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Why Are You Doing That Point? Lung 7

By Sara Calabro

You’re going to want to pay attention to this edition of Why Are You Doing That Point?, an ongoing series that explains popular acupuncture points.

It’s late January, and many people around you—and maybe you as well—are getting sick. It is prime time for catching and spreading colds and flus. Now more than ever, your immune system can use a little extra love. And I’ve got just the acupuncture point for you.

Lung 7—also known as Lieque (Chinese name), Broken Sequence (English translation) and LU7 (acupuncturist lingo)—is located on the thumb-side edge of your wrist.

To find Lung 7, make a thumbs-up sign. When you do that, you’ll see a depression at the base of your thumb (referred to as the anatomical snuffbox). From that depression, Lung 7 is located approximately two finger widths up your arm. Slowly glide your finger up until you feel a slight depression between two tendons (see picture below). That’s Lung 7. Keep reading

Why Are You Doing That Point? Spleen 4

By Sara Calabro

Why Are You Doing That Point? is back by popular demand! It’s been a while. This edition will focus on an acupuncture point on the all-important Spleen channel.

I say all-important because the Spleen does a lot. It plays a critical role in our ability to digest food, which ultimately affects many other processes throughout the body—without nourishment, all systems suffer. In this way, the Spleen has a hand in everything, and Spleen 4 is one of the most commonly used points along the channel.

Spleen 4—also known as Grandfather Grandson (English name), Gongsun (Chinese translation), and SP4 (acupuncturist lingo)—is located on the inside of the foot.

Find it by running your thumb along the edge of the first metatarsal bone. Spleen 4 is about one inch above where the foot juts out, the place where most people get bunions (see photo below and click to enlarge). If you’re in the right spot, you should feel a slight depression at the base of the bone, and the point may be quite sensitive. Keep reading

Why Are You Doing That Point? Kidney 6

By Sara Calabro

This edition of Why Are You Doing That Point?, like the last one, will focus on a point on the Kidney channel.

Kidney 6—also known as Shining Sea (English name), Zhaohai (Chinese translation), and KD6 (acupuncturist lingo)—is located on the inner ankle.

Find it by locating the high point of your medial malleolous, the prominent bone on the inside of your ankle. Drop your finger to directly below the malleolous and you’ll feel a little dip between two tendons. That is Kidney 6 (see picture below). If you don’t feel the dip, try flexing your foot slightly.

Kidney 6, in addition to being an effective point for resolving a host of issues—literally, from head to toe—serves as a reminder of how acupuncture’s greatness lies in its subtlety. Keep reading

Why Are You Doing That Point? Kidney 1

By Sara Calabro

The Why Are You Doing That Point? series is back with a lesser used but very valuable acupuncture point: Kidney 1.

Kidney 1—also known as Gushing Spring (English name), Yongquan (Chinese translation), and KD1 (acupuncturist lingo)—is located on the bottom of the foot (see picture below).

Kidney 1 is the only acupuncture point on the bottom of the foot. Since some people are freaked out at the thought of taking a needle there, many acupuncturists stay clear of needling Kidney 1.

However, Kidney 1 hurts much less than you’d expect—often, there’s no sensation at all—especially when it’s needled by a skilled acupuncturist.

Acupuncturists commonly use Kidney 1 as an acupressure point, at either the beginning or end of a treatment, to help ground a person’s energy (more on this below). You can do this yourself. Because it’s on the bottom of the foot, Kidney 1 is an easily accessible point for performing self-acupressure. Keep reading

Why Are You Doing That Point? Gall Bladder 34

By Sara Calabro

The “Why Are You Doing That Point?” series is back, this time with an easily accessible and broadly useful acupuncture point on the lower leg.

Gall Bladder 34—also known as Yanglingquan (Chinese name), Yang Mound Spring (English translation) and GB34 (acupuncturist lingo)—is located just below the knee on the lateral (pinkie toe) side of the leg (see picture below).

You can find this point by running your finger up the outside of your leg until you hit a bony prominence. That’s the head of your fibula bone, and Gall Bladder 34 is located just slightly in front of and below where the bone juts out.

You can press this point yourself to alleviate stiff muscles, tightness along the side of the body, and to assist your Liver Qi in chilling out. Here’s why acupuncturists so often reach for Gall Bladder 34. Keep reading

Why Are You Doing That Point? Large Intestine 11

By Sara Calabro

This installment of “Why Are You Doing That Point?” will focus on Large Intestine 11. The point is considered one of the most vital acupuncture points throughout the body due to its wide range of indications.

Large Intestine 11—also known as Quchi (Chinese name), Pool at the Crook (English translation) and LI11 (acupuncturist lingo)—is located at the lateral (thumb side) edge of the elbow crease (see picture below). Keep reading

Why Are You Doing That Point? Pericardium 6

By Sara Calabro

This edition of “Why Are You Doing That Point?”, an ongoing series that explains popular acupuncture points, will look at Pericardium 6.

Pericardium 6—also known as Neiguan (Chinese name), Inner Pass (English translation) and PC6 or just P6 (acupuncturist lingo)—is located on the inside of the wrist. It’s roughly two finger breadths up from the wrist crease, between the palmaris longus and flexor carpi radialis tendons (see picture below). Keep reading

‘Why Are You Doing That Point?’ Spleen 6

By Sara Calabro

Ever wonder why acupuncturists choose certain points? The AcuTake “Why Are You Doing That Point?” series has the answer.

So far we’ve looked at Liver 3 and Large Intestine 4, two popular acupuncture points that are frequently used together; Stomach 36, known for its energizing qualities; and Governing Vessel 20, a conversation-starter located on the top of the head.

This time we’re looking at a very widely used point called Spleen 6.

Spleen 6—also known as Sanyinjiao (Chinese name), Three Yin Intersection (English translation) and SP6 (acupuncturist lingo)—is located on the inside of the lower leg. Keep reading

‘Why Are You Doing That Point?’ Governing Vessel 20

By Sara Calabro

Time for the April edition of “Why Are You Doing That Point?” This ongoing series explains the locations and common uses of popular acupuncture points.

So far we’ve looked at Liver 3 and Large Intestine 4, two acupuncture points that frequently come together in a combination called Four Gates, and Stomach 36, known for its energizing qualities.

This installment of “Why Are You Doing That Point?” will look at Governing Vessel 20.

Governing Vessel 20—also known as Baihui (Chinese name), Hundred Meetings (English translation), GV20 (acupuncturist lingo) and DU20 (alternate acupuncturist lingo)—is located on the top of the head. Keep reading