a beginner's guide to acupressure mats

A Beginner’s Guide To Acupressure Mats

Acupressure is a simple way to heal yourself from common ailments like back pain, neck pain, headaches, nausea, fatigue, migraines, and many more. But how does it work and what is the science behind it let’s find out. This guide will also help beginners find how to use the acupressure mats and which positions benefit which part of the body?

What is Acupressure?

guide to acupressure

Acupressure is a part of Chinese medicine which is 4000-500 years old. It came from a Chinese Emperor who went on to test different sorts of healing practices like herbal medicines, acupressure, acupuncture techniques, chi gong, and more. 

All these experiments and techniques were recorded in the book called “Yellow Emperor’s Classic on Chinese medicine”.The acupressure technique is based on the pressure points that work on the meridian system. These meridians are energy pathways that flow like a river. This system is like the cardiovascular or nervous system in western medicines.

Energy flows through this system and referred to as life force. This life force energy is called Chi and all of our body parts depend on this. Our heart, digestive system brain, kidney, liver, and all body parts require Chi, the Bioelectricity.

This Chi flows through a definite pathway and can be referred to as Electrical Wiring in our body. Acupressure is a simple way to influence this energy through certain pressure points. By applying pressure on these points you can treat headaches, body ache, depression, or anxiety. 

There are 1000s of different points on your body for different things. 

What is the Scientific explanation of Acupressure?

Western medicine does not talk about or mention Energy in their books but it is a proven method for Chinese and Indian Cultures and it is a part of Ayurvedic Treatments, Chinese Medicines, and Yoga.

This ancient technique is established by studying and conducting scientific experiments on their inner self and they learned about the meridians. These 14 meridians disperse electricity through the entire body and are interdependent on each other.

Scientific experiments say that there is more conductivity on the skin at these various acupressure points. They find the electrical potential at these points to be much higher.

Acupressure Vs Acupuncture

acupressure vs acupuncture

In simple terms, in acupressure, you apply pressure to different points in the body with the help of a Throb or pointed object. This influences the energy flow to cure the ailment or heal the body part related to the point. 

Alternatively, you can describe it as a specialized kind of massage therapy with a very particular objective. Acupressure deals with every aspect of a man simultaneously like the body, mood, head, and emotions.

Acupuncture works on the same principle but it involves needles. This is a noninvasive procedure where an acupuncturist will press on several points of one’s body completely clothed to start healing.

What are Acupressure Mats?

Acupressure mats or acupuncture mats work on these specific pressure points. It is a powerful healing device developed by modern technology based on the ancient principles of acupressure.

These mats have hundreds of circular hard plastic discs, each containing around 30 spikes attached to a padded cotton mat. These spikes are designed to stimulate and promote the body’s blood flow in order to provide therapeutic benefits like pain relief.

guide to acupressure mats

These mats have hundreds of circular hard plastic discs, each containing around 30 spikes attached to a padded cotton mat. These spikes are designed to stimulate and promote the body’s blood flow in order to provide therapeutic benefits like pain relief.

What does Acupressure Mat do?

When your body is stressed it produces more stress hormones like adrenaline, noradrenaline, and cortisol. Over time this wears down the immune system making it less effective and causing a rise in blood sugar and blood pressure.

Acupressure counteracts these negative hormones by causing the body to react in a way that releases positive, healthy enhancing hormones. Everyone is different and the result of acupressure is different for everyone.

Related- How to Use Acupressure Mats-Positions, Benefits, and Side Effects

What are the Benefits of Acupressure Mats?

Here are the benefits of using Acupressure Mats:

Reduce Stress –

guide to acupressure mats

An acupressure mat will relieve your aches and pains in the body. It will work with your body to release any stress and tension. The thousands of sharp pressure points make it a very effective tool in inducing a deep state of relaxation.

Acupressure mats help your body to release endorphins and oxytocin into your bloodstream. These hormones make you feel much more relaxed and less stressed.

Pain Relief –

A decrease in local body pain including headaches, muscular or joint pain, back pain, arthritis. The endorphins released work as painkillers. Unlike traditional painkillers, relief is almost immediate. There is also evidence that acupressure can have a long-term beneficial effect on back and joint pain.

