Winter channels for gua sha facial fusion, EIM body + facial gua sha services
Winter is a time for rest and conserving energy, a time for reflection and thoughtfulness.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) there are 5 elements:
Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal and Water. Each element relates to a season with our current season Winter being connected to the Water Element.
Each element is also connected to two physcial organs, with the Kidneys and Bladder being the Winter season and Water element organs.
Where are the Bladder and Kidney channels located and how do I work with them in my services?
We could go down the rabbit hole with the details of each element and channel because there are so many layers in TCM. My intention when working with the seasonal channels in gua sha facial fusion, shiatsu techniques, EIM body and facial Gua Sha are to promote vitality, seasonal wellness and balance, to stimulate the flow of Qi throughout the body and to offer clients the sensory experience that happens with rhythmic finger or palm pressure on a channel, or with scraping from a gua sha tool on the body, or the deep relaxation that can be achieved with facial and foot points using a tool or my fingertips.
The Bladder Channel (YANG) begins at the inner corner of the eye, rises up over the forehead and skull and occiput where it splits into two branches that descend and run parallel with the spine. It continues down to the sacrum and glutes to the thigh, the center of the calf and ends on the outer tip of the small toe.
The Kidney Channel (YIN) begins in the center of the sole of the foot (bubbling springs, solar plexus), up the inner ankle, lower leg and thigh, to the pelvis and abdomen, along the sternum and ends at the inferior border of the clavicle.
If we begin your service with your body face down, I have intention with working the Bladder channel on the top and back of the head and occiput, down the back musculature along the spine with the gua sha spoon. I use forearm, elbow and palm pressure along the sacrum, glutes and hamstrings and reconnect with the gua sha spoon, palm work and finger pressure on the calf and lateral foot until I reach the small toe.
I also access the Kidney channel while you are face down using finger pressure on the begining point located on the bottom of the foot, traveling up the inner ankle, the medial gastrocnemius and along the medial hamstring. The direction of my work corresponds with the direction of the channel: Yang head to toe, Yin toe to head.
When you are face up during the service, I access the Bladder channel at its begining points on the face with the gua sha spoon or a sculpting spoon. Working from the inner eye, up over the forehead and the top of the head to the occiput and back of the neck. I access the Kidney channel along the sternum and at it's ending point just below the clavicles during upper chest and pec work.
I love the intention and focus with channels during the service and blending this work with my integrated massage techniques for a service that is unique to the season and complete for the client.
One of my favorite visual resources for viewing the channels on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CFrJ11DJ-GE