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About Maria Mercati's Acupuncture Syllabus

Gateway to Excellence and Quality

“For me, Acupuncture is so exciting as there are many, many ways to use it to produce a desired effect. Skill, knowledge, experience and kindness are the essential tools to effectively and almost intuitively use this most powerful of medicine.
The outcomes can be so remarkable that it can almost seem like magic. At other times it is necessary to draw on my years of experience and be more patient as the desired results unfold more slowly.
(see patient experience below) My goal is to give every patient and acupuncture student the benefit of these experiences.”

Study Acupuncture to Get the Right Balance

My acupuncture course produces the complete and competent professional acupuncturist but that is not all. We produce acupuncturists with passion for their work. There are several courses to choose from. I do not believe in acupuncture being a three year degree course, nor do I approve of courses that are as short as 12 days as these cannot provide a sound and coherent basis for the practice of acupuncture which is complex and involves a full understanding of the underlying science.

Spinal acupuncture done safelyTo study acupuncture to high standards is an absolute necessity as Acupuncture is a serious therapy where inept needling can cause serious damage such as pneumothorax, penetrate organs and the spinal cord !!!

"Would you be happy as a patient to go to an acupuncturist who uses invasive needling, but whose qualification is the result of completing a 12 day or even much shorter course that has been deliberately shortened in order to keep the price low?"

I am intensely passionate about acupuncture. My acupuncture course which is intensive and rigorous from the start is 50/50 academic and practical. The main emphasis is on TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) acupuncture throughout. The acupuncture training course covers all essential Chinese medical theory together with all the needling and other practical skills that a professional acupuncturist would require.

Acupuncture Syllabus
On my acupuncture course you will be taught and extensively practice the following:

Fundamental structures of TCM covering Jing, Shen, Qi, Blood, Body Fluids, Yin/Yang relationships, the Eight Principles and the TCM causes of disease –the emotions, pathogenic factors, diet and lifestyle.

Pericardium or Triple Burner MeridianMeridians & acupoints
To learn the interrelationships between the 12 meridians and the 8 extraordinary meridians and the use of specific acupoints to capitalize on these relationships. To accurately locate 140 acu-points and learn their special functions.
You learn the location and qualities of the Yuan source, Luo connecting, the Five Shu, the Qi-Cleft, the Influential and Back Shu and Front Mu points.
You will learn to use all these acupuncture points in a diagnostic and treatment context.

Pulse diagnosis


Tongue Diagnosis

Every practitioner versed in Traditional Chinese Medicine ( TCM) theory will tell you a lot can be read about a patient from their tongue.

Simple clues. A normal tongue should be pale red with a thin translucent coating with no swelling or cracks.
A pale tongue indicates a deficiency condition - maybe tiredness
A pale & swollen tongue indictes deficiency with dampness - maybe IBS
A red tongue with a red tip can indicate emotional and/or sleep problems
A deviated tongue indicates internal wind which could lead to a stroke.
A purple tongue indicates stagnation which could lead to a heart attack
Red edges around the tongue indicate lots of stress.

Chinese Organ syndrome differentiation
You will learn the causes, symptoms and inter-relationships of TCM Organ syndromes and the most effective possible acupoint combinations for needling. You will be introduced to Five Element acupuncture theory.

The principles of TCM diagnosis and development of diagnostic skills based on listening, asking about the presenting symptoms and medical history, observation of the tongue and relevant body features, palpation of the pulse and Meridians. You will develop these skills through guided case studies in and out of the classroom and relate your findings to the Organ syndromes.

Acupuncture case studies

Applied acupuncture treatment design to establish priorities in choosing Maria’s most effective needling prescriptions based on an understanding of the causes of Chinese (TCM ) syndromes or patterns of disharmony. This covers conditions affecting the digestive, respiratory, dermatological, reproductive, circulatory and neurological systems.  Emphasis is given to acupuncture that focuses on emotional problems.  

Orthopaedic Musculo-Skeletal acupuncture
My course teaches you the treatment all acute injuries caused by sports or trauma and all chronic arthritic conditions and their underlying causes.   You will learn the pathology of Bi syndromes covering TCM Stagnation, Damp, Cold, Wind and Heat.  

Locating Acupoints for Frozen Shoulder

Spinal acupuncture using Huatuojiaji and Back Shu acupoints is used for both musculo-skeletal and all chronic internal and acute external conditions. Throughout the course great emphasis is placed on safe, effective needling particularly in relation to spinal acupuncture. 

Spinal Acupuncture

Specialist Acupuncture Needling techniques
You will learn reduction and tonification techniques for the safe, effective treatment of Excess and Deficiency conditions and the achievement of Deqi.

