I have been practicing Traditional Chinese Medicine Acupressure since February of 2018, and I am continually amazed by how potent this modality can be. Within Acupressure, there are dozens of acu-point formulas we can choose from. Some benefit individual meridians – the Liver formula for instance. While other formulas benefit certain body parts – the upper back formula in this case. And there are four formulas that work with the Extraordinary Meridians. Today I will discuss the benefits of using the Regulator Formula – which includes both the Yin and Yang Regulator Channels (also known as Yin Wei Mai and Yang Wei Mai in Chinese).
Let’s unpack what I just said. The Yin and Yang Regulators are two of the Eight Extraordinary Meridians or Curious Flows in the body. The Extraordinary Meridians are the deeper energy wells or reservoirs from which the 12 Principle Meridians draw energy when in need or into which they can drain off their excess energy. These potent energy channels (the Extraordinary Vessels) form first in the womb – in utero, and it is important that they stay vital and robust.
When I take a client’s acupuncture pulses (in the wrist – we can read the pulses, six of the Principle Meridians on the left and six on the right), if I feel that they have some Meridians that are strong or excessive while others are weak or depleted, then the Regulator Formula is what I think of first.
Why is that? Because this is apart of its function – to regulate all the Yin meridians (in the case of the Yin Regulator) or all the Yang meridians in the case of the Yang Regulator. If a Yin meridian is too full, the Yin Regulator can take some excess Chi; if too weak or depleted, the Yin Regulator can give some Chi to strengthen or tonify it. The Liver, Heart, Kidney, Spleen, Pericardium and Lungs are all Yin meridians. The Gall Bladder, Small Intestine, Bladder, Stomach, Triple Burner and Large Intestine are the Principle Yang meridians.
Let’s say I feel that they have excessive Chi in the Metal element (Lungs and Large Intestine), depleted Earth element, depleted ministerial Fire element (Pericardium and Triple Burner) and strong or excessive pulses for the rest of their meridians, then the Regulator formula is probably going to benefit them.
Of course, if their symptoms are pointing directly at another formula – for instance if they are having trouble with mental clarity or decision making, along with having strong irritability, connective tissue problems and/or possibly even some eye issues, then I would first look to work with the Liver / Gall Bladder. All of these issues that I mention are Wood Element issues.
But if a client has a number of symptoms or issues that correlate with several different organ systems, then working with the Extraordinary Meridians is a great place to start! Then we have to narrow it down – because there are basically four paired Vessels (four Yin and four Yang) when it comes to the Extraordinary Meridians. In general though, when I take someone’s pulses and they come back up and down – excessive and depleted – then I want to look at the Regulator Formula or possibly the Bridge Formula (also known as the Connector or Motility Channels).
And when I do acupressure with clients who have done a good deal of personal growth work – they have come down out of their heads somewhat, shifted to be in their bodies and they are more sensitive to energy work – I love how fast they typically respond to the Regulator Formula. In half a dozen clients now, I have gotten their pulse readings initially, prior to doing any acupressure. Then we do the 48 minute Regular Formula – and if there is time – we might do a centering formula or a short formula like the Pericardium. Then at the end, we take their pulses again to see if anything has changed.
Keep in mind that the acupuncture pulses are a window into where those meridians / organs are currently at. If they have significant depletion, whether from chronic stress, or poor diet, or chronic insomnia, etc, then you might not think you can make a significant change in just 50 minutes. But with some clients, it happens! It is amazing! Maybe they started with a strong / excessive Lung / Large Intestine (Metal Element) meridian pulse, and maybe the Spleen / Stomach (Earth element) meridians were very weak or depleted, occasionally, after just one session of acupressure, the Metal meridians come down (are sedated) and the Earth meridians come up (are tonified). So they are both more harmonious.
Sometimes, due to any number of reasons, someone will have depleted Pericardium and Kidney meridian pulses. I find these are the most challenging meridians (especially when they are both depleted) to bring up (tonify) in one session. I usually chat with these clients about lifestyle choices, dietary needs and tools to work with stress / self care as a way for them to start building resilience. In these cases, it might take more like three to seven sessions to have their Kidney / Pericardium meridian pulses feel normal again.
With that said, it is still amazing that we can shift our body back toward harmony in just one or a few sessions. I love working with Acupressure and I have even done some long distance sessions – working with Chi is mainly working with intention. In-person sessions might be best, but I have learned to send Chi over long distance when appropriate.
Thank you for reading!
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