Are you wondering how to use Marma Points for pain relief? Keep reading for a guide on how Marma Points work and how they can help you manage your pain.
In Ayurvedic healing, Marma points serve to map the human body, linking various limbs, organs, immune response, and emotions to specific energy points. As energy can sometimes stagnate in these marma points, Ayurveda utilises these marma points to free any trapped energy, whether through acupressure or Ayurvedic massage.
Marma points can be compared to acupuncture points in Chinese Medicine – and can be used in Ayurveda massage to help relive pain and relax parts of the body.
The focus of a Marma Point massage
The focus of a marma point massage is primarily to manipulate energy, relieve stiff muscles and boost circulation in the body. As marma therapy is used extensively in Ayurvedic practice, it’s important to know how to use marma points for pain relief and greater wellness.
Using Oil in Marma-based massage therapy
There are said to be 107 marma points on the body, which each serve a unique purpose. Much like Ayurvedic massage, different oils are used to match an individual’s doshas, so ensure that you’re aware of your body’s doshas before undertaking marma therapy!
Oils are best massaged in broad, gentle strokes with the palm of the hand, but you needn’t always visit a professional to feel the benefits of marma massage. Once you have learned about the different marma points, you can use this gentle technique of self-massage for pain relief wherever you are. As marma therapy produces analgesia by secreting prostaglandin inhibitors and endorphins, it’s a natural way to get some pain relief quickly!
So, why don’t we investigate some of the most common points and methods of massage to get you started?
Known as the point at the ‘heart of the hand’, this marma point is found at the centre of the palm. Closely linked to the heart chakra, it’s an important point to focus on for stimulating the circulatory system, improving heart and lung health increasing the flow of prana to the palms.
To relieve pain and allow for easier breathing, massage this point in a circular motion for five minutes or so and use an essential oil to stimulate your doshas. If you wish to generate more heat and feel a deeper level of relaxation, try rubbing your hands together until they feel warm after approaching the marma points.
Referring to the God Indra’s arrow, you’ll find this marma point at the centre of the calf muscle. Our calves take an unprecedented beating day-to-day, so it’s crucial to focus on this marma point everyday if you can.
In Ayurvedic therapy, this marma point is said to control the digestive system, so massaging this area with a strong, circular motion can help things move along the digestive tract with more ease and relieve any discomfort that seems to be coming from the gut.
Located at the centre of the crown, this marma point regulates prana and circulates cerebrospinal fluid. Generally, working in a circular motion across this point is an excellent way to bring balance to the body and release any toxicity that may be brewing in the body.
This marma point should be massaged to relieve neck pain. Due to its proximity to the crown of the head, it should be massaged in a similar way to the Murdhni marma, as the two are closely intertwined.
Finally, found at the sides of the nostrils, these points are crucial for maintaining sinus health and sense of smell. Using the index finger for acupressure, this point can be focused upon to relieve headaches and congestion. When an aromatherapy oil is used alongside marma therapy (such as peppermint), it can be especially effective.
I’ve got a handle on the marma points- so, what else do I need to know?
In general, when performing marma massage for pain relief, you should focus on the amount of pressure given. Generally, most points will require no longer than 1-2 minutes of focused pressure work, as much more can prove too painful for some.
In addition to this, when it comes to technique, subtlety cannot be overstated. You should only work as deep as you feel comfortable, but with time, marma points should guide you away from bodily discomfort and break up blocked energy.
Should you wish to tone, strengthen, and stimulate the internal organs, a clockwise direction of movement is recommended. In contrast, should you be looking to calm and pacify the internal organs, a counterclockwise movement should be applied. As most marma points are in typical spots (such as the temples, skull and the backs of the knees), which practice, you should be able to utilise marma points to realign the body and achieve a greater sense of peace.
Though marma therapy is best performed by a professional, with practice, you can become extremely proficient in relieving pain in a pinch when necessary by focusing on the right spots and applying adequate pressure!