Qiological Community

K3 needling direction

Hi, I’m wondering if kidney 3 reducing is needled in the direction of Kidney 2, or would it be straight down toward the bottom of the heel?

Thank you : )


Kidney 3 reduced is directed toward K2. Toby likes to put a finger on K2 to give the needle a target-not that you have to thread that far.
Hope that helps.

1 Like

Hi Kristin,
Hope all is well. Quick question.

Do you think that in the case of excessive Beng Lou as a result of SI/HT+

Needling KD Supplementation points and directing the needle to KD-4 would actually make it worse as effectively tonifying rather than reducing the KD-3 point?

Hmm. Once can’t say for sure what the impact will be if one out of the 4 points are needled in the opposite direction.
As practitioners, we are responsible for correct diagnosis and correct treatment. When a treatment goes south, it is best to consider both factors. It won’t hurt to look at the patient’s diagnosis as well as considering the incorrect needling.


Many thanks Kristin. I’ll look into it a bit more.

I thought we were never supposed to reduce HT or KID? Is this a matter of semantics? Are “reducing” and “Draining” different mechanisms in this context or system?

I think you are the victim of ambiguous synonyms and points to the need for us to select consistent terms for when we talk about channel vs a point. In Toby’s original JCM article from Feb 2018 he uses the term of supplementing or draining describing our treatment of a channel. When we talk about points we have been generally using the term tonifying or reducing/sedating a point. But I have heard various permutations on terms.

All 4 points on a selected channel that we supplement have 2 tonfifying and 2 reducing points. KI3 is reduced/sedated for a KI channel supplementation.

In addition I believe there has been ambiguity leading to confusion among more recent practitioners (we are all newbies here) when one conveys an excess channel with a “+”. For example the patient craves sweets, overweight, eats Pringles while surfing 541 channels and sweats easily but in a case writeup SP excess is written as “SP+”. My SJ excess really wants us to save “+” “-” for supplementing/draining treatment of the channel. When we are talking about diagnosis I feel we should use the word “excess”.


Thank you got your response, George! (SJ excess over here as well :wink:
So just to clarify, because I’m still not sure I get it: you’re saying that it’s okay to reduce a kidney point in a set of four sa’am points in a protocol because it’s actually tonifying the kidney, (for instance, in the case of supplementing Kid channel, we reduce Kid-3, because it’s part of a set of balancing points.) But I would never want to reduce Kid-3 on its own?? Or a Ht point or even a PC point, for that matter?

I also agree with your preference for changing the note-taking! It’s confusing.

Thanks for your help!

Wait, I think I get it now: never reduce HT or KID channels. That’s what I think you were trying to explain in your message to me. Correct me if I’m wrong, though! Thanks :slight_smile:

Yes that is what I attempted to convey.
It is confusing. I am finding that I prefer to say we supplement or drain for channels.
Tonify or sedate/reduce for points.
I am probably being a bit too nerdy.

Yay, I get it now! Thank you for explaining :blush:

HI @Katupuncture
Welcome to the Saam discussion group!

Yes, this can be a bit confusing.
Here’s my take…

We use the channels and the various points to influence the Organ.
And I find it really helpful for myself to use the full name of the Organ.
For example the Lung is Taiyin, Metal, Lung
The Liver is Jueyin, Wood, Liver

Keeping my eye on all the correspondences at once helps me to see the qi transform that I want to facilitate.

In essence when tonify the KD we are boosting up the mother of yin water (that’s yin metal) on both the mother channel and the KD channel itself.
Doing this fully brings the yin metal into yin water.

Then you turn off the control. Which is yin earth.
So you disperse yin earth on the Spleen channel, and the earth point of the KD.

From this perspective we see that even though we are using dispersing needles we are overall dramatically tonifying the KD.

With this method in mind we can tonify or disperse any Organ.

And as Toby suggests… never disperse the KD or HT.

Hope that helps

1 Like

Yes, I get it now. Thank you so much for your detailed response! Loving this forum and all the sa’am courses and discussion (and the podcast!).