Chinese Medicine & Meridian Lines
According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, the human body is energized through specific internal paths, otherwise known as meridian lines, along which the life force, otherwise knows as chi, travels. There are twelve major meridians that run on both side of the body, mirroring one another. Each of these pairs is associated with specific organs and working with them through holistic practices such as acupuncture, massage or yin yoga are believed to have specific healing effects. This article will explore the kidney meridian and it’s relation to female reproductive health in specific.
To illustrate the meridian theory with an example, path of the heart meridian is outlined above. Here, the meridian line run three ways; from the heart down towards the small intestine, from the heart up towards the lower eyes and across the chest towards the inner armpit area and then down, towards the pinky finger through the inside of the arm. Having a clear heart meridian means optimal healing and wellbeing because the heart is seen as the ruler of the whole body as well as the health of the brain and the blood. These ideas are not so different to traditional Western understanding of how the human body works, which is why natural healthcare can compliment more conventional medicine very well!
The kidney meridian branch starts from the small toe and crosses through the middle of the sole to the inner ankle. It then travels on the inside of the leg and enters the deeper body at the base of the spine where it connects with the kidneys and continues upwards until the upper part of the chest. From an functional perspective, kidneys filter waste from the blood. They also regulate blood pressure, electrolyte balance, and red blood cell production. The kidney meridian line governs the healthy functioning of our kidneys but also, the health of our reproductive system.
Having recently been diagnosed with endometriosis, I created a gentle but healing 30-minute yin yoga practice to support my body naturally which you will find below. Yin yoga works because not only does chi flow where we hold our attention but these poses promote a healthy circulation too. My sequence gently expands the meridian area and improves the circulation of blood in the pelvic cavity. I suggest you visualize the energy travelling along the meridian path as you hold the poses, breathe fully but in a relaxed manner and stay in each poses for 3 minutes, alternating sides for the side stretch (Pose 4). Try using a meditation timer such as ‘Insight’ to assist you with the timing. As always, modify where you feel is appropriate and listen to your own intuition as to how to hold the poses to suit your body. Have a great practice!