Chi Nei Tsang
For Happy, Healthy Organs
What is Chi Nei Tsang?
Chi Nei Tsang is a form of bodywork practiced on the abdomen that regulates the energy and proper functioning of the internal organs in order to address the root cause of imbalances, tap into the energy of the core, and relieve deep-rooted physical and emotional tension. This profound practice originates from the White Cloud Monks in Tibet and uses the concept that energy and efficient movement originate in the core. When we free the core, the entire body and mind benefit. Chi Nei Tsang is often used to relieve lower back pain, promote healthy digestion, reduce IBS and pre-menstrual tension, encourage efficient breathing, restore proper muscle tone, reduce sexual dysfunction and tension in the pelvic floor, and help in the assimilation of emotions and release of stagnant energy embedded in the body.
In modern society when we hear the word massage we usually think about our aching muscles and our organs are an afterthought if they even reach our consciousness, even though they are vital to our overall health. This is reflected in our daily lives as we often don’t pay enough attention to the signals coming from our stomachs (just one more cookie won't hurt!) or check in with the status of our liver. Many of us don’t realize that most of our stomachs aren’t located around our belly buttons (that’s your small intestines, the stomach is higher up and predominantly under your left rib cage!) and don’t give our organs much thought until something is acutely out balance, whether it be a digestive issue or the development of a debilitating condition.
In a Chi Nei Tsang (CNT) treatment massage is lovingly applied to the abdomen to improve the efficiency of the internal organs, reduce tension, and aid in emotional digestion. The body stores unresolved emotional charges of past experiences. A CNT session aids the receiver in creating an environment in which these emotional charges can be acknowledged, processed, and integrated to resolve the source of chronic pain and foster personal development.
Different techniques are used to stimulate the proper functioning of the organs such as circling, rocking, activating pressure points, pumping organs, sliding with oil, and many other techniques used to encourage the release of tension. Each of these techniques can be used to various effect. For example, sliding underneath the rib cage can release tension in the diaphragm, allowing for more expansive breathing. Sliding along the digestive tract can aid physical digestion, and digestion of the emotional body. Sliding along the liver can help to bring bile into the duct shared with the gallbladder and pancreas. As a session progresses, the body relaxes and invites a deeper touch, providing deeper insights to the receiver through interoceptive awareness.
We can learn a great deal about the whole body by exploring the abdomen. Let’s take the shape of the navel as an example. When lying down relaxed many people will have a deviation from the deep, circular belly button shape. Look at the picture below. See how the belly button is pulling upwards toward the ribcage and down toward the pelvic floor, making the belly button skinnier and longer? This could indicate potential tightness around the lungs due to improper breathing, residual tension in the pelvic floor, or a pulling of the fascia due to a past injury, among many other potential causes. In CNT we explore areas of tension to use as a guideline to direct our attention and intention. Listening deeply to the body, no two sessions are exactly the same.
CNT can also help to correct postural imbalances as it aids in restoring the organs and their surrounding supportive structures to proper positioning. This can help to alleviate chronic tension due to misalignment, common causes of lower back, shoulder, and neck pain, as well as sexual dysfunction.
In my experience CNT is about sending love to the belly. As the belly is an energetic hub (we received all our life sustaining energy from this area as a fetus) this love is spread to the organs and throughout the body. Deep transformation requires getting to the root cause of imbalance and increasing our own self-awareness. As a human being you are ultimately responsible for your own health. CNT helps to put you in touch with your body so that you can listen to it better as it speaks in sensation and emotions.
A major component of CNT is to treat all aspects of the human experience, treating patients in their totality as a human being rather than the specific conditions a patient may exhibit. A treatment can help you to digest and eliminate stagnant energy, lingering emotions that are ready to be processed, and provide insight that you can use to take more control of being responsible for your overall health; physically, emotionally, mentally, and energetically.