Acupressure is more than a massage -- much more.
Based on Asian medicine, acupressure heals the body through various hands-on techniques and movements, which stretch and manipulate the body depending on an individual's condition.
There are a number of energy pathways, known as meridians, that go through the body internally. They work to strengthen the functions of organs, the mind and skin, says Susan Krieger, a New York-based expert in Chinese medicine.
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The hands-on techniques can focus on where the problem is, such as the shoulders, but can also center on points that help release tension, such as the legs and feet.
By working through the energy pathways, acupressure releases endorphins in the brain. "Endorphins are responsible for the calming effect," Krieger says.
Acupressure is based on the information the body gives to the practitioner, but Krieger also says that a practitioner won't just immediately treat patients without talking to them first. A practitioner will talk to the patients, examine their face and take their pulse.
"I always talk to [patients]," she says. "I want to hear from them."
Acupressure is for people of all ages and in all stages of health.
Krieger recommends the treatment to anyone who needs to find a change and who is willing to take the time to do some healing for themselves.
"Acupressure is all about bringing balance to body and mind," Krieger says.
Acupressure can help:
Back, neck and shoulder pain
Facial lines and wrinkles
Follow Mary Ann Georgantopoulos on Twitter @marygeorgant