Ashi Treatment for musculoskeletal conditions: Rearranging the landscape of the body with bodywork and acupuncture.

Course dates:

Saturday 25th& Sunday 26th June 2022

Please use the following Early Bird payment link to make payment and book your place on the course:

 – Early Bird (until 25th May) Price – £180 –

Normal price after 26th May– £200:


It is a great shame that Ashi treatment is often poorly understood, as it is an essential aspect of acupuncture treatment.

When done correctly, it can yield significant results remarkably quickly, often in just one or two sessions – even for chronic conditions.

Ashi treatment, as taught to us by Andrew Nugent-Head, is the bulk of physical treatment that we do. Most of our referrals at Yi Dao Clinic come from successful Ashi work, and we regularly receive GP referrals for physical conditions for it.

This course was set up as we hope to spread the usage of high-quality Ashi work in the UK. At the end of it, participants will have the understanding and skill to perform simple Ashi treatments and start building up experience of using this remarkable way of treating.


Course Material: 

There are several Ashi techniques and skills that should be mastered and then combined for an effective treatment.

DaoYin exercises. We will start with instruction on specific DaoYin exercises and will de-mystify and illustrate how these exercises help develop our sensitivity to Qi and our ability to manipulate it. This instruction is vital to developing good hand and needle skill. 

Palpation. This is in our opinion by far the most important skill that a practitioner can develop. We will practice identifying Ashi points and areas on the body. We will discuss what constitues an ‘injury’ and how to manually feel for imbalances in the body.

Sparrow Pecking Technique. Perhaps the most well known of the Ashi needle techniques.

Spreading Needle Technique. When using Spreading Technique, the aim is to release Qi trapped in a local area causing buildup there. This is a gentle technique used to release tension slowly in a soothing manner.

Gathering Needle Technique. Gathering Technique is used when we want to bring Qi and Blood to a local area. This may be an end in itself, or in preparation for using another technique such as sparrow-pecking.


We will also cover 3 bodywork techniques: Point Pressing, Traction, and Deep Qi with Vibrating.

Point Pressing is the manipulation of a point using our fingers only.

Traction is a physical manipulation which gently lengthens the musculoskeletal system, allowing it to relax and reset. Of great importance is the skill of “riding the traction”, ie feeling the body as it lengthens and releases and constantly adjusting the traction to keep it at the optimal level. Correct traction is a deeply relaxing and soothing experience for the patient as their whole body can reset.

Deep Qi. This is a deeply settling technique which puts the patient into a very relaxed, lulled state. Often patients will comment that this is their favourite part of the treatment! We will learn how to practice this technique on different body areas with added vibrating.

Joint Mobilisations. Not to be confused with the rapid manipulations performed by chiropractors or osteopaths. Appropriate joint mobilisation following needling or heavy bodywork is essential for successful Ashi treatments.

Course teachers: Zarig and Conny Cooper.

Conny and Zarig Cooper are practitioners of over 15 years each, who have a particular interest in providing tangible, effective treatments in clinic. They are senior students of Andrew Nugent-Head from the Association for Traditional Studies. After attending all his London programmes and doing 300 hours of clinical observations with him, they started assisting at his seminars, supporting his teachings in various European locations. They have been teaching their own courses in London since 2019, with consistently excellent feedback.

Conny uses her background as a Tai Chi teacher to clarify the actual links between Qi Gong/Daoyin and the practice of acupuncture. Understanding how the various Daoyin practices improve the effectiveness of the different needle techniques is an essential part of this course.

Zarig is an exceptional bodyworker and acupuncturist who combines both sensitivity and strength in his practice. His ashi skills have earned him the nickname “the magician” from several personal trainers who regularly refer their clients to him. He has been active for the last 7 years in teaching acupuncture and Tuina courses to improve practitioners’ practical skills.

Participants: Practitioners or students of acupuncture.

Course dates: Saturday 25th & Sunday 26th June

Both days run 10am-5pm, with an hour for lunch.

Venue: The City College of Acupuncture, University House, 55 East Road, London N1 6AH

Cost: Earlybird is £180 for the 2-day course if paid by 25th May, after that £200.


Please use the following Early Bird payment link to make payment and book your place on the course:

 – Early Bird (until 25th May) Price – £180 –

Refunds possible up to 1 month before start of course, after that fee is non-refundable.


Clinical Case examples:

1.   A 61-year old woman presents with constant lower back pain which she has had for many years. She takes painkillers every morning for it. MRI shows spinal stenosis, recommended treatment by consultants is steroid injection, if this is unsuccessful they recommend surgery. We do one Ashi treatment.
Feedback from patient a week later at follow-up: the pain nearly disappeared the day after the treatment. She hasn’t needed a painkiller since, has been able to exercise and lead a normal life. She is thrilled!


2.   A 25-year old man presents with acute lower back pain from lifting free weights at the gym. He has very little mobility, the pain is constant, rated 10/10. He has seen an osteopath who suspected a slipped disc and recommended an MRI. We do an Ashi treatment.

At follow-up 3 days later, the pain is 50% better. He is able to sleep and move around. The patient is relieved as it is obviously not a disc injury and the MRI is not necessary. We do another Ashi treatment.

At follow-up 4 days later, he reports the pain is 95% gone.


3.   A 72-year old woman presents with pain in her right shoulder, which started after a fall a year previously and has been getting progressively worse. The pain is now constant, rated 9/10, makes her want to cry. She takes regular painkillers. NHS Physiotherapy has not been helpful.

After one Ashi treatment, the pain is reduced. After a second treatment, the pain has become only occasional, rated 3/10. The patient is very happy as this is something she can live with and decides to not pursue further treatment.