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 Integrative Medicine: Acupressure for Menstrual Cramps 

Acupressure Exercises

Exercise 1: Balances the Entire Reproductive System
This exercise balances the energy of the female reproductive tract and alleviates all menstrual complaints. It also helps relieve low back pain and abdominal discomfort. Equipment: This exercise uses a knotted hand towel to put pressure on hard-to -reach areas of the back. Place the knotted towel on these points while your two hands are on other points. This increases your ability to unblock the energy pathways of your body.

  • Lie on the floor with your knees up. As you lie down, place the towel between the shoulder blades on your spine. Hold each step 1 to 3 minutes.

  • Cross your arms on your chest. Press your thumbs against the right and left inside upper arms.

  • Left hand holds point at the base of the sternum (breastbone).

    Right hand holds point at the base of the head (at the junction of the spine and the skull).

  • Interlace your fingers. Place them below your breasts. Fingertips should press directly against the body.

  • Move the knotted towel along the spine to the waistline.

  • Left hand should be placed at the top of the pubic bone, pressing down.
    Right hand holds point on tailbone.

Exercise 2: Relieves Cramps, Bloating, Fluid Retention, Weight Gain
This sequence of points balances the points on the spleen meridian. It helps to relieve menstrual cramps. It also relieves bloating and fluid retention and helps to minimize weight gain in the period leading up to menstruation.
  • Sit up and prop your back against a chair, or lie down and put your lower legs on a chair. Hold each step 1 to 3 minutes.

  • Left hand is placed in the crease of the groin where you bend your leg, one-third to one-half way between the hip bone and the outside edge of the pubic bone. Right hand holds a spot 2 to 3 inches above the knee.

  • Left hand remains in the crease of the groin.
    Right hand holds point below inner part of knee. To find the point, follow the curve of the bone just below the knee. Hold the underside of the curve with your fingers.

  • Left hand remains in the crease of the groin.
    Right hand holds the inside of the shin. To find this point, go four fingerwidths above the ankle bone. The point is just above the top finger.

  • Left hand remains in the crease of the groin.
    Right hand holds the edge of the instep. To find the point, follow the big toe bone up until you hit a knobby, prominent small bone.
(Excerpted from The Menopause Self Help Book ISBN: 0890877769)
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 About The Author
Susan Lark MDDr. Susan M. Lark is one of the foremost authorities on women's health issues and is the author of nine books. She has served on the faculty of Stanford University Medical School...more
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