Our bodies are intricately designed to maintain health and overcome illness. The body naturally seeks homeostasis both on a physical and energetic level. Electromagnetic and subtle energies give our bodies life and form the foundation of our well-being.
Chakras and meridians are two systems in which these forces are contained. The chakras form the body’s energy centers while the meridians form the body’s energy pathways. Both emit electromagnetic energy and light. The key to energy medicine is to keep these systems open and balanced so that our life force (qi) can support, shape and animate our physical body.
Both scientific research and personal experiences reveal that energy medicine has the potential to affect every aspect of our being – from healing trauma to balancing emotions. The fundamental law of energy medicine states when our energies are vibrant and balanced, so are our bodies. An increasing number of bodyworkers are enhancing their treatments by incorporating subtle energy work into their sessions. As this trend grows, it becomes more evident that these energies are intelligent, responding positively to intention and touch.
With a few well-chosen energy techniques, bodyworkers and their clients can maintain their vitality and reverse an illness at its onset. In her book, Energy Medicine, Donna Eden offers five useful tips for maintaining your energy systems and nipping an oncoming illness in the bud. The first four techniques can be performed on yourself for daily maintenance, while the last technique requires a partner’s assistance.
1. Separating Heaven and Earth
Rationale: This exercise opens the meridians, expels toxic and stagnant energies and stimulates fresh energy to flow through the meridians and joints. Do this exercise when you start to feel sick. If you do healing work, it moves out any energy you may have picked up from a client and helps to center restorative energy in the lower abdomen.
- Stand erect with hands on the thighs, fingers spread.
- Take a deep inhalation through the nose, circle arms out and bring hands together in the prayer position at the heart. Exhale through the mouth.
- Take a deep inhalation through the nose, while separating the hands: one arm stretches straight above the head with the palm facing up toward heaven; the other arm stretches straight down to your side with the palm facing toward the earth.
- Visualize that you are pushing something up to heaven and down to earth through the palms. Hold your breath in this position for as long as it is comfortable.
- Release the breath through the mouth and return the hands in the prayer position. Repeat, switching arms. Do one or more additional lifts on each side.
- Come out of this pose by bringing both arms down, allowing your body to bend at the waist. Hang there with your knees bent slightly as you take two deep breaths.
- Slowly roll up to standing position one vertebra at a time. Roll the shoulders back.
- Bring palms to cover the navel, close eyes and meditate for as long as you like.
2. The Hook Up and the Three Thumps
Rationale for the Hook Up: The Hook Up brings two major energy channels into balance: the governing channel (runs up the center of the back/spine) and the conception channel (runs down the center of the front of the body). The Hook Up strengthens the auric field, connects energies that flow from the front to the back of the body, bridging the energies that flow from the back to the front of the body.
- Place one thumb or middle finger on the forehead between the eyebrows. Place the other thumb or middle finger in the belly button.
- Pull slightly upward on the skin of both points. Close the eyes, take a deep breath, exhale and relax. Hold for about two minutes or until you sigh or take a deep breath naturally.
Rationale for the Three Thumps: Tapping specific points on the body will affect the energy field by sending electrochemical impulses to the brain and releasing neurotransmitters. The Three Thumps address fatigue, increase vitality and keep the immune system strong in the midst of stress. The specific locations for thumping are: Kidney 27, the thymus gland and the neurolymphatic reflex points for the spleen.
Thump Kidney 27 Points: boost energies in all meridian and increase concentration. Kidney 27 is the last point on the kidney meridian and its stimulation is indicated for adrenal exhaustion.
- Place fingers on the clavicle and slide them toward the center. Find the bumps where they end, drop down about one inch and move slightly outward approximately one inch. There is a slight indentation on these points.
- With palms facing these points, cross hands over one another. Rest the middle finger on these points.
- Tap and/or massage these points firmly while breathing deeply — in through the nose, out through the mouth. Continue for about 20 seconds or 25-30 taps.
- Boost the effects of thumping Kidney 27 by hooking the middle finger of one hand in the navel and resting the fingers of the other hand on the Kidney 27 points. Pull upward with the navel and hold for two or three deep breaths.
Thump the Thymus Gland: stimulate all energies, boost immune system and increase strength and vitality.
- Move fingers down about two inches from Kidney 27 points and into the center of your sternum.
- Breathe deeply while tapping the thymus point with the four fingers of each hand for about 20 seconds or 25-30 taps.