Insomnia – 

You can use it just before going to bed and it will put you in a relaxed state that will improve your sleep. In fact, many fall to sleep using one. It will help you get rid of insomnia.

Weight loss – 

Acupressure mats help release a hormone called cholecystokinin. This is a natural appetite suppressant and will reduce the amount of food you will need to eat before you feel full.

Some Other Benefits:

  • Increased metabolism and immune system.
  • Help in keeping control over blood pressure, and inflammation.
  • It also benefits asthma suffering, tissue regeneration, circulatory problems, and digestive disorders.
  • Studies have shown that using them will also help treat:  sciatica, lumbago, and frozen shoulder.

How Acupressure Mats Induces Happy Hormones?

Endorphin:

When you lie down on an acupressure mat it helps release large quantities of endorphins. Endorphin is a kind of hormone responsible for inducing an overall sense of calmness and well-being when released. Endorphins make us feel happy, relaxed, and energized. They are also called the body’s own natural pain relievers. Higher levels of endorphins increase your pain threshold and your body relaxes.

Oxytocin:

The second type of hormone that is released by the acupressure mat is Oxytocin. Oxytocin is the body’s own happy pill, it is released during sex, and when you meditate, dance, or listen to music you love. It too is a calming and feel-good hormone.

Cholecystokinin:

A third hormone that is released is Cholecystokinin. Cholecystokinin is an appetite-reducing hormone, as levels of it go up your appetite goes down. This helps you in weight loss. 

Regular use of an acupressure mat may help increase your feelings of well-being and renewal, both physically and mentally.

How to Start using an Acupressure Mat?

Acupressure follows the same principles as acupuncture. But in acupressure needles do not enter the skin. 

When you first begin to use an acupressure mat the experience can be a little uncomfortable. Until you get used to the sensations that the mat produces you can wear a cotton t-shirt or even cover the points with up to 3 sheets of white tissue paper and then removing one sheet at a time until you can rest on the mat with your bareback. 

The best way to use these mats is in the buff. You want the points to interact directly with the skin, when they do they start stimulating all kinds of things in your body.

Acupressure Mats Positions and Benefits

acupressure mat positions
Position for Upper Back and Neck

Position- 1 for Upper Back and Neck-

Lie down with your back on the mat and the pillow supporting your neck. Bend your knees keeping your feet flat on the surface.

Benefits- This position may help reduce back pain, stress and neck pain.


acupressure mat positions
Position 2- Stomach and Chest

Position- 2 for Stomach and Chest

Lie down with your stomach and chest on the mat. Cross your arms below your head and rest your head on your arms.

Benefits This position helps in post-workout recovery, enhanced digestion, and increased blood flow to respiratory muscles.


acupressure mat positions
Position 3- foot Massage

Position- 3 for Foot Massage

Place your feet on the mat while sitting on a chair or bed. You can also stand on the mat.

Benefits- This position helps relax your feet and boost energy levels. Our Whole-body points are present in the foot palm so it works for the whole body system.


acupressure mats positions
Position-4, Sitting on the Bottom

Position- 4 for Sitting on the Bottom

Sit upright on the mat and keep your legs straight or crossed.

Benefits- This position helps improve posture and the lower part of the body.


acupressure mat positions and benefits
Position 5- Lower Stomach

Position- 5 for Lower Stomach

Lay on the mat with your lower stomach, use your hands to push your upper body part away from the floor.

Benefits- This position helps relieve lower back pain and post-workout muscle recovery.


acupressure mat positions and benefits
Position 6- Sitting Sideways

Position- 6 for Sitting Sideways

Sit on the mat sideways while placing your hands on the floor below the shoulder for support.

Benefits- This position helps improve the posture and the lower back.


Position- 7 Working on a Chair

acupressure mat positions and benefits
Position 7- Sitting on Chair

This is your regular working position which most of us do for 8-10 hours a day. We can use the mat as a back rest and our whole back gets in touch with the mat.

Benefits- Helps relax our back, improve sitting posture, works as an anti-fatigue mat.


Conclusion

Acupressure mats are currently one of the most popular relaxations and self-healing tools. You will find a plethora of different brands, styles, sizes, and accessories available in the market. This guide is for beginners who want to use acupressure mats.

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