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Frequently Asked Questions



Acupuncture Questions

1. What is Acupuncture?
2. How does Acupuncture work?
3. What conditions are commonly treated by Acupuncture?
4. How does Acupuncture feel?
5. Are Acupuncture needles safe?
6. How many sessions do I need for treatment?
7. How often should I have Acupuncture treatment?
8. How long does each session take?
9. Should I stop other medications?
10. In which cases is Acupuncture inadvisable?
11. Does medical insurance cover Acupuncture treatment?

Tai Chi Questions

1. What is the difference between T'ai Chi Ch'uan, Tai Chi and Taijiquan?
2. What does Tai Chi Chuan mean?
3. What is the age range in classes?
4. Do you have to be fit to start doing Tai Chi?
5. What do you wear for Tai Chi?
6. Is Tai Chi a health exercise or a martial art?
7. Are classes suitable for men and women?
8. I wear orthotics (arch supports). Should I wear them to Tai Chi?
9. Where can I get a Tai Chi video?
10. I've heard that Tai Chi is an internal martial art?
11. Should I sign a pledge to my teacher not to train or practice with people?
12. What should I expect in a typical Tai Chi class?
13. How much should I expect to pay?

Shiatsu Questions

1. Is Shiatsu just for relaxation? Why is relaxation important in Shiatsu?
2. Is Shiatsu "preventative" or a form of treatment?
3. How long does it take to learn Shiatsu?
4. Can small children and animals be treated?
5. Does Shiatsu treat mental or physical illness?
6. Is Shiatsu the only way to release ja-ki (negative energy)?
7. What is Ki Training?


Acupuncture Questions

1. What is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is a complete medical system originated from China more than 3000 years ago. It applies traditional Chinese medicine theory to diagnose and treat illness, prevent disease and improve well-being by inserting very fine stainless steel acupuncture needles at critical points through human body. Due to its proven effectiveness, it has been becoming more and more popular throughout the world.

2. How does Acupuncture work?

There are two kinds of explanations about how acupuncture works. I would like to give a traditional explanation. In Traditional Chinese medicine, there exists a meridian system through human body and more than 360 acupoints are located at these meridians. Qi, or a stream of energy, flows through these meridians and acupoints to support tissue, muscles and organs. When the Qi is obstructed in certain critical points, or acupoints, the function of tissue, muscles and organs will be impaired.

Inserting Acupuncture needles into acupoints helps the release of Qi flow and corrects Qi imbalances at the organ level to improve your energy and internal processing.

Benefits

Since Acupuncture promotes the body's natural healing ability, many conditions can be corrected or improved. Also, it is being recognized that acupuncture is a comprehensive system of preventive health care and health maintenance. The effectiveness of acupuncture extends far beyond the conception that it is only useful for chronic pain management or as an analgesic. It has been discovered by many athletes that acupuncture treatment helps them to reach optimum performance levels. Recently Acupuncture detoxification treatments have been recognized as a valid form of therapy for chemical dependency problems such as drinking, drug and smoking. Throughout its long history, Acupuncture has established a solid reputation as an excellent alternative for health care. In China the are Acupuncture hospitals that run independently of Allopathic (Pharmaceutical based) medicine

3. What conditions are commonly treated by Acupuncture?

According to my clinic experience, the following conditions can be treated by acupuncture most effectively.

Pain Relieve and Control

It is well proven that acupuncture can treat many types of pain conditions such as Arthritis, Cervical Spondylopathy, Knee Pain, Hand and Foot Pain, Sciatica, Shoulder Pain, Tennis Elbow, Lower Back and Neck Pain, Tendonitis, etc. More than half of my patients who suffered from different pains visited my clinics. Most of them have received satisfactory treatment results. I have some patients who suffered injury due to car or sports accidents. They are also very pleased with acupuncture treatment.

