This graphic shows the Marma points throughout the body. How many Marma points are in the body?

How Many Marma Points Are In The Body?

According to Ayurveda, a Marma point is a juncture point in the body where two or more types of tissue meet. These can include muscles or Mamsa, veins or Sira, ligaments or Snayu, bones or Asthi, and joints or Sandhi. How many Marma points are in the body? Let’s refer to the ancient Ayurvedic texts which describe Marma in detail.

Here’s what we’ll cover in this article.

Marma Points: The Seats Of Life
How Many Marma Points Are In The Body?
The Marma Points By Dosha
The Marma Points By Location
The Marma Points By Effect Of Injury To The Marma
Therapeutic Benefits Of Marma Points

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Marma Points: The Seats Of Life

Front view of marma points in the body. How many Marma points are in the body?

Marma has been described by several ancient Ayurvedic masters including Charak and Vagbhata, among others. The best description however is given by Sushruta, the ‘father of surgery’ in the Sushruta Samhita. He covered many aspects of anatomy and surgery in this text, written centuries ago, and Marma or vital points are among them. According to Sushruta, Marma points are the seats of life.

Marma are the places where the three doshas (Vata, Pitta and Kapha) are present, along with their subtle forms (Prana or vital force, Tejas or inner radiance and Ojas or essence of life). The three gunas of Satva (beingness), Rajas (activity) and Tamas (darkness) are also present.1

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How Many Marma Points Are In The Body?

Sushruta described 107 Marma points in the body.1

This ancient scholar was a surgeon so he knew and wrote about the importance of Marma or vital points while performing a surgery. A surgeon has to be careful of these vital points while performing surgery and use surgical instruments properly in order to avoid damage.

Marma points have therapeutic value. Marma therapy has physical, mental and spiritual benefits. In Marma therapy, external stimuli like gentle pressure or massage of the Marma is done for desired results.

Sushruta described a total of 107 Marma and classified them in three different ways.1 Though they are the same 107 points, he described them in three different contexts. Let’s take a closer look at how many marma points are in the body, where they are located and how they are classified.

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The Marma Points By Dosha

Here’s a breakdown of the 107 Marma points according to one’s constitution or, the predominant tissue or predominance of physical matrix present.2

  • There are 11 Marma points present in the muscle tissue. These are called Mamsa marma.
  • There are 41 Marma points predominant in the blood vessels. These are known as Sira marma.
  • There are 27 Marma points predominant in the ligaments and tendons. These are called Snayu marma.
  • There are 8 Marma points predominant in the bones. These are referred to as Asthi marma.
  • There are 20 Sandhi marmas, or Marma points predominant in the joints.

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The Marma Points By Location3

Lateral and back view of Marma points. How many Marma points are in the body?

How many Marma points are located in each part of the body?

  • There are 22 Marma points in both upper limbs (11 Marma in each upper limb).
  • There are 22 Marma points in both lower limbs (11 Marma in each lower limb).
  • There are 26 Marma points in the thorax and abdomen.
  • There are 37 Marma points located in the head and neck.

The Marma Points By Effect Of Injury To The Marma4

This classification was more suitable to ancient times when there were wars and fighting and people lived in forests and tribes.

In modern times, it is not really applicable as medical management of wounds and injuries has changed substantially with the advent of modern surgery, trauma management, lifesaving equipment, medicines and techniques.

However these Marma can be understood as ones which need to be protected from accidental injuries. If injured, these Marma warrant immediate medical attention and management to save mortality and morbidity.

How many Marma points are affected by injury to the Marma?

  • Sadhya pranahar marma, or Marmas with which, on getting inflicted with injury, cause instant death.
  • Kaalantar pranhar marma. If these Marma are injured then gradual and slow death occurs.
  • Vishalya ghana marma, then death can occur.
  • If these 44 Marma are injured, Vaikalyakar marma, deformity and pain can result.
  • If these 8 Marma are injured, Rujakara marma, pain occurs.

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Therapeutic Benefits Of Marma Points

Marma therapy along with other Ayurvedic therapies can be used for the following conditions. If you are in need of medical attention, please consult a qualified health care provider.

  • Detoxification (removal of toxins)6
  • Tonification of the skin6
  • Rejuvenation6
  • Self care6
  • It is claimed that Marma points can also be used to enhance mental and spiritual powers7
  • Pain relief8
  • Reducing stiffness8
  • Stopping tremors8
  • Relieving constipation8
  • Calming down anxiety8
  • Relieving stress8
  • Promoting sleep8
  • Removing acidity9
  • Cleansing the blood9
  • Detoxifying liver9
  • Countering infection9
  • Stopping inflammation9
  • Calming anger9
  • Helpful in reducing mucus9
  • Removing congestion9
  • Eliminating edema9
  • Promoting weight reduction9
  • Increasing physical and mental activity9
  • Maintaining the immune system10
  • Marma points are important factors in all yoga practices from physical postures to pranayam and meditation11

References
1. Sushruta Samhita with Hindi commentary by Kaviraj Ambikadutta Shastri, Part-1, page no. 67, Sharir Sathan 6/3, by Chaukhambha Sanskrit Sansthan, 2011.
2. Sushruta Samhita with Hindi commentary by Kaviraj Ambikadutta Shastri, Part-1, page no. 67,Sharir Sathan 6/4, by Chaukhambha Sanskrit Sansthan, 2011.
3. Sushruta Samhita with Hindi commentary by Kaviraj Ambikadutta Shastri, Part-1, page no. 67,Sharir Sathan 6/5, by Chaukhambha Sanskrit Sansthan, 2011.
4. Sushruta Samhita with Hindi commentary by Kaviraj Ambikadutta Shastri, Part-1, page no. 67, Sharir Sathan 6/8, by Chaukhambha Sanskrit Sansthan, 2011.
5. Ayurveda and Marma therapy, Energy points in yogic healing, page no. vi, by Dr. David Frawley, Dr. Subhash Ranade and Dr. Avinash Lele.
6. Ayurveda and Marma therapy, Energy points in yogic healing, page no. 5, by Dr. David Frawley, Dr. Subhash Ranade and Dr. Avinash Lele.
7. Ayurveda and Marma therapy, Energy points in yogic healing, page no. 7, by Dr. David Frawley, Dr. Subhash Ranade and Dr. Avinash Lele.
8. Ayurveda and Marma therapy, Energy points in yogic healing, page no. 20, by Dr. David Frawley, Dr. Subhash Ranade and Dr. Avinash Lele.
9. Ayurveda and Marma therapy, Energy points in yogic healing, page no. 21, by Dr. David Frawley, Dr. Subhash Ranade and Dr. Avinash Lele.
10. Ayurveda and Marma therapy, Energy points in yogic healing, page no. 34, by Dr. David Frawley, Dr. Subhash Ranade and Dr. Avinash Lele.
11. Ayurveda and Marma therapy, Energy points in yogic healing, page no. 48, by Dr. David Frawley, Dr. Subhash Ranade and Dr. Avinash Lele

 

 

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Alka Sharma graduated in Bachelor of Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery (BAMS) from Dayanand Ayurvedic College, Jalandhar, Punjab, India. She also completed a Masters in Health Care Services. Alka has been practicing as a general Ayurveda practitioner for the last 5 years.

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