The Bai Hui pressure point is the 20th point on the Governing Vessel (aka Du Mai). It is located on the midline of the head, basically at the crown. The Bai Hui pressure point,also known as the DU20, has many names: “Hundred Convergences” (or “Meetings”), Dian Shang or “Mountain Top”, and Tian Man or “Celestial Fullness”. This point is also considered the meeting place of the “hundred spirits” and “hundred diseases”.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) it is known as “hundred convergences” because this is the area where the six Yang energetic channels and the Governing Vessel meet. Numerous bones of the skull meet here as well. In TCM it is said that “heaven, earth and man are the three powers” and the DU20 is the “human connection to heaven”. This obviously makes it important for conditions affecting the head and sensory organs.
In TCM and acupuncture, the Bai Hui is used to “clear the senses”, treat emotions, memory, behavior, and to “calm the spirit”. The Bai Hui is felt to be effective in the treatment of stress, headaches, vertigo, nasal obstruction/congestion, tinnitus, mental or physical tension, sleep disorders, balance, circulation issues, fatigue, brain fog,mental disorders, hyper- and hypo-tension, and inability to taste food and/or drink. The Bai Hui also “benefits the head, brain, and the organs of the five senses (eyes, ears, tongues, skin, and nose)”.
Interestingly, the Bai Hui (DU20) can either ascend or descend and can used to either uplift or sedate. Thus it can be used to treat disorders of the two “poles” of our torso. The DU20 is included in the Microcosmic Orbit, running from the pelvic floor to the base of the spine to the head. Reminder: the Microcosmic Orbit creates a continuous circular energetic loop between two distinct meridians: the Ren (Conception Vessel) and the Du (Governing Vessel).
Located at the top of your head, the Bai Hui (DU20) is effective in treating “downward disorders”, such as diarrhea, heavy menses, and any organ prolapse including the uterus and/or rectum. It is also said to “lift” motivation, drive, and a low (sinking mood). Bai Hui manipulation has been used to maintain a healthy pregnancy and for cosmetic purposes such as lifting sagging skin.
Quite a list! No wonder acupuncturists consider the Bai Hui (DU20) an “All Star”. According to at least one acupuncturist, starting with the Bai Hui, is “the acupuncture equivalent of taking a few deep breaths or meditating for a while”. This area calms the mind and the entire body. It is a good acupuncture starting place because there are those who get nervous when they see needles.
Can you manipulate the Bai Hui without going to a acupuncturist? Certainly!
How do I find my Bai Hui so that I can improve my health? It’s pretty easy!
Put your thumbs at the tops of your ears. Now extend your middle fingers to the point where they meet – at the top of your head (crown). To perform your own acupressure at the Bai Hui (DU20), just lightly rest your middle fingers and your awareness/attention at this point
- Apply pressure with your finger directly on the Bai Hui. You can also use your knuckles or a small round ball (think golf ball) to apply greater pressure.Don’t massage or rub.
- Pressure should be slow and firm.
- Apply and release the pressure gradually when the soreness decreases in order to promote energy flow.
- Take long, slow, deep breaths while focusing your intention on the Bai Hui.
- You can apply pressure for approximately 15–20 seconds, then release for 5 seconds. Continue as desired for about 5 minutes.
According to Tai Chi Master Yang Cheng-Fu, “without lifting your Bai Hui point, even 30 years of practice would be a waste of time”. Let’s discuss why lifting your Bai Hui (DU20) is so important to both martial artists and other practitioners.
When you lift your Bai Hui:
- You automatically tuck your chin down and inwards. The head bends slightly forward. Martially, this protects your neck and as the old Masters said: Conceal your throat and challenge all the heroes in the world.
- You straighten your spine. This helps decompress your spinal vertebrae to avoid or reduce headaches, indigestion, low back pain and stiffness, and other health problems. You also improve your posture, balance, agility, and martial skills.
- The circulation in your brain improves. Both Eastern and Western medicine recognize that obstruction of brain circulation (even for a few minutes) can result in permanent brain damage or stroke.
- Qi and Blood follow to the Bai Hui when intention to that area is increased!
With or without applying acupressure (or acupuncture), there are many compelling reasons to “lift your Bai Hui”. Your body, brain, and spirit will thank you!