer-lasting results and it is our mission to provide comprehensive care in order to restore health and balance for all our patients. Check out our services today!

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