By Nick Callos , eChinacities.com

Letting Your ‘Qi’ Flow: Traditional Chinese Medicine Centres in Chengdu
Photo: ifeng.com

Traditional Chinese medicine, or TCM, aims to bring and maintain harmony within your body. Your 'qi', blood, body fluids, major organs and meridians must be functioning in a balanced way or else you will get sick. This is where the treatments come in.

Acupuncture, cupping, scraping and body massages are the most popular traditional Chinese medicine treatments among foreigners in China; Chengdu is no exception. Take acupuncture for example: as tickly or stingy as it may feel, it is said to relieve things such as nausea, pain and fatigue. And cupping sucks those toxins right out of your body and gets that blood pumping at full efficiency. In general, Chinese medicine operates in a holistic way and has intrigued people all over the world for centuries. Whether you regularly get TCM treatment or just want to try it out, Chengdu is full of such clinics. So next time you're feeling under the weather, consider going to one of the following TCM centres in Chengdu.

1) Jiakang Baojian Massage嘉康保健 View In Map
With therapists that are professional, polite and flat-out skilled, Jiakang is one of the more popular options for TCM in Chengdu. The practitioners are priced according to their skills and expertise. So if you want the best massage, cupping or acupuncture, you will pay more for it. Are you feeling stiff? Try out one of their bone cracking and limb straightening 'tuina' massages. Is your colon feeling a little blocked? The therapists here are experts at cupping. Note that this will leave circular burn marks on you. Scraping, acupuncture, regular massages and soothing foot massages are offered as well.

The doctors are highly qualified and are experts in their field and prices are reasonable. A massage and traditional medicine treatment usually costs around 100 RMB. Apprentices will charge lower prices and the top experts there will obviously cost more.

Add: Fangcao Di, 1 Tongzilin Zhong Lu, Wuhou District, Chengdu
地址: 成都武侯区桐梓林中路1号芳草地
Opening hours: 08:00-23:00

2) Fuqiao Baojian Massage富侨保健草堂View In Map
These establishments are dotted across the city. One of the perks of going to Fuqiao is that you can play Mahjong and drink tea while you're waiting. What's better than that?

If your feet are strained from daily walking, this is the place to go. Foot massages here are great but Fuqiao Baojian also offers all the other classic traditional Chinese medicine treatments like acupuncture, herbal meds and scraping. Depending on what massage and treatment you get, prices range from 50 to 200 RMB here.

Qinghua Lu branch
Add: 43 Qinghua Lu, Qingyang District, Chengdu
地址: 成都青羊区青华路43号 (近杜甫草堂)
Tel: 028 8732 7987
Opening hours: 09:00-late

3) Yixiantang Acupuncture & Tuina Center 怡仙堂美 View In Map
With doctors who can communicate in English, professional service, and a prime location near the American Consulate, this centre is very popular among expats. This branch provides the ever intriguing moxibustion. If you don't know what this is, just ask for it. While the doctors here prepare it, you will be thinking to yourself, "Oh, my Lord! What have I dived into here." In this pleasing treatment, the therapist burns and grinds mugwort herb into a stick-like object and then directly burns it onto your skin. Moxibustion, according to alternative medicine experts, is said to increase the flow of 'qi' in the patient's body and helps alleviate ailments like arthritis, muscle stiffness, migraines, menstrual cramps, ulcers and digestive problems. It has also been said to help with cancer pain and infertility. 

Tuina massages, cupping, foot massages, acupuncture, scraping and herbal medicines are all offered at this health centre too. If you have come here to relieve back pain, the tuina massages are an especially good choice.

Add: 8 Chenglong Jie South Gate Center (near China Construction Bank), Second Floor, Wuhou District, Chengdu
地址:成都武侯区盛隆街8号(建行二楼)
Tel: 028 852 86220
Opening hours: 10:00-21:00

Look for a Place near You
The centres listed above are all mid-range to expensive in terms of price. Many smaller, mom-and-pop type joints give 45 minute full body massages for less than 30 RMB. And cupping and scraping is only 10 RMB or so. You can find such centres in every neighbourhood in Chengdu. There is undoubtedly something within walking distance of you.

Note that getting acupuncture at these smaller places is not advised due to health and safety concerns. When visiting a TCM centre for treatments, especially acupuncture, make sure the centre has the legal licenses to offer such treatments.

Useful TCM Related Vocab:

Chinese

Pronunciation

Meaning

中医

Zhōngyī

Chinese medicine

推拿

Tuīná

Massage

按摩

Ànmó

Massage

全身按摩

Quánshēn ànmó

Full-body massage

针灸

Zhēnjiǔ

Acupuncture

刮痧

Guāshā

Scraping (You can get it done on your neck, back, chest or all those parts. It will leave scratches on you.)

拔罐

Báguàn

Cupping

药酒

Yàojiǔ

Medicinal Liquor

艾灸

Àijiǔ

Moxibustion

疗法

Liáofǎ

Therapy, treatment

保健

Bǎojiàn

Health care

草药

Cǎoyào

Herbal medicine

 

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Keywords: Traditional chinese medicine centres Chengdu TCM Chengdu TCM centres Chengdu Chinese treatments Chengdu

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