Acupuncture and yoga are ancient techniques that can be extremely important for your health and which go very well together. Here we want to introduce you to acupuncture in more detail. Because it has become indispensable in the field of alternative healing methods.
What is acupuncture?
Acupuncture is part of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) and has its roots in ancient China. The healing method, which has been used for more than 2000 years, continues to develop and represents a complex diagnostic and therapeutic system with a holistic approach.
By the way, Zhen Jiu, the Chinese name for acupuncture, means sting and burning. From the Latin acus = needle and punctius = stitch.
Here I want to introduce you to the various techniques and directions of acupuncture in more detail:
Traditional Chinese medicine has its roots in the natural philosophy of Taoism. The Tao, the supreme principle of nature, the world law, is described by Lao Tzu in his basic work, the “Tao Te King”. The creative primal force creates the tension field of the polarity of the forces in nature between yin and yang.
Heaven is yang, earth is yin, masculine is yang, feminine is yin. All pairs of opposites in nature are thus assigned to this dynamic Yin-Yang polarity. The original meaning of Yang, which is reflected in the ancient Chinese character, is the sunny side of the hill, while Yin symbolizes the shadowy side.
Yin and Yang complement each other in interplay in incessant processes of transformation and lead you to the harmony of wholeness. You can find out how acupuncture and yoga interact below.
There is no yin without yang
The two always complement each other to form a whole, this is called Taiqi in Chinese . This polar system is of great importance in medicine when describing the life processes in the human body and their disorders.
Because the interplay between Yin and Yang produces the life energy Qi. Health is synonymous with the free flow of the life energy Qi. The Qi flows constantly, or at least it should because every stagnation means disruption of life processes and ultimately complete standstill, death.
Cosmic Qi flows everywhere in nature, in water, in the air, in the wind. In the human body, the Qi collects in the organs and flows in channels that are called Jing and Luo in Chinese. Jing means flowing through or channel, Luo means connection.
European doctors have compared these Qi channels with the earth’s meridian system due to their polar arrangement and thus called them meridians. This flow of energy supplies all organs, body functions, the psyche, the spirit and ensures a harmonious exchange and a flowing connection of all physical and psychological processes in people. And here is the essential connection between yoga and acupuncture, because both want to bring the life energy into the right flow.
If this flow is disturbed or blocked, complaints arise. In TCM there can be an abundance or emptiness of life energy in the organ systems and meridians. Stagnation or blockage of the Qi energy in the meridians is also possible. A weakness of Qi is called a void disorder, in Chinese XU. This is a yin state and can be characterized by cold symptoms, paleness, general weakness or lack of energy. Flaccid muscles and hypofunction of the organs occur.
An abundance of Qi, called Shi in Chinese, represents a Yang state. The symptoms here can be, for example, heat symptoms, hyperfunction, tense muscles or acute pain.
What exactly does acupuncture treatment look like?
A detailed anamnesis and a precise pulse and tongue diagnosis help to create an individual treatment concept. The whole organism can then be treated by needling, heating (moxibustion) or cupping selected acupuncture points.
These therapy methods are often combined. Acupuncture is performed with a sterile disposable needle, which is pierced through the skin. The puncture is usually painless, while the needles remain in the body for 20-30 minutes if this part is painless. Depending on the disorder, the selected acupuncture points and meridians are toned or sedated and thus a calming or activating effect is achieved.
The health insurance companies often take over part of the treatment. Especially for back problems, osteoarthritis and knee problems. Partly for other clinical pictures and follow-up treatments. This must be inquired about individually with the respective health insurance company, as there are some differences here. Depending on the health insurance company and type of insurance. It is also possible to take out additional health practitioner insurance, as health practitioners’ services are usually not covered by statutory health insurances.
In order to maintain the quality, the Science Center of the German Medical Association for Acupuncture regularly creates and presents an overview of current scientific studies on acupuncture.
These clinical pictures respond particularly well to acupuncture:
The World Health Organization (WHO) has also published a list of diseases that can be successfully treated with acupuncture:
- Bronchopulmonary diseases
- Cardiovascular diseases
- Gynecological diseases
- Neurological diseases
- Gastrointestinal diseases
- Diseases of the musculoskeletal system
- Mental and psychosomatic disorders and addictions
- Urological diseases
- Skin disorders
Acupuncture treatment rarely has side effects, there may be redness or slight bleeding at the injection site and bruises only occasionally. In rare cases, it can worsen for the first time, and brief circulatory reactions can also occur during acupuncture treatment, but normalize quickly.
To avoid infection, sterile single-use needles made of stainless steel are used. Acupuncture should only be performed by well-trained doctors and naturopaths.
Why acupuncture and yoga go so well together:
Yoga and acupuncture complement each other in a wonderful way via the modification of acupuncture, acupressure.
This is a very exciting part of traditional Chinese medicine is acupressure. (Acus = needle premere = press)
Often known as acupuncture massage. In this healing process, certain points on the human body are stimulated by applying pressure with the thumb, ball of the hand, elbow, and occasionally with the knee or foot. The self-healing powers are activated, symptoms can be alleviated and the flow of energy is improved. In addition, a wonderful connection between two holistic healing systems can be created.
In recent years, Aku-Yoga has become more and more popular. Of course you don’t have needles in your body with yoga, but it combines acupressure and yoga in a new, very effective way. It is the connection of two holistic systems. Aku-Yoga is the combination of yoga and acupressure, and this combination can help more effectively than either of the two systems on its own.
What is special about it is that both the exercises of yoga (meditation, pranayama, and asana) and the pressure stimulation of specific areas of the body help us to release blockages in the body’s energy flow and to feel better in the short and long term. Because the additional stimulation of individual acupressure points in the yoga asana activates specific meridians and ensures a good chi/prana flow. This balances the body’s energy. Different point sequences that are held in the asana influence both the organ as well as the regulatory meridians and quickly and comprehensively relieve internal tension and physical discomfort.
In this form of yoga, you hold acupressure points during asanas, pranayama, and meditation in order to deepen and strengthen the effect of the yoga practice.