About “Japanese Acupuncture” *
Acupuncture has a very long history going back over two thousand years to ancient China where it began. It was introduced into Japan over a thousand years ago, and over the centuries Japanese acupuncture has changed and evolved so that today it is very different from Chinese acupuncture.
Simply described, acupuncture is the insertion of very thin needles into the skin to treat a wide variety of conditions, including back pain, shoulder stiffness, knee joint and leg pain, headaches, sports injuries, and indefinite complaints. Many people also seek acupuncture treatment just for general health maintenance.
Acupuncture is also often combined with moxibustion in which small quantities of moxa, made from dried powdered mugwort, are placed on acupuncture points and burned to stimulate body systems.
Today, the field of Japanese acupuncture is overseen by The Japan Society of Acupuncture and Moxibustion (JSAM) which was recognized by and given corporate status by the Ministry of Education, Science and Culture in 1980.
JSAM claims to have about 5,000 members, including acupuncturists, physicians, dentists, and medical researchers. Training is mainly provided at four-year colleges or vocational colleges with curriculums based on a Western medicine model, and licenses are granted to those who pass national examinations for acupuncturists and moxibustionists.
*For more details regarding the history and practice of Japanese acupuncture, see “What is Acupuncture” on The JSAMs web site: en.jsam.jp/data/files/jsam..en.pdf