Eastern Modalities

Eastern Modalities

Eastern modalities are healing techniques originated from Asia countries that have been used for thousands of years with proven outcome and benefits. They are often used for a holistic approach in treating various health issues. As a college that integrates western & eastern modalities, CITCM includes these modalities in the massage curriculum to provide opportunities to students to learn basic techniques of various modalities. This will allow students to pursue specialization upon their graduation. The goal is to train our graduates to become the best educated and most distinguished Registered Massage Therapist in the field specializing in orthopedic massage combined with eastern acupressure, cupping, shiatsu, thai massage, Tui Na, reflexology, and much more!

Tuina Massage

TuinaTuina is a modality of traditional Chinese medicine utilizing massage techniques applied based on TCM theories and principles. This massage style body treatment, often called meridian massage in North America, has a repertoire of techniques including kneading, pressing, rolling, brushing and rubbing the areas between the joints, referred to as the 8 gates, to move the qi through the muscles and meridians to bring the body back into harmony.

Originating from the words “Tui” meaning to push and “Na” meaning to squeeze and/or lift, the Tuina practitioner applies massage techniques including the stimulation of acupressure points, traction, and range of motion exercise to treat both musculoskeletal and internal conditions of both an acute and chronic nature.

Although both advanced training is found outside of China, within China Tuina is taught and practiced as a specialization for the treatments in sports medicine, cosmetology and esthetics, orthopedics and rehabilitation, and traumatology in both adult and pediatric patients.


Acupressure is an ancient healing art that’s based on the traditional Chinese medicine practice of acupuncture. With acupressure, you put pressure on specific places on your body. These places are called acupoints.

Pressing these points can help release muscle tension and promote blood circulation.

Thai Massage

Thai massage works the entire body using a sequence of movements that are similar to yogic stretching. Student will learn to work with compression using their feet, elbows, knees and hands to compress as well as learning stretching a body into various positions.

The benefits of Thai massage are various from alleviating lower back and joint pain to increasing flexibility and energizing your mind and body.


Shiatsu is a form of massage therapy originating in Japan. Coming from the Japanese words of “Shi” meaning finger and “Atsu” meaning pressure, this type of massage applies pressure techniques along the traditional meridian lines in the human body. Treatmentology includes both passive and active stimulation and manipulation of the soft tissue often combined with stretching and exercise movements for full restoration of the affected body area. Originally based on acupuncture theory and practice there is also the incorporation of assessment and treatment utilizing cutaneovisceral reflexes in the abdomen and on the back which, in non-medical terms refers to a diagnostic and treatment protocol based on palpitation of the abdominal region where most of the major organs are located and can be physically felt using slight pressure.

As Shiatsu grew throughout the years many techniques were developed and are similar to those found in other forms of natural healing including osteopathy, physiotherapy, and lymphatic drainage. Shiatsu differentiates from these other modalities with treatment of mental health conditions and the utilizing energy flow of the meridians throughout the body to relieve the symptoms of these physical and mental ailments and diseases.

The application of these techniques is accomplished by using the thumbs, fingers, knees, and elbow as well as certain tools utilized in a percussion manner to improve the blood and qi circulation and the lymphatic function all while relieving pain, muscle tension and fatigue.


The use of cupping in ancient cultures has been traced back to four primary civilizations: Egypt, China, Greece and Islam. It was recorded the use of animal horns as cups which were replaced over time by bamboo cups and then glass, metal or silicone cups. In China, cupping therapy can be traced back to the Han Dynasty where a famous herbalist/alchemist named Ge Hong was recorded as being the first to use cupping therapy in China and believed that when “combining acupuncture and cupping half of all illnesses can be cured”.


Gua sha is a traditional Chinese healing method in which a trained professional uses a smooth-edged tool to stroke your skin while they press on it. This motion raises small, red, rash-like dots that show under your skin called petechiae.

People use gua sha to treat chronic pain all over their body. They often do it alongside other complementary treatments like herbal medicine, massage, acupuncture, and heat therapy.

Auricular Therapy

Auricular Therapy, also called Auriculotherapy, is both a diagnostic and an integrative treatment procedure that is used for pain relief and the alleviation of addictions. The principles of Auricular Therapy are based both upon Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine and upon neurological reflex therapies that were discovered in Europe. The essential premise in Auricular Therapy is that there are a neurological reflexes and energetic correspondences between specific areas of the external ear, or auricle, and other parts of the body that are arranged in the pattern of an inverted fetus. Detection of selective ear reflex points can be determined by monitoring tenderness to applied pressure, by electrical measurement of lowered skin resistance, or by the physical observation of small regions of skin discoloration or skin protrusions.

Treatment of these reactive ear reflex points can be achieved by:

  • tactile acupressure,
  • by the insertion of acupuncture needles,
  • or by transcutaneous electrical stimulation.

Auricular Therapy is effectively utilized to reduce chronic pain and anxiety within a few minutes of treatment and can alleviate the aversive symptoms of opioid withdrawal or reduce the craving for opioid medications.

Nutrition and Food Therapy

In Chinese Medicine (TCM) diet/nutrition, it emphasizes the importance of achieving balance in the body through dietary planning. TCM Food Therapy aims at treating common pathologies based on individual’s TCM diagnosis like qi deficiency or blood deficiency. The diet differentiates between six food groups: meats, fruit, dairy, vegetables, grains, and spices and herbs. By following a diet that is recommended based on TCM diagnosis, one can have a balanced qi circulation.