Marma is considered as vital points spread in the body it denotes ‘energy in the body’, ‘life energy’. The places where life energy lies hidden are Marma points. Stimulation of these points by different means to cure a disease is called marma chikitsa or marma medicine. It serves as the causal bridge energy bridge that links the physical body to the subtle body. Stimulation can be done in many ways like different kinds of massages, sudation, bandage, thermal application, pressure application, needling, bloodletting, etc. Among these marma massage is more popular with its importance to orthopedic and neuromuscular disease management.
Marma points are considered as the seat of prana, energy. So these are the points where we can touch the internal energy very easily, this could be stopped as well as promoted, stopping can cause loss of function and promotion can cause correction of the part. So either way, these points are important. Acidosis, Oxidation, and inflammation are seen as the cause of a metabolic disease or lifestyle disease. this can be interpreted as functions of VATA, PITHA and KAPHA in the body. All these factors on increase will affect the circulation system in the body, and if it is being accumulated can cause a disease of that area. Marma massage is one way to make flush out these accumulated doshas or acidosis, oxidation, and inflammatory factors and make a cure or help in the prevention of disease in the body.
In my experience the marma therapy have found useful in treating various neuromuscular diseases like MND, Paraplegia, Parkinson’s, MS, etc and orthopedic complaints like joint dislocations, arthritis, frozen shoulder, disc prolapse, tennis elbow, ligament injuries, carpal tunnel syndrome, fibromyalgia, scoliosis, etc. This is also found useful in treating acute conditions like headache low back pain, heel pain, etc. As marma points are also considered as points where good energy exchange is occurring external applications like herbal paste, oil, and bandages are done which can be utilized in treating many diseases caused by blockage of increased doshas.
Marmas are linked by channels called nadis, so they make a network in the body. Knowledge of the Nadi help us in diagnosing a disease, also help to cure the disease which is deeply situated in the body. Correction of the Nadi channels is mainly done by massage which is more popular in South India. This is also linked with the martial art of Kerala, KALARI. In many parts of India, the marma massage is also known as Kalari massage, those people who are more indulged in these martial arts are prone to get injuries, and also they need to keep their body fit which made this massages more popular among them. Different schools propagate different names for marmas, but this can be anatomically correlated to those mentioned in the Ayurveda classical textbooks, Ashtanga Hrudaya, Sushruta Samhita etc.