The world-wide reknown acupuncture is treating trigger points which are positioned on so-called „Leitbahnen“, channels or meridians. They build a network-like structure which is spread all over the body. They are defined by points which have a similar functionality and they are connected to lines going along the body surface.
According to TCM a kind of life enrgy –called QI– is flowing along these lines.A harmonical flow of Qi is equivalent with health. From this derives the theory that the flow of Qi is essential for health.
The system of meridians is structured in the following groups:
The twelve main meridians
They are the fundamental meridians and are so-to-speak the sceleton of the entire system. They are decribed according to the organs but cannot be equated with them. Instead of being correlated to a single organ they are rather connected with a group of body functions.
The twelve meridian branches
These meridians are connected with the twelve main meridians. They are branches which are pervading most of the body.
The eight unpaired meridians
These meridians fulfill a different scope. They are not equated with a certain functionality but are like a valve for regulation purposes. In the classical use meridians are compared with rivers. The unpaired meridians are lakes or channels which are good for regulating the rivers.
The fifteen net-meridians
They serve for making connection between other meridians. Thus a network-like shortcut is created. Their task is management and control of the flow of Qi.
The twelve muscle meridians
There are certain important points and one of them is the so-called fountain-point. The muscle meridians derive from this point. From there they draw along up to the head or into the muscle meat of the body. They support the main meridians in circulation of Qi and blood.
Triggers of diseases
TCM regards inner and outer factors as triggers for diseases. Inner factors can be emotional or social reasons for a disease. Outer factors can be climate and nutrition. By one or more of these factors a disorder or blockade of the flow of Qi can result.
Is the Qi disturbed, then diseases can result. According to TCM harmful Qi can enter the meridians as soon as the flow of Qi is no longer fully guaranteed. For this reason it is important to diagnose a disorder of meridian system as soon as possible and systematically.
How can meridians be treated?
The best known methods to treat damaged or blocked meridians are acupuncture and acupressure. Certain points are stimulated by needles or certain massage techniques. Further than that there are other treatment techniques. Learn more in our post about methods of TCM.
If you are interested I can recommend you our beginner class of TCM (see TCM/Akupunktur basic level). Of course in this course the system of meridians is explained in detail.