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The Barefoot Doctor healing techniques have mainly been identified as Chinese techniques used by the native healers of China. These practitioners would walk from village to village (thus, the name "barefoot" Doctors) and treat all manner of diseases using these tools. The Barefoot Doctor techniques include cupping, moxibustion, dermal hammer, scraping, needling, bleeding and massage. Barefoot Doctors were also skilled at bone setting.

Although they may sound like exotic Traditional Chinese Medicine therapies, these techniques are not native to just China. The Barefoot Doctor tools are actually folk remedies, which have been, and still are, used throughout most cultures in the world. Among the many cultures using some of these tools are Chile, Argentina, France, Germany, Poland, Turkey, Greece, Egypt, India, Bali, Java, Czech Republic, Russia, Iran, Mexico, Italy, Vietnam, Japan, China, Korea and several Native American Tribes of North and South America. People of these cultures have not only used them in the past, but many still practice them today, especially in rural areas. In fact, it is not unusual to meet people whose grandparents cupped them when sick with colds as a child. Thus, these techniques are universal folk remedies, which are ours to reclaim and begin using again.

One of the advantages of Barefoot Doctor techniques is not only their efficacy, but also their convenience. It is possible to perform all of these remedies with tools found in most homes. This makes them readily available wherever you may be. Of the seven traditional Chinese Barefoot Doctor techniques listed above, I will cover three here: cupping, moxibustion and scraping.