Working like acupuncture without needles, this therapy aims to balance the body’s energy flow. Acupressure is similar to shiatsu in that is involves applying pressure to key points on the body’s energy system. It is based on the same theory of traditional Chinese medicine as acupuncture, which claims good health is maintained by regulating the flow of energy through invisible channels in the body called meridians.
Practitioners use mostly fingers and thumbs to apply pressure to the same points used by acupuncturists. Often acupressure is not practised as a separate discipline, but is used to complement acupuncture or incorporated into traditional Chinese massage, which is called tuina. Acupuncturists may also teach patients some acupressure techniques to use at home.