Quitting Smoking

It usually takes four to eight sessions of Acupuncture treatment to help smokers quit smoking. The usual way in Traditional Acupuncture is to first identify the underlying balance, help to rectify that, before working on the smoking issue. The treatment of the underlying imbalance means that people say they 'feel better generally' their sleep has improved etc. Various complaints the client did not come to be specifically treated for start to diminish. That's when the client is ready to be treated for the smoking. This ensures longer lasting results. Otherwise it is easy to restart smoking when the pressure build at home or at work. To simply suppress the smoking urge is not a wise idea;often people take up something else, over eating for example and that is not a good long term solution.

Other Conditions

I have successfully treated other diseases and conditions such as Anxiety and Depression, Facial Paralysis, Insomnia, Neuralgia, Stroke Rehabilitation, TMJ, Whiplash, etc.

4. How does Acupuncture feel?

Prior to their first treatment, many people do not believe that acupuncture can be painless. Different sensations such as soreness, numbness, distending, warmth and pressure may be felt, but the energetic sensation differs from pain. People often comment that the feeling is unfamiliar but pleasant and relaxing. As people have different pain thresholds, reaction can vary.

Acupuncture needles are very fine, about the size of a thick hair. They are solid and nothing is injected through them. Over the centuries, refined needle insertion techniques have been developed which enable the skilled Acupuncture practitioner to place a needle with little or no sensation.

If you have a real fear of needles, discuss it with me. If need be shiatsu or other healing modality may be substituted. An appropriate treatment strategy can always be agreed upon.

5. Are Acupuncture needles safe?

Yes! Because now Acupuncture is carried out with sterile and disposable needles approved by HSE.

6. How many sessions do I need for treatment?

Since each person is unique, the number of treatments needed will vary. Among the determining factors are the type of condition, whether the condition is chronic or acute, and the vitality of the individual. Again, you should discuss your treatment program with your Acupuncturist.

7. How often should I have Acupuncture treatment?

Normally I start with weekly sessions. If the situation is serious, for example, severe pain is experienced, more frequent treatments may be advisable.

8. How long does each session take?

Normally, each session takes 45 to 60 minutes. It depends on the sensitivity of each individual and the kind of diseases and conditions being treated.

General speaking, the quality of Acupuncture treatment relies on the experience and skill of an Acupuncturist. They are combination of diagnosis of symptoms, accuracy of acupoints, timing, the depth and angle of insertion, techniques of manipulation, etc.

9. Should I stop other medications?

No. You should continue to follow your current physician's instructions. Please remember that Acupuncture is used to complement and supplement your physician's treatments not to replace them. You should discuss this issue with your physician and Acupuncturist.

10. In which cases is Acupuncture inadvisable?

A patient should never be needled under the following conditions:

When the patient is too hot; when his or her pulse is greatly disturbed; when he or she is drunk or angry; when he or she is hungry or has eaten too much; when he or she is overly tired, out of breath; or when he or she is full of great fear.

11. Does medical insurance cover Acupuncture treatment?

I can not give you a "yes" or "no" answer. That depends on what type of health insurance plan you have have. I can recommend one that does not require a doctors approval and refunds up to 50% of fees paid, after an initial 'cooling off period' when you first join. It also covers other treatments like dentistry, opticians etc.


Tai Chi Questions

1. What is the difference between T'ai Chi Ch'uan, Tai Chi and Taijiquan?

None. They are different spellings and shortened versions of the same term (taijiquan is the modern pinyin spelling and tai-chi is sometimes seen too)

2. What does Tai Chi Chuan mean?

It has been translated as 'Supreme Ultimate Martial Art' but I prefer 'Martial Art Using the Principle of Yin and Yang'.

3. What is the age range in classes?

This varies from class to class but expect a broad range of ages, (teens and 20's up to 80's & 90's) but it is not common for the art to be taught to children as the training is a little slow for their tastes.

4. Do you have to be fit to start doing Tai Chi?

No, in fact many of the Tai Chi movements can even be adapted to wheelchair users, although some individual attention is required. Do however check with your doctor or other health care practitioner if you are in any doubt before starting any program of physical exercise. Also let your instructor know of any disability you may have that may restrict your ability to perform certain movements.

5. What do you wear for Tai Chi?

No special clothing is required but the right outfit can help you move more easily and balance better. Any clothing in which you can move freely is suitable e.g. tracksuit bottoms, T-shirts and gym shoes.

