In Ayurveda and Yoga it’s thought that there are special high-energy points along the Nadis (Pranic Energy Channels), that is, vital points, acupressure points or acupoints, in India commonly called Marma points. In the south of India, in the Indian Tamil Nadu state, they are rather called Varma points.
Marma Points are thought to be the “doors” or “windows” where Pranic Energy that runs (or flows) through the Nadis enters the physical body. In fact, they are seen as junction points in the body that connect energy and matter — subtle and physical body, or mind and body.
Nevertheless, depending on different Ayurvedic and Yogic texts, the make-up of physical Marma Points has been described dissimilarly. For instance, some sources claim that the physical locations of Marma Points are anatomical sites where muscles, veins, fascia, ligaments, bones and joints meet together.
Other sources state that Marma Points are locations where important nerves come together, along with other structures like muscles and tendons, including points on our body that are tender or painful.
In any case, each Marma Point has different effects on various parts of the body, bodily tissue, and on the internal organs, and corresponds to specific functions. Seven special Marma Points — the so-called Mahamarmas or Great Marmas — have major significance and correspond to the seven Chakras.
It’s thought that the knowledge of Marma Points came into existence because of Indian martial arts warriors in ancient times who used special points — Vital Points or Bindu — to disable or kill enemy fighters or, by contrast, to heal or speedup recovery from injuries.
Generally, 107 or 108 main Marma points are recognized, and they can be manipulated with, for instance, acupressure, cupping, stretches, needling, herbal medicine, Yoga Asanas, massage (such as Ayurvedic Marma Chikitsa) and Yogic exercises in order to cure or alleviate specific physical, mental, emotional and spiritual illnesses or discomforts.