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I invited myself to a “barbeque” last night. Well it was sort of a “barbeque” except I was the main course. Now before you think that I might have some sort of death wish, let me clarify.

Come on baby light my fire

A few days ago I got out of bed and felt a long absent but familiar twitch in my lower back. The dull ache continued over the next few days and was gradually becoming worse. Dinner at a Japanese restaurant last night meant sitting for a relatively extended period without back support. You can guess what transpired next.

Our traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) physical therapist who was also with us during dinner noted my discomfort and made a few comments along the lines of “What the heck are you waiting for?” This meant a late night sojourn back to our therapy centre for some emergency work.

The therapist started probing my lower back for a few minutes and then proceeded to inform me that this was not a new injury.

I had, in fact, strained my lower back some time in March and was stuck walking with my back bent forward at an 80 degree angle for weeks. A few trips to the local hospital ended up with nothing more than a prescription of painkillers and analgesic cream.

I wised up after the third week of pain and went to visit a TCM doctor. The doctor stuck two needles to my back and another one right in between my eyes. I could stand up normally within three days. Unfortunately, what I did not do was go back for follow-up therapies. That meant my lower back problem was an accident waiting to happen.

Coming back to the present moment, the therapist told me that my meridian channels along that side of my back was pretty stagnated and then proceeded to use a series of kneads and pulls along the right side of my lower back and calf.

This part of the therapy is called Tuina, an ancient bodywork therapy that does a pretty good job in clearing some of the stagnation thereby allowing the body the naturally heal itself.

I then had a set of glass cups being set alight and then placed on my back and calf. Nope, this isn’t where I became the main course for the “barbeque” yet. This is Ba Guan, another ancient form of therapy that extracts impurities within the body through the skin and blood.

Now the “barbeque” begins. The final touch was the Huo Long therapy, also known as Fire Dragon Therapy, Tibetan Fire Therapy or simply thermotherapy. This is how I looked like while I was being “barbequed” … and yes … there was an audience:

Huo Long therapy on my back

Huo Long therapy on calf

Huo Long is an ancient form of heat therapy that originates from Tibet.

Al lot of health problems relate to micro-circulation deficiency. At the capillary level, the blood stagnates causing toxins to accumulate. Huo Long helps remove these stagnated toxins by improving one’s micro-circulation.

People with chronic pain conditions, functional disorders, or a variety of stress related illnesses can benefit from Huo Long.

In the majority of those chronic conditions, the sufferers have what they call in traditional Chinese medical theory a “cold constitution”. This is true even for sufferers who may be exhibiting “heat-like” symptoms as the body attempts to balance the “cold constitution” by generating “heatiness”.

In my case, apart from my backache, I was also starting to show some initial signs of catching a cold. So Huo Long seemed like a good bet.

The treatment did not hurt, although it did feel warm.

So what was the nett result of last night’s experience? For starters, the ache on my lower back subsided quite substantially and remains so up to now. My cold symptoms dissipated almost immediately after the Huo Long therapy. Oh yes, I also slept like a baby last night – which is something quite uncommon as my wife will attest.

Not too bad for a set of treatments that set me back just a shave above RM 100.


Come On Baby Light My Fire
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