Dates and fees for next acupuncture course
or Book your acupuncture course place here

"Acupuncture does not take effect until the arrival of Qi. This is called Deqi. Inserting the needle into the skin should cause little or no pain. Deqi can be an uncomfortable sensation once the needle is inserted. When the needle is manipulated  the sensation should be as strong as the patient can bear. This is different for each patient." Maria Mercati ©

Auricular Microsystems acupuncture covering the five detox points as seen in the picture and also stress relief, weight loss and musculo-skeletal pain relief.

Wrist and Ankle Microsystems Acupuncture primarily used for pain control. It is a system that can be used on a daily basis in a clinic that specialises in musculo-skeletal conditions.

Cosmetic acupuncture for toning the face, reducing lines and wrinkles. Our cosmetic acupuncture will be learnt under the strictest supervision to ensure total safety. We will show you both the the Western style cosmetic acupuncture as well as the Chinese style.

Cupping as a stand alone therapy and in conjunction with acupuncture

Cupping and heatlamp therapy for back pain

Moxibustion for use in both musculo-skeletal and internal conditions.

   Elbow Acupuncture Moxa

The Principles of Health, Safety and Legality. This covers needle hygiene, safety in the clinic, client records, professional ethics, insurance  and local council requirements.

Some acupuncture courses cover only one or two of the forms of acupuncture listed above. When you enrol on Module 3, you will be taught everything that is listed above to a standard comparable to the very best available in Europe.
Our acupuncture course represents amazing value as it gives you so much.

Dates and fees for next acupuncture course
or Book your acupuncture course place here

The syllabus and style of my Acupuncture course is completely unique and entirely based on my vast experience of both treating thousands of patients and teaching this constantly evolving course for the last 22 years. My courses nurture highly successful acupuncturists who are able to achieve outstanding results.

For me, acupuncture is a skill and passion and since 1992, I have studied in many TCM acupuncture hospitals in different parts of China and have worked closely for seven years with a TCM doctor in the UK. I also have frequent acupuncture myself.

Maria's Qualifications:

  • BA (Hons) 1994
  • Diploma Shiatsu (Bristol School of Shiatsu - 3 year course) 1994
  • Certs. Tui Na (Shanghai College of Traditional Chinese Medicine -TCM - 4 weeks) 1992
  • Certs. Tui Na (Shanghai College of TCM 2 weeks) January 1993
  • Cert. Acupuncture (Xiangshan Hospital of TCM Shanghai - 7 weeks) May 1993
  • Cert. Acupuncture (Weihai Hospital of TCM - 3 weeks) 1996
  • Cert. Acupuncture (Xian College of TCM - 6 weeks) 1997
  • Cert. Master Tung's - Robert Chu 2010. Cert. Dr Tan's Balance Method 2014
  • Certs. Advanced Acupuncture (Shangdong College of TCM) 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2013
  • Cert. Foundation in Counselling (Gloucestershire College - 1 year) 1989
  • ITEC Holistic Massage with A&P - 1991
  • Massage Training Institute (MTI) 1992
  • ITEC Tutor Recognition & Registration (1994)
  • Cert. Adult Education Teacher (Gloucestershire College - 1 year) 2002

Acupuncture can change people's lives, physically and emotionally - read on.....

Distanza Orr - patient experience

My first experience with acupuncture is one that I will never forget, I could kind of describe it as the first breath you take after holding your breath under water for as long as you can, but that would only touch the sides.....

Maria had asked everybody attending the tui na course to try acupuncture, I was very nervous and was pretty sure at first that I wouldn't try it. I stayed by on the thursday to watch her do acupuncture on two of the other students and she asked me if I wanted to try it I said that I hated needles and that the idea made me very nervous. She said not to worry and after a little more coaxing I said ok.

I laid on the couch and closed my eyes, i had sweaty palms and was very anxious you can imagine, anyhow she said she was going to use very fine needles, i said ok and she said she'd do something gentle.

When the last pin went into on the left foot the most amazing sensation happened to me the sensation i felt was what i imagined to see/feel at the moment i took my last breath and died, i will elaborate on that... basically it was like every scene  in my whole life flashed before my eyes in a split second a millionth of a split second but i saw every one and the rush i felt was better than any drug or orgasm i have ever experienced ever it was like a divine intervention, breath taking, with this instant emotion i burst into spontaneous tears but not of sadness just through sheer joy enlightenment that i had experienced in this Millie second.

And with the crying my heart started beating like crazy my breathing became a little erratic but Maria came along and massaged some points to calm me down. I got my self relatively calm and before I knew it she was tweaking my needles I didn't have the flash but the wave of emotion started me crying again. Those 40 minutes were the most memorable moments in my entire life the moment was a life time and I knew at the very second I felt what I did that I wanted to learn this and practice it for the rest of my life. Thank you Maria and family for my own personal release from life.

I had more acupuncture the following week - the next day i didn't even feel like i existed, by this i mean i felt so calm and felt that i was floating like  had no gravitation all day, to the point where i went to the pool and just stuck floats under my arms and legs so i could rally feel like i was weightless it was phenomenal xx

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