New introduction!

The idea of the Point of the Week posts is to stimulate discussion of the manipulation and application of a specific PP in actual combat. The PP's are workable within all MA systems and their study will greatly enhance the effectiveness of ALL arts. However, you must first have an advanced understanding of your art before you begin looking at PP's!

Here is a basic guide to PP attacks. Please pay close attention to the Safety section.

Stomach 9/ST9 or Ren Ying (Man's Welcome)

This weeks point is Stomach 9 or ST9 for short. It is located on the earth meridian and is of Yang polarity according to TCM theory. It is located in the neck here.

This point is listed in the Bubushi's list of 36 Vital Points, and is probably one of the most dangerous places to strike in the entire human body.


I am not normally an alarmist, but this point is extremely dangerous, and MUST be trained using extreme caution. Before we go into how to attack I'd like to cover the affect of attacking this point will have on the body.

Leaving pressure points aside and without blinding you with medical terminology, I'll briefly describe will happens when this point is attacked. This is where the carotid sinus nerve lives. By attacking this point you artificially trigger a carotid sinus reflex. Naturally this reflex is a trigger in response to high blood pressure and will result in bradycardia (the heart rate dropping below 60 beats per minute) and a drop of blood pressure. Paramedics use a technique called a "Carotid Massage" where gentle pressure is applied to this point for a period of 5 seconds on each side of the neck once a minute. This is used to help regulate dangerously high blood pressure by dilating the blood vessels and thus lowering the blood pressure. It doesn't take a genius to work out the effect of over stimulation.

Other dangers associated with this point include the potential rupturing of the carotid artery or trachea (windpipe) which could easily lead to death.

With an understanding of the dangers of using this point, we will now look at how to attack it. This point will respond to either pressing or sharp striking directly into the neck at a 90 degree angle towards the spine.

To strike this point to cause maximum damage will require a sharp narrow weapon such as a spear hand or single knuckle strike. This method of striking should only be used into extreme life or death circumstances due to the high risk of death with a relatively low impact trauma.

This point will respond well to a large blunt impact, such as a forearm smash, which will cause extreme internal shock and disorientation. Again, caution must be used to avoid accidental damage to the trachea.

A far more humane and safer method of attack to this point is by pressing into this point using the fingers. This will cause intense localised pain and if squeezed for a prolonged period of time will lower the blood pressure to the point of unconsciousness and eventually death. Pressing in and up towards the back of the skull will cause the recipient to raise up on the balls of their feet away from the pain. Pressing in and down towards the floor will drop them.


Obviously the ways in which this point could be struck are endless. The following applications are not exhaustive, they are simply presented to stimulate thought and provide possible applications.

I will not cover the obvious striking applications of this point; any experienced Martial Artist worth their salt knows how to use a spear hand.

The pressing method of attack on this point makes it ideal to use in close quarter combat. From a clinch, if you can reach in and pinch this point it will create intense pain and thus movement. Holding on will eventually render the attacker unconscious.

Again from the clinch driving the fingers into this point create extreme pain. Combined with the directional information mentioned above make this extremely effective when attempting to create movement.

The last application I'll cover is using the Karate Jodan Uke or head block. Driving a Jodan Uke straight into this point is extremely effective at delivering shock into your opponent, and combined with a hikite on a attackers punching hand will add hugely to the overall effect of the strike.


Again, please please take the time to understand the effects of this point and appreciate how dangerous it is. For those who use this point in KO demo's please take a moment to read this article by Erle Montaigue and scroll down to the comments by Professor McCleod. The whole article is interesting, but the commentary on ST9 should definitely be read!

Edited by oldman (09/20/05 07:22 PM)