The body has channels called in English meridians, and Chinese Traditional Medicine counts 12 major meridians in the arms and legs. This massage follows the general path and direction of energy flow in the meridians, helping to undo blockages or stagnation (which is often associated with pain), and promoting the free flow of energy in the entire body.
Stand unclothed or wearing underwear or shorts, preferably facing East. Facing North is acceptable, or West, but not South. This is especially good to practice in the morning but can be done any time.
This simple massage can be done using oil or without. If using oil, you can briefly rub some oil on your arms and legs first. The hand that is doing the massage should be firmly pressed against the limbs maintaining full contact of palm and all the fingers.
With your Left hand, start pressing your Right hand at the very tips of the Right fingernails, moving up the outside of the Right arm up to the shoulder cap, then turn your Right arm over and continue the stroke, using your Left hand, down the inside of the Right arm, from armpit and carry the stroke off the ends of the Right fingertips. Do this at least 12 times.
Then do the exact same movements using the Right arm to massage the Left arm – starting at the Left fingernails, up to the shoulder cap, turning the Left arm around and rubbing from the armpit down off the ends of the Left fingertips. Repeat at least 12 times.
Using both hands at the same time, bend over, and starting at the tips of the toes, massage in one continuous stroke (as for the arms), keeping the palms pressed against the legs firmly. Move up the feet, getting the inside edge of the feet, up the ankles and inside the legs up into the abdomen. Repeat this stroke at least 12 times. If one is weak and needs energy, more times can be done on this stroke.
Then, standing, start with both hands on the back of the hips by the lower back, rub down the back and outside of the legs, all the way to the outside of the feet and stroke off the ends of the toes, at least 12 times. If one is detoxifying or overweight, more times should be done on this stroke.
If there is time, one can then massage the chest with both hands, making circular motions on the pectoral area, then the abdomen, making circular motion (in the direction of the intestines), also up and down on the lower back, squeezing the shoulders, and carefully massaging the face. One can also try massaging the ears – pinching, gently rubbing and pulling, and massaging the soles of the feet.
Even just a few minutes spent every day invigorates the body and helps the flow of energy in the meridians, thus benefiting all the bodily organs and systems.