What is Tui Na?

Tui Na Massage (aka Chinese medical massage) is the most tried and tested massage therapy in the world. It is an Ancient Chinese healing art that employs the use of the hands to push on key points on the surface of your body.  When these points are stimulated they release tension, increase circulation and improve the body’s own natural healing process.

Tuina (/ˌtwiː ˈnɑː/, Chinese: 推拿; pinyin: tuī ná),  is translated as Tui ‘Push’ and Na ‘Grasp’.  Over the last few centuries, this form of physical manipulation has taken over the role of  Osteopathy, Physiotherapy in China.  As of 2010 TuiNa has now been recognised in China as a distinct medical system in its own right.

This Chinese massage is a hands-on body treatment that uses Chinese Taoist and martial arts principles in an effort to bring the eight principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) into balance. See Google Translate)

Chinese medical massage was called ‘An Mo’ or massage in ancient times. The term for this form of therapeutic massage was first seen during the Ming Dynasty.

Tui Na has become very advanced and is used in many of the hospitals in China today to treat complaints that are often not addressed in the West until they become chronic, usually many days after first becoming evident.

What is Medical Massage Used For?

Tui Na is used to treat chronic pain, most often pain caused by muscle-skeletal injuries or conditions. Neck, shoulder and back pain and immobility, sciatica and ‘tennis elbow’ have all been shown to respond very well.

It is, however, not possible to treat a specific condition with Tui Na without first improving the overall Qi status of the body.

Doing so means that headaches, migraines, IBS, constipation, PMS and a whole range of emotional problems can also be treated

Tui Na (pronounced ‘twee-nah’) massage is a complete healing system, like acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine. These three forms of therapy are the main components of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM).

Tui Na is probably the oldest system of bodywork still practised and its popularity continues to grow today.

How is the Tui Na massage done?

Chinese Therapeutic Massage uses finger pressure, stretching and leverage to stimulate the channels and acupuncture points. It is often used in conjunction with acupuncture and is not only effective treatment for musculoskeletal problems, such as lower back pain, frozen shoulder, slipped discs and fractures, but can also be effective for many other conditions, particularly digestive problems and insomnia.

Please do not consider this as just a form of massage for relaxation (although you may indeed feel relaxed after a session) – We use Chinese medical massage to treat and cure numerous conditions, often in conjunction with acupuncture treatment or Chinese herbs.

Chinese Medical Massage Techniques Video


Tui Na rectifies anatomical abnormalities of both inner and outer surfaces by altering the energy level of the biological system and adjusts the bio-information of the body

A Tuina practitioner can stimulate many points during a single treatment, and dredge many channels/meridians compared to acupuncture, as 400 needles may be too excessive for the patient to handle at any one time.

Tuina also has the ability to work on the local muscle near the trauma. This massage can break down adhesions and scar tissue at the local level to increase the flow of blood, nutrients and oxygen (chi) to carry away damaged tissue.

  • Sometimes called trauma therapy this massage breaks down scar tissue to relax muscles and tendons and creates the road for the blood and Qi to circulate in a proper way by removing blood stasis, and of course, most importantly, speeding up the healing process
  • Tui Na helps to treat many disorders from soft tissue injuries to many other kinds of ailments such as:
    • stiff neck and distension of shoulders
    • frozen shoulder
    • sore back
    • sciatica
    • aching muscles
    • diarrhoea
    • constipation
    • low energy
    • symptoms that are caused by stress or emotional problems, such as, insomnia, difficulty focusing, headache, tensions headaches

Tui Na massage for specific health problems is based on a full Traditional Chinese Medicine case history taking using proper examinations to identify a complaint, any underlying pattern and treatment principles. This full logical analysis is what gives Tui Na its power and raises it above other systems of massage. Based on the treatment principles, specific techniques are combined to treat the presenting complaint and underlying pattern.

Please be aware that Chinese Medical Massage is not for all and we will advise you if you would benefit from this form of treatment. Often we use Tuina in addition to acupuncture.

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