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.

Large intestine 4 / LI 4 Hegu

This weeks point is Large intestine 4 or LI4 for short. It is located on an Metal meridian and is of Yang polarity according to TCM theory. It is located on the radial aspect of the hand in the first dorsal interosseus muscle. Or see it at;

The point is said to be at the high point of the muscle when the thumb is pulled into the hand. This is the superficial point however if using the point to cause pain it is best to use the deeper point which is just radial to the second metacarpal, just across from the superficial point, this point causes a great deal more pain and pressure must be exerted between the muscle and the bone, (MC2)


I find that this point responds extremely well to grabs. I have been told that it can be used in striking but have yet to find anyone who has shown how in a live situation apart from when the hand is immobilised.

This is a yuan source point, therefore it has a direct effect on the whole body which explains its very common usage in acupuncture treatments.
In addition to this the large intestine is the yang organ coupled with the lungs being the yin organ, this means that the large intestine channel and points can be used to attack the lungs. The lungs which are said to dominate the exterior, are responsible for spreading defensive qi around the body, this point can therefore be used to attack the wei qi or defensive qi directly.


As always applications are always subjective, and to be used as a basis to stimulate thought.

I have always used this point for grabs and holds when a person has their hand on my body in some way. From a direct push from the front either hand can be used to reach onto this point. The thumb can be quite effective to this point but the tip must be used and not the pad, as the point is quite small. The thumb being the digit relating to earth means that as earth creates metal in the sheng cycle this may not be the best to use. Instead try using the other hand and use the middle finger which pertains to fire, fire controlling metal gives a greater effect and it is easier to dig the finger in with the tip rather than the thumb.

Once the point has been activated the person will tend to move down and contract inward, these being the directions of metal. Depending on which hand has been used to attack the point will depend on what happens next the person can be set up so that the arm straightens giving access to the face for a kick or strike. The point can be used in conjunction with many wrist locks and grabs such as the nikyo lock from aikido or juji gatamae from shorinji kempo.

One last example is during a hand shake, if the thumb is drawn back it can be driven into this point to bring an opponent to the floor. (I realise this is not really a particularly honourable way to subdue an opponent but none the less).

Kind regards,


Ps dont use or practice if pregnancy is suspected this point induces labour

pps this point is good for pain relief ie head aches, rub dont jab.

Edited by Shi Miao Zun (02/02/06 06:15 PM)
In peace prepare for war, in war prepare for peace.