In my quest to refine my skills as an acupuncturist, I travelled to Paris at the end of May. I attended a very special seminar about a form of acupuncture previously taught by only one person in the whole world.
This method promises instant results 100% of the time! If you find this crazy, read on!
So, here is the main thing I learnt at the end of each day, in true Dr Tan’s spirit:
Two guys, one old, one young, are pushing their carts around the grocery store when they collide.
The old guy says to the young guy, “Sorry about that. I’m looking for my wife, and I guess I wasn’t paying attention to where I was going.”
The young guy says, “That’s okay, it’s a coincidence. I’m looking for my wife, too. I can’t find her and I’m getting a little desperate.”
The old guy says, “Well, maybe I can help you find her. What does she look like?”
“Well, she is 27 years old, tall, with red hair, blue eyes, long legs, and is wearing a tank top with short white shorts. What does your wife look like?”
The old guy replies, “It doesn’t matter, let’s look for yours.”
Now, to come back to the beginning:
In Paris, I attended the Si Yuan Balance Method Foundation course for 4 days.That was really intense, it actually felt as if someone had put my acupuncture brain in a blender.
Although it is labelled “Foundation” is does not mean it is for beginners. Already to be able to follow what is presented in the first two days, you need to have finished about two years of acupuncture study, know the Chinese name of the meridian by heart and their path on the body.
The course is a “Foundation” course in the way that it is the main block on which the whole method is built, with this, it is possible to treat 95% of the patients we are likely to receive in the clinic.
Before going on to their “Advanced course”, they advise to repeat the Foundation course at least twice. Having done it once already, I know why. Day 1 & 2 were okay, but my brain saturated a bit from day 3, and a month later, I am only starting to assimilate it…
This was the first course done entirely in French by Delphine Armand, student under Dr Richard Tan for 10 years, until he sadly passed away in 2015. Usually, the courses are taught in English all over the world. Currently, only his three closest students are passing on his method, which he devoted 30 years of his life to build.
Gaining in popularity, the Balance Method of Dr Richard Tan makes a link between today and how acupuncture was practised 4,000 years ago.
The current Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is a post-WWII creation / compilation of the Chinese medicine material by the Chinese government, producing diagnostic tools more suited to herbalists than acupuncturists.
This is why, especially for systemic conditions, acupuncturists often supplement the acupuncture treatment with herbs.
Dr Tan’s Balance Method is the result of a lifetime of research through the unpublished ancient Chinese texts, piecing together past knowledge and testing it on countless patients. In this way, it is closer to Classic acupuncture than TCM.
To keep it simple, as an acupuncturist, it is important to put down the TCM glasses and swap for the acupuncture glasses.
As an acupuncturist, one does not treat organs or symptoms, one treats meridians.
With these new glasses, the patient’s condition is diagnosed by the affected meridians. For example, someone with a frontal headache has an issue located on the Bladder meridian, and someone with a runny nose has an issue located on the Large Intestine meridian. When a patient is suffering from a condition with no localised manifestation, the acupuncturist must take into account the function and attributes of a meridian in order to treat the patient.
In the past, I have run into patients which were difficult for me to treat. these were usually very localised pains such as shoulder problems and tennis elbow. Now using this method only, I already had some instant results for both these conditions!
Yes instant results, this means that as soon as the needle is inserted the patient feels a change. This can manifest a the pain “moving” to another location or fading, same with internal conditions with localised manifestations.
In order for the patient to test the affected part of their body, move the shoulder, flex their legs, etc… it is important for the needling to be done distally (away from the affected area). For this purpose, the Balance method uses mirror and images in order to determine the part of the body that should be needled. For example, to treat a tennis elbow on the right arm, an BMA acupuncturist can needle either the legs or the opposite arm of the patient.
Simply put, this method has three main advantages:
– Instant result: the patient knows if you have hit the spot!
– Simplicity: less needles are used than in a traditional treatment
– Distal needling: needle healthy meridians to heal affected meridians for a maximum effect! (plus, patient can remain dressed!)
Another advantage is the possibility to do Community acupuncture. As the patients remain dressed and usually sit on a chair, it becomes possible to treat several patients at once.
The patients would usually be separated by blinds or curtains so as to maintain some privacy and the ability to relax or sleep.
A community acupuncture setting actually contributes to create a healing atmosphere in the practice and also keep the session fees more affordable for the patients (from £60-£45 down to £35-£15). Which broadens the access of the acupuncture as a treatment to more people.
To discover more, here is their website: www.siyuanbma.com
Thank you for reading and see you next time!