Marma therapy or accupressure is an important tool of both disease prevention and disease treatment in Ayurveda. It can be used to balance the dosha, to increase agni (the digestive fire), for detoxification (reduce ama), as well as to promote energy (vajikarana) and aid in rejuvenation (rasayana). “MARMA” is a Sanskrit term for sensitive or vulnerable points on the body.
Ayurvedic energy points similar to acupuncture points. Marmas are also locations in which the dosha of Vata, Pitta and Kapha can be held, along with their subtle essences of prana, tejas and ojas. As sensitive zones, marmas can hold various emotion like fear (vata), anger (pitta) or attachment (kapha), as well as the gunas or primary qualities of sattva (calm), rajas (aggression) and tamas (inertia). In this regard the concept of marmas goes beyond modern medicine and its purely physical definitions to the principles of mind-body medicine.
Marmas are of various composition relative to the tissues that make them up, defined as bone, tendon, muscle, nerve or vein, including relative to channels that carry the doshas and channels that carry thought and emotion. Many Marmas are on peripheral regions of the body like arms and legs.
The treatment of marmas, though having many methods, is primarily a matter of therapeutic touch. Ayurveda employs massage and pressure to marma points. Ayurveda use special medicated massage oil, generally herbs prepared in a sesame oil base.
Benefits of using acupressure or marma therapy include relieving pain, balancing the body, and maintaining good health. Acupressure’s healing touch reduces tension, increases circulation, and enables the body to relax deeply.