Ani marma is one of the delicate and vital points of the body located in the upper extremity. By its stimulation, it opens the energy channels in the body that provides physical and psychological relaxation, and strength to the arms. Proper stimulation of this marma can cure edema and inflammation in upper limbs along with increased work efficiency of thorax organs like heart, lungs, oesophagus.
Width / size of ani marma: Ardh angula (Half finger unit)
Type of marma: Snayu marma (ligamentous marma)
Number of marma: 2 (one on each arm)
Benefits of stimulating ani marma
Ani marma is a vakalyakara marma, i.e. it is a disability-causing marma if there is severe injury on it and is closely related to muscles, nerves and blood vessels. Therefore injury to this marma can impair extension of the arm, drawing of the arm forward and inward and restriction of the movement of the whole joint. Injury to the nerve may cause complete paralysis of the arm and injury to the artery may cause severe bleeding. In the conditions like Golfer’s elbow, tennis elbow, muscle wasting or bicipital tendinitis, there is pain while moving the arms or while making a fist and stiffness in the elbow joint. Also in cases of supra chondral fractures, after removing the cast when fractures have healed, there is generally stiffness in the elbow joint. So in such cases we can stimulate the ani marma for better or early recovery from the joint stiffness/pain. According to ayurveda, ani marma also controls the channels of water metabolism (Udakavaha Srotas) and various functions of kidneys. So, for better renal outflow, ani marma can be stimulated.
Technique of stimulation of ani marma
Locating the marma site: According to Acharya Sushruta, ani marma is one of the eleven marmas of the upper extremity. The marma is located three finger breadth above the elbow joint. Anatomically, it is located in the medial aspect of the arm, two finger units proximal to the medial epicondyle of the humerus. The marma is closely related to the biceps muscles, coracobrachialis, median and ulnar nerve, brachial artery and vein. For analysing the marma site, first draw a line over the elbow crease by keeping the elbow slightly flexed and not completely extended. The muscles get stout when in extended state. Then draw a straight perpendicular line from the midline centre of the elbow crease. Mark a point three fingers breadth above the elbow crease on the straight perpendicular line. Here, finger breadth should be measured with the patient finger only. Now draw a line from this point to one finger breadth medially. This achieved point is the site of ani marma.
Stimulation by practitioner: Hold the arm of the patient with the four fingers and with the pulp of the thumb, stimulate the ani marma by applying moderate pressure. Since it is a snayu marma, the pressure applied should not be hard or too moderate. It is appropriate to press the marma point when you are exhaling and release when you are inhaling. When you stimulate the ani marma, keep the face of palm upwards. Usually this marma point is very painful and initially one can feel severe pain at this site. But the pain decreases after two or three days spontaneously.
Determining the pressure to stimulate the ani marma: To stimulate any marma, direction of pressure plays an important role for the marma to be effective. For stimulation of ani marma, the direction of pressure should not be downwards nor posterior. So, to determine the direction, make an imaginary line posteriorly in the midline. Apply pressure from the marma point towards this imaginary line. The pressure applied is intermittent in nature rather than the continuous pressure. The whole press and release action will take approximately 3 secs. The marma point is stimulated for 18-20 times per sitting, so the overall time taken is approximately 75 seconds.
Ani marma is considered important in self care and self healing practices. By practicing the marma at home, the stiff muscles can be relieved and the circulation of the arm can be boosted.