What Type of Tui Na is Needed for Finger Joints?

What Type Of Tui Na Is Needed For Finger Joints — Health Coach's Advice

As FindItHealth’s lead wellness coach, you can trust me to offer comprehensive insights on how natural therapies can address specific health concerns.

Dealing with finger joint pain from tendonitis? Tui Na might be your solution.

Tui Na, a massage technique rooted in Chinese tradition, is effective for alleviating stiffness, pain, or mobility issues in finger joints. In particular, techniques such as rolling (Gun Fa) are utilized to dissolve adhesions and ease tension in these smaller areas. If you’re considering integrating Tui Na into your pain management regimen, continue reading to explore the full spectrum of techniques.

Finger Joint Pain And Tui Na

Melding massage with principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), here’s how Tui Na stands out in alleviating finger joint pain:

  • Targeted Techniques: Tui Na encompasses a range of hands-on methods, tailored especially for the delicate joints of the fingers, ensuring precise and effective relief.
  • Natural and Non-Invasive: Bypassing the need for medications or surgery, Tui Na stands as a holistic remedy, ideal for those leaning toward natural treatments and looking to sidestep pharmaceutical side effects.
  • Boosted Circulation: Tui Na massage invigorates the joint area, enhancing blood circulation. This aids in flushing out metabolic wastes and replenishing the zone with fresh oxygen and nutrients.
  • Dissolving Stagnation: This approach aims to disperse stagnant areas, fostering the unhindered flow of qi and blood, subsequently easing discomfort.
  • Inflammation Reduction: Certain Tui Na techniques can diminish swelling and inflammation in affected joints.
  • Muscle Spasm Relief: Targeting tense muscles and spasms near an aching joint, Tui Na assists in alleviating associated pressure and pain.
  • Joint Mobilization: Gentle maneuvers can expand the motion range and curtail stiffness, a boon, especially for conditions like arthritis.
  • Acupressure Applications: By engaging specific acupuncture points, practitioners can rejuvenate the body’s energy channels (meridians) to mitigate pain and address its root cause.
  • Harmonizing Yin and Yang: Central to TCM is the equilibrium of yin and yang. Tui Na’s ability to balance these energies not only offers pain relief but also augments overall wellness.


What Type Of Tui-Na Massage Is Best For Arthritis?

Tui-na’s combination of soft tissue massage coupled with its warming techniques has been shown to be effective in addressing arthritis. To delve deeper:

Soft Tissue Techniques

These center around finger pressure massage and joint manipulation techniques to address the soft tissues.

  • Rolling (Gun Fa): This method stimulates blood flow around compromised joints, helping to alleviate pain.
  • Rubbing (Mo Fa): A gentle rubbing approach warms the area and enhances circulation.
  • Pinching (Nie Fa): This pinching technique delves into deeper tissues, working to dispel stiffness and discomfort.
  • Joint Mobilizations: These gentle adjustments aim to bolster the motion range of the affected joint.
  • Acupressure: Targeting specific acupoints can be instrumental in diminishing pain and rectifying the root imbalances linked to arthritis. Key points often engaged for arthritis are LI4 (Hegu) on the back of the hand and ST36 (Zusanli) just below the knee.

Warmth Techniques

Warming the affected joint can prove helpful, especially for those with cold-type arthritis, where joints feel chilled, and symptoms exacerbate in colder climates.

  • Warming Liniments: Herbal poultices can be applied to impart warmth into the joint, aiding relief.
  • Moxibustion: This technique involves the cautious burning of mugwort, an herb, close to the skin. Its warmth targets specific points and is particularly beneficial for arthritis that manifests with cold or damp characteristics.

In certain scenarios, a Tui Na expert might also offer guidance on dietary choices, exercises, and other self-care measures to bolster arthritis management.


Why Tui-Na Works For Finger Joint Stiffness

Massage treatments are generally celebrated for their pain-relief and rehabilitative effects.

