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Ion Cords


If I wanted to open the yin wei meridian, I would needle pc6, the rest of the points I intend to use then close with sp4. To open the chong, the same thing but reversed. I have some ion cords, using the example of the yin wei, would I put the black clip on pc 6 or the red? Thanks a lot.


Hello Guest,

There are many schools of thought regarding the use of the ion pumping cords. The ion pumping cords were developed by a Japanese physician, Dr. Manaka, to be used within his own treatments. While he certainly was flexible within his own practice, people who use the ion cords generally follow his protocol where they are used as a root treatment (i.e. generally without other needles inserted when the cords are on). You should consult the Yin Wei Chong Mai treatment page for the symptoms, signs and treatment protocol for this pattern. In this pattern the Black clip is generally on PC 6 and the Red clip is on SP 4.

That said, Kiiko Matsumoto has other ways of using the cords which we are not entirely familiar with and there are many people who use them within other protocols based on clinical experience. Generally, as in the Japanese treatments, even when there is a prescribed cord pattern you always consult changes in the pulse and the abdomen before you decide whether or not the leads are in the correct place for that person at that time. In other words, even with the Manaka treatments the cords can be reversed.

I hope this helps to answer your question.

Yin Yang House Acupuncture & Energy Healing Clinic


funny, you mention Kiko, she told me personally when I bought the cords from her that you put the black on the master point and the red on the coupled or the opposite of that - I forget! So, in my example, if I needled pc6 1st and then the rest of the treatment and then closed with sp4 that would open the yin wei meridian, thus the pc6 would be the master point and sp4 would be the coupled. Any suggestions for which gets the red or black? The page you referred me to doesn't make any sense to me, the Japanese rely so much on experiental treatment, that I'm sure those palpation methods get good results, only the symptomology doesn't jive with the 8 vessel symptology that I have been researching lately from the classics. Thanks again.


Hopefully some other people may be able to offer their opinions. As we stated earlier, there are no hard and fast rules to the setting up of polarities with ion pumping cords or other devices such as magnets. Our training is largely derived from the works of Dr. Manaka and Stephen Birch and the information on our site is drawn from their work. In general, they consider needling other points while the master/couple points are connected with the ion cords a bad thing and mention in their texts that your patients may experience unfavorable results.

To explain the site, the shot of the abdomen is essentially where you would find palpable pressure pain and this, not the symptoms, is the primary indicator for which EV treatment you would choose. Once you have your abdomen diagnosis you would (1) treat the pair , usually bilaterally, as specified and leave the cords on for roughly 10 minutes. You should notice at least some change in the abdomen (some spots becoming less painful), then (2) remove the cords and needles and then needle the corresponding shu points (with moxa where applicable). So if you had needled PC 6 and SP 4 you would needle the PC Shu (UB 13) and the SP Shu (UB 20). These are retained for 5-15 minutes and then you may perform 3 rounds of moxa bilaterally on the heads of the needles where moxa is appropriate (UB 20 in this case), then you would follow with some local treatment if necessary

For a complete discussion of the techniques behind the ion pumping cords, we would recommend three books (all on our Japanese Research page):

"Chasing the Dragons Tail" by Yoshio Manaka
"Hara Diagnosis" by Kiiko Matsumoto & Stephen Birch
& "Extraordinary Vessels" by Kiiko Matsumoto & Stephen Birch

Of course, you could always email Kiiko and ask her what she had told you - her contact information is on her website.

Yin Yang House Acupuncture & Energy Healing Clinic


Thanks for the respones, I had e mailed Kiko or her associate but they hadn't gotten back to me at the time I posted that message. David Euller from her company responded and said to put the black clip on the the master points. This confuses me some because in Kiko's 8 vessel book many magnet treatments are described and the positive magnet or copped needle seems to usually go on the master point. In the spirit of Manaka's eclectic style, I wish to combine the ion cords with some other styles and techniques, however the side-effects thing scares me a little so I may do more research first...Thanks again


Some more on the Ion Pumping Cord thing.
The very short and simple answer is as follows.
Manaka developed his IPC protocols to be combined with his specific abdominal reflex and
release feedback systems. If you are not planning to use them, then don't use the IPC's for treatment of extraordinary vessels. If you intend to use the exta vessels according to your symptomatic understanding of them or systemic understanding of them from general acupuncture theory, then forget about the IPC's and just use needles. It is really that simple.

You have to very careful in cross-hybridising magnet, copper needle type ideas with IPC ideas.
They are very different. Think about it for a minute. When you place magnets, N and S on master and couple points of EV's, the gradient you are establishing is only on the skin surface and only in one direction.

When you insert needles and attach IPC's, you actually have two circuits set up. On flows through the cords above the body and the other to countercompensate runs just below the skin surface in the opposite direction. Consequently, you cannot assume that the red clip is 'the same as' copper or south magnet or whatever.

You have to view the IPC approach is a thing unto itself.

but again, if you intention is to use the EV's according to their theoretical underpinnings as described in any basic TCM text, then just use needles and forget about IPC's.

Daniel Schulman


Thanks for the answer. I know that they are different than magnets otherwise I would just copy the magnet treatments and apply them to the cords. Your comments make sense but do not take into account the Kawaii and Masamoto styles of use. Saftey 1st is my priority. As I said before, in the spirit af Manaka I am making an attemp to hybridize some concepts. Rest assured I will test these new theories on myself and not a patient. Thanks again,


To the best of my knowledge, Matsumoto only uses IPC's for Extra Vessel treatments based on two of her teachers, Manaka and Kawai. In Manaka's case, he always recommended trying black clip on master points of Yin Wei and Yang Wei first as he felt this minimised the likelihood of inducing counterflow Qi. He was not, however, against reversing this as a second attempt to achieve abdominal release if the first attempt did not succeed.
The Kawai EV treatments that Kiiko teaches are all what he calls 'infinity' treatments because the cords are always crossed (to make an infinity symbol). In those cases, Kiiko teaches that it is imperative to ALWAYS have both red clips on the left side of the body - I have never understood her explanation for this imperative which has something to do with 'Big Ming Men' and 'Little Ming Men', but it seems to be taught as something that is non-negotiable. But as with Manaka treatments, the 4 Kawai infinity treatments are each associated with very specific abdominal patterns which must release during treatment for the treatment to be considered valid or useful.

On other thing about IPC's I can't caution enough about - if you don't have one, get a 'tester' and check them regularly, I do once a month at least. The connections often break without you knowing it!


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