For those of you who read my post about stress being bad for your libido (sex drive), here are some solutions you can try at home. Acupressure massage is a great way to do some self-care if you can’t make it to your acupuncturist. Acupressure massage is also great because you can do it alone or have your partner do it to you as a daily intimacy-building exercise or as part of foreplay.
A quick note about pressure… everyone interprets touch differently, so you’re going to have to find what’s comfortable for you (or your partner). That said, the pressure you apply to acupuncture points should be more than a regular touch, but not so strong as to be painful. When I mention a specific point, you’re going to want to use a technique called “round rubbing,” which means putting your finger on a point, applying moderate pressure and massage in little circles on the same spot. When I mention a region, you’re going to use a technique called pushing, which means you use the flat of the hand or side of a closed first to create a wider surface with which to apply pressure.
If you were doing this massage as an intimacy-building exercise or part of foreplay, you could incorporation sensual touch as you move between the points or stroke gently back and forth between the points with round rubbing mixed in. Do what feels comfortable to you and your partner. Just because acupressure is a wellness exercise doesn’t mean it has to feel medical or sterile. Our skin, and especially the skin on our fingers, is packed with nerves, so this is a good way to be present together in the moment and to connect on a physical level. Be sure to include lots of eye contact, too. In Chinese medicine, our spirits connect when we make eye contact. Feeling connected on that level is a great way to feel a sense of intimacy.
Massage the Kidney Organ
The first place you’re going to massage is the lower back. You’re going to need to locate four landmarks to find the right part of the back to massage. The first is the spine at the midline. The second is the large band of muscle that runs bottom to top parallel to the spine, specifically the outer edge of this band of muscle, furthest from the spine. The third is the lowest rib. The fourth is your sacrum and pelvis.
You’re going to massage in downward strokes, meaning you start just under the last rib and massage downward only to the top edge of the sacrum and pelvis. When you get to the pelvis, lift your hands and come back to the ribs. You’re going to stay between the spine and the outside border of the paraspinal muscles that you located in step two above.
Invigorate the Kidney Channel
Find the inner ankle bones (the ones that face the opposite foot rather than the ones the face out into the world). Move your finger into the depression directly behind this between the bone and the achilles tendon. Round rub in this area. The main point here is Kidney-3, which is the source energy acupuncture point for the kidney channel, but there are many others right around here that will benefit from the massage. Next, move to the sole of the foot. Find the depression at the front end of the arch right behind the ball of the foot. This is Kidney-1, which is named after a bubbling wellspring. Round rub here too. If you’re giving a more sensual massage, this is a good point to work into a full foot massage. Use a scented massage oil that makes you feel romantic, like the ones found at Mountain Rose, rather than something minty, which is better for tired and sore feet. Also, misplaced minty massage oil is not friendly to other tender parts one might touch while being romantic.
Awaken the Elixir Field
For this massage, you need to locate two landmarks. The bellybutton and then the top of the pubic bone, the front of the pelvis. First, gentle rub in a circle right around the bellybutton, about a quarter of an inch away from the bellybutton itself. Then move down to the middle of the top of the pubic bone and round rub at the top border. Then divide the space between that border and the bellybutton into fifths, round rubbing in each segment. You can also do a traveling massage (using the a gentle pushing technique) from the pubic bone to the bellybutton. If you feel a hollow or low spot along this line, spend some extra time round rubbing that depression.
Enlivening the Genitals
After the Elixir Field exercises, massage the tender or hollow spots along the thigh crease, where the leg meets the torso. After the crease, move onto the fronts of top of the thighs and gently push or brush inward to the inner thighs. The Liver and Kidney channels run here, and will enliven the area by circulating the Qi through the genitals along with the Elixir Field points. After the inner thighs, find the perineum, the skin between your genitals and anus. Round rub this area while also applying gentle pressure upwards into the torso. Finally, find your tailbone. Come inside the tailbone, between the tip of the bone and the anus, and apply round rubbing similarly to the perineum here. This is also a good set of exercises for use during foreplay.
Doing these exercise two to three times each week will help boost libido for those who have low sex drive. Regardless of how often you do these exercises as part of your self-care acupressure routine, you can use them whenever you want as part of your foreplay routine before sex with your partner.