6. Is Tai Chi a health exercise or a martial art?

It is both (although some teachers teach only the health aspects)! Probably 90% of people starting Tai Chi are there purely for their health, but many go on to embrace the complete art. However if all you are interested in is self-defense there are faster ways to achieve this.

7. Are classes suitable for men and women?

Generally there is a mix of men and women in a class. Women-only classes are a rarity in Tai Chi and it is generally beneficial to have a mix of Yin (female) and Yang (male) energy within a class.

8. I wear orthotics (arch supports). Should I wear them to Tai Chi?

Yes , probably as you may find your muscles shorten when you don't wear them, however opinion is divided on this and some find they can eventually stop wearing them. You will find you need more supportive footwear than kung fu slippers though - see below..

9. Where can I get a Tai Chi video?

Tai Chi is best studied under an experienced teacher rather than a video. However videos are a good way of remembering a sequence of movements. Tai chi is about letting go of excessive tension that is habitual. You need to have an aware teacher to help you let go of such habits. A video could not possibly be a substitute

10. I've heard that Tai Chi is an internal martial art?

Taijiquan is one of the three Chinese Internal martial arts (neijia). The other two being Xing I Quan and Ba Gua Zhang. It is a characterized by soft relaxed movements and trained at a slower speed than other martial arts.

11. Should I sign a pledge to my teacher not to train or practice with people outside the group?

Absolutely not! We progress by sharing our knowledge with a generous spirit. Few secrets are withheld from dedicated students. Regular training is the main requirement for reaching a high level in tai chi and there are many highly skilled teachers around these days. Discipleship - becoming a close member of the family - is a privilege seldom offered to westerners (although even this in this increasingly commercial world it is said can sometimes be bought).

12. What should I expect in a typical Tai Chi class?

  • Chi Kung (Qigong) which may be stationary or moving meditation
  • Practice of the Tai Chi Form
  • Pushing Hands (tui shou) - a two person exercise usually taught from intermediate level
  • You may also see ta lu, and weapons forms in more advanced classes
not forgetting warm-ups etc.

Some general principles

  • Suspend the head
  • Hollow the chest and raise the back (but don't overdo it)
  • Relax the waist and hips
  • Sink the shoulders and drop the elbows
  • Use intent(yi) rather than force
  • Move as a single unit
  • The mind and body together
  • Move like a cat, without excess tension
  • Keep a calm mind

13. How much should I expect to pay?

I charge by the term. We go according to the school term generally, so it depends how long a particular school term is. It is possible to pay weekly for those on shifts etc., but the charge is higher. For private individual tuition my current charge is £26 per hour.


Shiatsu Questions

1. Is Shiatsu just for relaxation? Why is relaxation important in Shiatsu?

Yes, some forms of shiatsu are done for relaxation but in Tao Shiatsu, relaxation is just the preliminary step in releasing the free flow of ki(or life force). The body needs relaxation to respond to the stimulation of treatment. If the body is tense, ki is closed off. The energy body is the focus of treatment. By seeking to balance disturbances in energy circulation, illness is healed and prevented.

2. Is Shiatsu "preventative" or a form of treatment?

It's both a preventative and a form of treatment. In addition it assists in personal growth and development.

3. How long does it take to learn Shiatsu?

It depends primarily on the student. The long established courses usually take 3 years.

4. Can small children and animals be treated?

Shiatsu includes a special Children's Form adapted to young children's special requirements. Yes, shiatsu can be used on animals but because human beings have a much more developed consciousness it is far more effective on people.

5. Does Shiatsu treat mental or physical illness?

Both, because the mind and body are seen as intimately connected by the flow of ki. Therefore treatment effects the whole person, body, mind and spirit.

6. Is Shiatsu the only way to release ja-ki (negative energy)?

No, but it is an effective way.

7. What is Ki Training?

This is a system for developing sensitivity and cultivation of ki through individual and pair exercises. Ki is then utilized in shiatsu treatment.

Ring Altair:01684 562528
Email: [email protected]







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