A 2009 study in Clinical Rheumatology highlighted the benefits of combining connective tissue massage with McMennell joint manipulation.

This was found to be an effective rehabilitation treatment for hands affected by systemic sclerosis.

Meanwhile, a 2006 study from Geriatric Nursing demonstrated the advantages of hand massage in enhancing the comfort and satisfaction of nursing home patients. This research underscores the potential of incorporating hand massage into the routine care of nursing home residents.

Fast forward to 2018, a study in Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice introduced participants with hand arthritis to the AromaTouch Hand Technique® (ATHT). The study protocol pairs moderate-pressure touch with essential oil applications on the hand. The results were telling: those in the treatment group completed dexterity tasks quicker, experienced a 50% dip in pain scores, boasted an increased finger strength, and exhibited a significantly wider angle of maximum flexion compared to their placebo counterparts.

Tui Na, a specific type of Chinese massage therapy, may offer comparable alleviating effects. However, for serious finger joint concerns, it’s always best to consult with a seasoned practitioner or seek medical advice for the most suitable treatment modalities.


Tuina Techniques For Finger Joints

Several Tui-na techniques cater to the nuanced regions of finger joints.

The “Mo Fa” or rubbing technique uses the thumb or fingertips to rhythmically spiral back and forth across the fingers. 

In “Nie Fa,” one gently pinches the skin and muscles of the finger, lifting them a bit to invigorate surface tissues and boost circulation.

An Fa” involves pressing specific points on the fingers with the thumb or fingertips; in TCM, fingers are conduits for several meridians, such as the Heart, Small Intestine, Large Intestine, and Lungs. Stimulating these points can enhance the flow of qi and blood.

The “Pai Fa” or tapping method lightly taps fingers using the fingertips to rejuvenate surface tissues and encourage circulation, while “Tan Fa” entails a relaxed flicking over the finger joints’ surface, aiding in chronic pain relief and stimulating qi and blood flow.


How Do You Massage An Arthritic Finger Joint?

Here are three self-massage techniques to help alleviate finger joint pain:

Hand Clench

Start by extending your fingers out. Gradually bend your hand into a fist, keeping the thumb on the outside. Hold this position for two seconds, then release. Aim for about 10 repetitions daily, or more if it feels comfortable and doesn’t cause any pain.

Ball Exercises

Enhance hand exercises with tools like a stress ball, soft foam ball, or even a tennis ball. These can amplify flexibility and fortify strength. One effective exercise is the full grip: tightly squeeze a stress ball in your hand and then release it after a few seconds. Repeat this 10 to 15 times for each hand. Incorporate this routine a couple of times a week, ensuring you have rest days in between.

Side-to-Side Wrist Bend

Rest your forearm on a flat surface, ensuring the palm is face down. Gently bend your wrist as far to the left as possible, holding for two seconds once you’ve reached the furthest point. Return the wrist to the center and repeat the movement to the right. This counts as one set. Aim to complete 10 sets twice daily for each hand.


Researchers at Find It Health gathered data that shows Tui Na offers more than mere physical benefits; it’s a powerful pathway to relaxation and stress relief. Considering that stress often exacerbates pain, Tui Na’s soothing effects play a crucial role in its healing efficacy. Many individuals note immediate relief or a significant reduction in pain following a Tui Na therapeutic massage.

Thank you for journeying with us through this article! Keep an eye on our website, as we continue to share more articles on natural therapies.

Find It Health Editor in Chief Luz Chacon Health and Wellness Coach Giving You Advice

Luz Chacon

Luz Chacon is a Health Educator, Wellness Coach, and EFT Tapping Practitioner with 30+ years in health advocacy. Specializing in stress management, wellbeing, and holistic health, she created a 40% stress reduction employee program. Luz is dedicated to helping busy individuals prioritize self-care, break patterns, and reach goals. She offers programs for organizations and individuals. Luz is passionate about sharing her health research and guiding informed choices!

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Luz Chacon Health Coaches at Find It Health and Stress Management and Natural Holistic Health Coaches