Published Internationally 2007

Kurcha – a Marma Point for the eyes & ears

By Sharon Stathis

I had always wondered why Eunice Ingham placed her eye and ear reflex areas at the base of the toes and fingers. Knowing that the reflex area for the head was represented ON the toes and fingers, the location of the eye and ear reflexes at their base, remained a mystery to me. That is, until I discovered the Kurcha marma point of Ayurveda.

Ayurveda is the traditional medicine system of India. It is the world’s oldest recorded healing system, with written records dating back approximately 5,000 years. The focus for Ayurvedic medicine is on disease prevention. However, if the body develops problems, Ayurveda can provide many helpful forms of therapy for healing.

One of these is Marma Therapy. This is of particular interest to reflexologists, as there are five marma points on each foot and hand. The points that occur on one limb are mirrored on the opposite side. Some of the most important marma points used for treatment purposes are found on the limbs.

The marma points are located along “nadis”, the subtle energy channels of the body. The nadis in the Ayurvedic system are the equivalent of the energy meridians of the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) system. The marma points are the equivalent of the acupuncture points. There are similarities and differences when we compare the points of these two ancient systems of healing.

Marma points are areas where the vital life force called “prana” tends to accumulate and flow. Within Ayurvedic philosophy, wellness and the ability to heal are dependant upon the unimpeded movement of prana within the body. Blockages of this vital life force can lead to health problems. Reflexologists can significantly encourage the flow of prana by routinely working each marma point for as little as thirty seconds during a reflexology session.

The marmas are much bigger than acupuncture points and consequently much easier to locate and work. The marma points vary considerably in size. The smallest is approximately the size of the tip of the little finger. The largest is almost as big as the clenched fist. Marma therapy is usually more effective if the feet or hands are massaged first, to stimulate the cardiovascular and energetic circulation in the local area.

Of the five points on each foot and hand, there is a very large and powerful point called “Kurcha”. It is particularly associated with the flow of prana to the head area. One of the major functions of Kurcha involves the health of the sense organs, especially the eyes and the ears. Other functions include relieving mental stress and aiding mental acuity. Working Kurcha can also help digestive processes.

The location of the Kurcha marma is interesting when you consider its involvement with eye and ear functioning, Kurcha is probably best described as an area rather than a point. The primary area for working this point is beside and over the first metacarpophalangeal (MTP) joint. However, according to Professor, Dr. Avinash Lele, co-author of “Ayurveda and Marma Therapy”, Kurcha extends across the feet and hands at the base of the toes and fingers…..just where Eunice Ingham advised us to work when helping with eye and ear problems!

There are important guidelines to be followed when working marma points. It is important that an appropriate lubricant is used, as working the points “dry” can have an adverse effect. As a general rule, when working foot and hand marmas, the corresponding marmas on both limbs are worked in the same session. There are many techniques for working the marmas, and all involve working with care and sensitivity. Marma therapy is powerful and is best learnt from an experienced professional.

Reflexologists are already working marma points whether they know it or not. However, with further knowledge of the marmas and the correct working techniques, they have the potential to significantly increase the effectiveness of their foot and hand work.

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