Traditional Chinese massage, also known as TuiNa, is actually a very complicated and complete form of massage which is centuries old. To try and describe it succinctly is somewhat doing it an injustice but here goes.

TuiNa is part of traditional Chinese medicine (just as massage is an integral part of India’s Ayurvedic medecine) and one of the oldest treatments alongside acupuncture and phytotherapy.

The aim of TuiNa is to promote the circulation of qi – vital energy – in the body by unblocking the meridians (energy channels), balancing left and right sides of the body, top and bottom, and back and front.

Just take a quick look at this chart of the body’s meridians and you’ll understand the complexity of it all.


Alongside this is the notion of the elements which rule us and balance our yin and yang (two complementary principles of Chinese philosphy, one dark, one bright).


Traditional Chinese massage incorporates all these notions and treats all parts of the body from the head to the feet. It doesn’t just use massage, though – there may also be pressure to specific points to remove blockages, as well as some passive manipulation.

What to expect

A minimum amount of massage oil is used, just enough for comfort and treatment starts with a hands-on pause to allow the therapist to make first contact. The massage begins with long, slow strokes (effleurage) to warm up muscle tissue prior to working on releasing any knots or areas of tension. Different techniques exist in Chinese massage, notably the « gunfa » which uses the pressure of the knuckles in a rhythmic rolling movement to alleviate tension.



There is also a kneading technique called roufa which uses the base of the hand in a static rotative movement as well as mofa, a circular sliding pressure. Vibrations (zhenfa) are often used, particularly to relieve tension areas that have been worked on.The forearms and even elbows can be used as well as the hands. Different acupuncture points can be stimulated to alleviate varying problems according to Chinese medicine.

Applying pressure either side of the spine

Applying pressure either side of the spine

Generally speaking TuiNa tries to find your aches and pains and act upon them.

TuiNa is a very complete form of massage, working from the tips of the toes to the top of the head. As such you can benefit from it on just part of your body e.g. feet or head and still come away feeling invigorated.

Just Massage offers Traditional Chinese massage as a full body massage (60 or 90 minutes) or Part Body massages.


Just Massage offers home massage in and around the Mérignac and Pessac area (near Bordeaux, France).