The legs, our lower limbs, in Chinese medicine represent the possibility of moving towards a goal and therefore indicate the possibility of choosing, changing or remaining that is inherent in each of us. We better discover the disorders that can affect them and how to treat them.
Anatomical description of the legs
The legs, or lower limbs, are similar in structure to the upper limbs. They connect to the pelvis because each bone of the hip is articulated with the head of a femur, the bone of the thigh. In turn the trochlea of the femur is distal articulated with the tibia and the patella or patella . Together, these bones form the knee joint that allows for fluxes and extensions not beyond the femoral line. The cartilaginous body called meniscus helps to give stability to the joint.
The tibia is a long and slightly curved bone; the fibula, much longer but thinner, articulates with the tibia but does not reach the knee. Distally these two long bones form, with the short bones of the tarsus, the tibio-tarsal or ankle joint. As in the case of the carpal bones of the hands, the bones of the tarsus of the foot are also organized in two rows: an aposterior and an anterior with scaphoid, cuboid and three cuneiform bones; they are articulated to the 5 bones of the metatarsus . The phalanges are homologous in number and shape to the corresponding bones of the hands, but decrease in volume starting from the second finger.
The muscles of the pelvis and lower limbs are divided into four groups according to the part of the limb in which they have the insertion: muscles of the hip (internal and external), of the thigh (anterolateral and posteromedial), of the leg (anterior, lateral and posterior), of the foot (dorsal and plantar).
Treatments and natural therapies for the legs
RLS is Restless Legs Syndrome, a neurological disorder that can affect between 5 and 10% of the population, consisting of a strong need to move the legs, a need that can become unstoppable and be accompanied by unpleasant sensations which often worsen when the affected person is at rest.
The treatments of this type of disease are many and go to act on different spheres: as regards diet and nutrition, it will be useful to increase the consumption of foods rich in iron and vitamins or to introduce food supplements of iron, vitamin B12 or acid folic (as needed). In general, we also tend to review daytime habits in order to improve mental and physical state at night and thus learn to sleep well, avoiding sleep disorders such as insomnia or sleep apnea. Great results are also obtained with various massage techniques.
Excellent for blood circulation in the legs are:
An excellent ally of the legs is argan oil. You can also use herbal creams and preparations based on essential oils that contain important nutritional factors for the skin such as lemon essential oil. In the case of minor burns, burns or wounds to the legs, lavender essential oil allows the skin to return quickly to the state prior to ulceration.
Unusual exercises to firm up the legs
In the universe of yoga, if we talk about legs, we cannot fail to enter the "lotus flower", the most famous preparatory position, which sees the legs crossed, the back erect and the hands on the knees. The position is also known by the Sanskrit name of Padmāsana or Yogâsana, but is also referred to as Mukta-padmâsana ie "open lotus" to distinguish it from Baddha-padmâsana, position of the "bound lotus", in which the arms are crossed behind the back with the right hand grasping the left foot and vice versa.
The body becomes a sort of pyramid with a triangular base, the weight of the head is perceived and the neck is released, while the breathing is articulated in different moments: the shoulders are raised breathing in, the breath is held and is released suddenly to relax the shoulder joint; while inhaling, the head and neck extenders stretch, exhaling, relax the head forward. The mudra held in this position is usually Jñâna mudrâ .
There are also many positions in yoga that serve to relax the back and are carried out by bringing the legs up; for example Viparita Karani, through which the lumbar muscles are relaxed, bringing the legs up against the wall.
Traditional Chinese Medicine
In traditional Chinese medicine the body is full of channels through which energy flows, like an enormous paddy field crossed by water. The meridia are the paths of this energy. Acupuncture works on meridians that control specific functions (circulation, respiration, digestion) and specific organs.
Through the legs passes the Chong Mai, which is the basis of the mutations of the body and the psyche in the different phases of existence.
If we think of adolescent acne, weight gain after marriage, menopausal disorders, these are all events that involve the Chong Mai channel. This extraordinary channel is also called "sea of blood" ; in man it helps promote the growth of beards and mustaches, while in women it regulates the menstrual cycle. Furthermore the Chong Mai directs the Yuan Qi (original Energy of the Kidneys) towards the Viscera and the Organs; all serious or chronic diseases can affect this very important channel.
Symbolically, in Chinese medicine the legs represent the possibility of moving towards a goal, meaning meaning, in a broad sense, the possibility of choosing, changing, staying and going which is inherent in each of us. The tendon-muscle channels or muscle channels ( Jing Jin ) of the arms and legs together control the digestive system and the autonomic nervous system .
Osteopathy acts on the pain of the legs with specific manipulative treatments . A qualified osteopathy first carries out a detailed anamnesis to then understand in front of what kind of disorder is found or to understand how it can act towards motor rehabilitation in case of post-traumatic pain. The osteopath works on the whole structure, so his surgery always covers shoulders, back, head, arms, as well as the legs. For an osteopath the body is much more than a sum of parts and that is why even a pain in the legs is brought back to a diagnostic and therapeutic approach for which the patient is a global functional unit.
If we think of "dynamic natural remedies", or what we can do to give wellness to our body by moving it, various gymnastic exercises will be useful for the legs, to which we can dedicate even just 20 minutes a day. We suggest a few:
- Lie on your back, your legs resting on a chair. Contract the abdominal muscles, count to five, repeat ten times, pause, repeat for three series;
- On his stomach, legs resting on a chair. Lift the upper body by contracting the abdominals. Three sets of five contractions;
- Lie on your back, pull your knee towards your shoulder. Holding the knee, count to ten, bring the leg down, pause, repeat ten times and do the other leg again;
- On his stomach, pelvis resting on a pillow. Lift your head up and up as far as you can then go back down to the floor. Repeat ten times, pause and complete three complete sets.
We also suggest the so-called "Spartan bow", an exercise to improve the stability of the legs.
Pilates, water sports are very useful disciplines for the mobility of the lower back and legs. Special attention goes to the knees if you love mountain sports like skiing.
Curiosity on the legs
The resources that can be found on the net on the legs have something extraordinary and unpredictable: from blogs that have legs as the only argument, to the reputable Sabrina Salerno and Jo Squillo in "Siamo donne" (besides the legs there's more ) who performed in Sanremo in 1991.