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See also Alternative Medicine | Massage

I've lumped the branches of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) that include physical body systems, things other than herbal medicines (botanicals) and mental (meditation) here.

Exercise and Stretching
These techniques not only improve your physical condition but can help you relax, remove stress and improve body functions.

  • Yoga - Physical and mental exercises are designed to help achieve this goal, also called self-transcendence or enlightenment.
    On the physical level, yoga postures, called asanas, are designed to tone, strengthen, and align the body. These postures are performed to make the spine supple and healthy and to promote blood flow to all the organs, glands, and tissues, keeping all the bodily systems healthy.
    On the mental level, yoga uses breathing techniques (pranayama) and meditation (dyana) to quiet, clarify, and discipline the mind. Experts are quick to point out that yoga is not a religion.
    It consists of a variety physical poses. See YogaSpace-ct.com and YogaJournal.com
       
    Lotus | downward facing dog |   cobra   |     child's pose   |   cat pose   |   tree | video

    pigeon pose   |       plank         |     bridge   | extended side angle (hailed as a cure for many diseases).
    They also have Sanskrit Names e.g. Lotus=Padmasana, Cobra=Bhujangasana, Child's=Balasana. There are hundreds. 10 Yoga Essential Poses .See:
    How Yoga Can Wreck Your Body - NYTimes.com, Jan 2012
    Scientific Evidence for the Benefits of Yoga | Cure Talk

  • Pilates - A series of nonimpact exercises designed by Joseph Pilates in 1880 to develop strength, flexibility, balance, and inner awareness. This method strengthens and lengthens the muscles without creating bulk.
    The exercises can also be adapted for people who have limited movement or who use wheel chairs.
            more
  • Tai Chi - a Chinese exercise system that uses slow, smooth body movements to achieve a state of relaxation of both body and mind. Definition.
            Tai Chi: An Introduction | NCCAM, more
  • Qi gong - A broad range of practices, incorporating meditation, movement exercises, and breath control, whose purpose is to manipulate and develop qi, and ranging in application from the meditative systems of spiritual practitioners to medical practice to the martial arts. Definition
          more
  • Zoomba
    Zumba combines Latin and International music with a fun and effective workout system. Mostly for women. My church group wouldn't let me join because it was too suggestive.
    See Zumba.com
Pressure Point, Energy flow, ...
  • Chiropractic - Traditional chiropractic is based on subluxation theory, which says that misalignments in the spine or other skeletal structures may cause blocked and impaired nerve functions. In addition to back pain the impaired nerves can lead to a variety of conditions such as allergies, asthma, digestive problems, etc. Founder Daniel David Palmer (1845 - 1913) claimed to cure a deaf man with spinal manipulation.
  • Acupuncture - By stimulating specific points on the body, most often by inserting thin metal needles through the skin, practitioners seek to remove blockages in the flow of qi. This process is believed to adjust and alter the body's energy flow along twelve energy pathways, or meridians, in the human body that connect to specific organs in the body.
    The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends acupuncture as an effective treatment for over forty medical problems, including allergies, respiratory conditions, gastrointestinal disorders, gynecological problems, nervous conditions, and disorders of the eyes, nose and throat, and childhood illnesses, among others.
    See Chinese Medicine Body Clock: Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine
    See Organs and Channels | (AcupunctureIsEasy.com)
    Acupuncture at National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) (NCCAM.nih.gov
  • Acupressure - Traditional Chinese medicine that maintains the regular flow of bio-energy (or chi, as the Chinese refer to it) in our body.
    According to this science, the human body is divided into 14 meridians which are situated in the back and in the front. Each of the meridians, identified as either the Yin or the Yang, have specific points that link it to different glands and organs. It entails using one's fingers, the thumb, elbow, palm and blunt metal or wooden instruments for self-help.
  • Reflexology - Reflexology is a therapeutic method of relieving pain by stimulating predefined pressure points on the feet and hands.
     
  • Reiki - a form of therapy that uses simple hands-on, no-touch (or light touch), and visualization techniques, with the goal of improving the flow of life energy in a person.
       
  • Shiatsu Massage therapy - It's a manipulative therapy developed in Japan and incorporating techniques of anma (Japanese traditional massage), acupressure, stretching, and Western massage. It has been described as needle-free acupuncture.
    Shiatsu and other forms of Japanese acupressure are based on the concept of ki, the Japanese term for the all-pervading energy that flows through everything in the universe. (This notion is borrowed from the Chinese, who refer to the omnipresent energy as qi or chi.)
       
  • Rolfing Structural Integration - Systematic therapeutic program of soft tissue manipulation developed by Ida Rolf (1896-1979) in the 1950s. Ten-session sequences aim at rebalancing misaligned body structures and improving physical function.
  • MELT (Myofascial Energetic Length Technique) - Uses small balls and rollers on pressure points to restore the supportiveness of the body's connective tissue to eliminate chronic pain, improve performance, and decrease the accumulated stress caused by repetitive postures and movements of everyday living.
    About the MELT Method | MELT Method
    MELT : The Pilates Studio

  • Healing Touch

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last updated 10 jan 2013