Thump the Spleen Neurolymphatic Reflex Points: lift energy, balance blood chemistry and strengthen the immune system (remove toxins, fight infection).
- Find these points by moving fingers down from the thymus, out at the level of the nipples and straight down to beneath your breasts. Then move them down over the next rib, just below the breasts.
- Tap firmly with several fingers for about 20 seconds or 25-30 taps. Breathe deeply in through the nose and out through the mouth.
3. Massaging Neurolymphatic Reflex Points for Each Season
Rational: Each organ has corresponding neurolymphatic reflex points. Massage re-energizes these points by removing toxins from the muscles. Blood, lymph and the corresponding meridians are stimulated.
Neurolymphatic Reflex Points for Fall Immunity: work the lung and large intestine points to boost immunity during fall.
- The Lung Reflex Points: Front lung points are located in the second, third, and fourth intercostal spaces close to the sternum; back lung points are located between the second, third and fourth transverse processes of the spine. Place the fingertips in the intercostal spaces lateral to the sternum and massage briskly for about 15-30 seconds. For the back, use two tennis balls side-by-side on the floor; lay down with the tennis balls just under the fourth transverse process, then roll back and forth covering the reflex points along the spine.
- The Large Intestine Points: Points are located from the transverse processes of the second, third and fourth lumbar vertebrae to the crest of the ilium. Locate these points and use your fingertips to massage the triangular area for about 15-20 seconds.
4. The Crown Pull
Rationale: Energy naturally accumulates at the top of the head. When this energy does not exit out the crown, it becomes stagnant, often causing headaches and mental fatigue. The crown is the gateway to the higher energies of heaven. This exercise opens the crown chakra, releasing mental congestion and refreshing the mind.
To Open the Forehead:
- Place thumbs at the temples. Place fingertips on the forehead just above the center of the eyebrows.
- Slowly and with some pressure, pull fingers apart, stretching the skin. Breathe deeply in through the nose and out through the mouth.
- Place fingertips at the center of the forehead and repeat the stretch. Breathe.
- Rest fingertips along the hairline above the forehead. Stretch laterally with the fingers. Breathe.
- Repeat each of the stretches one or two more times.
To Open The Crown:
- Place fingertips about two inches down from the center of the crown. Slowly and with pressure, pull down. Breathe deeply in through the nose and out through the mouth.
- Place fingertips at the center of the crown and pull them apart. Breathe.
- Place fingertips about two inches down from the center of the back of the crown. Slowly, pull apart with the fingers. Breathe.
- Place fingertips at the center of the back of the crown and pull apart. Breathe.
- Repeat each of these stretches one or two more times.
5. The Spinal Flush
Rationale: The spinal flush works with the lymphatic system, the cerebrospinal fluid system and the reflex points along the bladder meridian. Reflex points on the bladder meridian correspond to every organ in the body. This technique is great for anyone under intense emotional or physical stress. It is best performed with a partner, but if in the absence of a partner, use tennis balls along either side of the spine to work small sections of the back at a time. The points are located from the base of the neck, at about C7, to the bottom of the sacrum, between the transverse processes of the spine. Perform this exercise three times, once for the lymphatic system, once for the cranial-sacral system and once for the organs.
- Lie prone on a massage table. Have your partner begin at the base of your neck, C7, and massage the points between the transverse process of the spine using the thumbs. Apply strong pressure using your own body weight.
- Work each point for about five seconds by moving the skin up and down or in a circular motion.
- At the sacrum, massage the entire area. Repeat the massage.
- To close, sweep the energies using the flat of the hands, moving from the tops of the shoulders down and off the feet. Repeat once or twice.
The key to performing these exercises is to use your intention to move the energy. The energy follows the mind. Visualizing the energy moving coupled with your intention help you feel the effects of these exercises. When working on a client with any of these techniques, help them to visualize and hold their intention of moving the energy in their own body.
Energy techniques can be used by anyone, anywhere and at anytime. They are easy to use, inexpensive, don’t require complex equipment or instrumentation and have no known adverse effects. Using these tips on a regular basis can be truly healing. Share them with those you love.
Chaitow, Leon. Modern Neuromuscular Techniques, Churchill Livingstone, 1996.
Eden, Donna. Energy Medicine, Penguin Putnam, Inc., NY, 1998.
Osborn, Karrie. “Energy Medicine, A Field of Potential,” in Massage and Bodywork, August/September, 2005.