YU seminars teaching project
We are excited to announce that Andrew Nugent-Head is returning to the UK, London in 2020 to teach two new watershed courses.
Demand will be high due to interest from the UK, Europe and the USA so please ensure you book now to secure attendance. There are a limited amount of early bird tickets.
Please scroll down to book
Contact Steve at for any enquiries
Seminar 1: Classical Theory in Clinical Practice - understanding Chinese medicine's physiology and pathology in real patients
Friday 17th April through Sunday 19th of April 2020, London
Note: Friday seminar will be 12:30 pm to 19:00 pm to allow overseas participants to arrive.
This watershed event will be one of the most groundbreaking seminars Andrew Nugent-Head has ever taught. After years of teaching the foundations of acupuncture, bodywork, and herbs, one thing has become apparent observing students: the learning of the what and how to treat has been easy to accomplish for those who make the effort—but the why and when of applying it is the missing link between their level of success in the clinic and his.
With this seminar, Andrew Nugent-Head moves beyond teaching techniques and goes into the traditional views of Qi and Blood that were drilled into him by his teachers while watching them treat patient after patient, year after year. Without learning to see how classical theory manifests in real humans, we end up in the hands of 辨證論治: we end up letting pattern names define the treatments we give without a true understanding of the person we are treating.
“Zangfu Theory, Six Division Theory, San Jiao, Wei Qi Ying Xue are fantastic diagnostic tools, but they traditionally assumed an innate understanding of how Qi and Blood move in the body, and how Yin and Yang wax and wane with age or illness. This is what has been lost in the teaching of Chinese medicine today. This is why practitioners graduating from schools in the East or West are pattern fixated instead of person focused. Suddenly, a wiry pulse or a swollen tongue leads to a diagnosis and treatment, which is as far from traditional Chinese medicine as we can get. The tongue, pulse and perceived sensations of hot and cold indicate the state of an individual’s Qi and Blood, they do not indicate illness or health. In understanding the Qi and Blood of a patient we have clear expectations of what illnesses they face, what strategies will or won’t work, and can thus predict treatment outcome with certainty. We must return this innate and traditional understanding of Qi and Blood to modern education or our medicine will continue to be a hollow reflection of the clinical efficacy it once had.”
In this three-day seminar Andrew will explain the physiology and pathology of Yin, Yang, Qi and Blood. Every bit of theoretical knowledge will be laid out in the context of the clinic and reflect the patient-centric view of traditional practice. Participants will also learn to ‘see’ a patient’s Qi and Blood through pulse and tongue training during practice sessions.
While this seminar is open to all, seats are limited and priority will be given to those who have been training with Andrew since 2011. Be sure to register early to ensure your place.
Seminar 2: Diagnosing and treating Autoimmune Diseases
Saturday 21st & Sunday 22nd of November 2020, London
While our medical ancestors treated auto-immune conditions and descriptions go as far back as Zhang Zhongjing, their lack of prevalence in traditional medical literature indicates they were not the epidemic they are today. Viewed as a group, Lupus, Fibromyalgia, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Irritable Bowel Disease, Multiple Sclerosis, Guillain-Barre Syndrome, Addison’s Disease, Sjögren’s, Myasthenia Gravis, Behcet’s, Graves, Hashimoto’s, Crohn’s Disease, psoriasis and 60+ other auto-immune conditions dominate the patient base of most alternative medicine practitioners. It is an area where Western medicine has little to offer its patients and available medications are as dangerous as the diseases they seek to control.
If our clinic could be considered most famous for treating a condition, it would be auto-immune. The bane of many a practitioner who unintentionally mixes western understanding with Chinese treatments, if approached classically, many of these conditions can easily be reversed or put into complete remission. To treat auto-immune diseases confidently we have to see them clearly. They can only manifest when 陰陽適合氣血相搏, meaning Yin and Yang have lost their mutual harmony, and Qi and Blood are attacking each other. To treat auto-immune diseases effectively, we have to know how to apply herbs, acupuncture, bodywork and lifestyle advice to bring Yin and Yang back together and return Qi and Blood to harmony as they move through the body. In chaos there is violence; in order there is health.
Based on the patients we see every day in our clinic, this seminar explains the classical view of the mechanisms behind auto-immune conditions, outlines the treatment strategies we rely on and highlights our successes and failures in doing so. It is designed to give participants the confidence to tackle this difficult patient group and expect tangible results from their treatments. Participants will learn the formulas we write, see the acupuncture and bodywork protocols we use demonstrated, and then practice these techniques as a group. This is an intensive training seminar focused on learning and practical training, with minimal breaks and high expectations of its students. Participants do not need to practice herbs to attend. However, all participants must be active practitioners and arrive prepared to both needle and be needled during practicum sessions.
Is it unreasonable for modern day westerners to expect to understand Chinese Medicine?
Surely the doctors who honed their medical skills over thousands of years to treat any condition were seeing the same bodies we see now, and surely they would want us to understand the valuable lessons they learnt?
At YUJI, we have made it our mission to make the “secrets” of Classical Chinese medicine open to any serious student from any discipline. We explain theory in clear and concise language and lead practice to ingrain the physical skills needed for advanced “qi” techniques, from the very start of your training.
Chinese Medicine is often taught as if it is an exotic subject that you either believe or do not, as if the Chinese Medicine body were something different from the Western medicine body. Whilst some of the concepts are distinct they are really not so far removed from modern western medicine or from accurately described anatomical reality that we are all familiar with. There is only one body, and we are all trying to describe it in ways that make treating its conditions more tangible.
Acupuncture for example tends to get watered down and described as if magical “points” do certain things in the body, without any real examination of whether that is true, or how they might do so. This is not only an inaccurate representation of what the Classical theory states, it ends up distancing anyone with a reasonably enquiring mind from wanting to study further as it suggests that this information is somehow separate from techniques you may already be using and effects that you are already observing.
Another area of the Chinese system, which has been dramatically over-simplified, is internal medicine, where we look to take in to account more deep level health problems. Studying the currently taught version of this can leave you with the distinct impression that you have entered an alternate universe, with no real sense of how you might use this theory to treat the mix of competing influences on a patient’s health. This theory should clearly inform how you might begin to use your observations and assessment of someone’s deeper levels of health to adapt your treatment to maximize its effect without going beyond their ability to recover.
“Lifting the lid……”
YUJI clinic is committed to developing a way of making Chinese Medicine part of the broader conversation of healthcare. At YUJI, we learn from many non-Chinese disciplines and we have made it our mission to teach what we do in a way that includes and pays homage to the many great methods of treating that have added to the field of medicine. We aim to help to create a language of touch, experience and theory that helps people with these phenomenal skill sets to access the breathtaking scope of understanding of one of the major medical systems the world has ever seen and to add something to it.
At YUJI we have adapted and interpreted the language of older “Classical” Chinese Medicine to explain and teach “qi” techniques that are assumed to be master level, but are actually essential basic skills, which should be in place right from the start of your training.
We are keen to find interested people from various bodywork disciplines to help develop the language that begins to include other fields of study. If you have studied Osteopathy, Chiropractic, Physiotherapy, Massage or other bodywork traditions, then you are probably already using Classical Chinese Medicine principles; you just don’t have the exotic sounding names or overview to put the information in to.
We think this is important because many of the above mentioned medical disciplines have extraordinary diagnostic and treatment knowledge. Seen from the viewpoint of a medical system as old, widespread, varied and as developed as Chinese medicine, they seem to lack a coherent overview that succinctly links the effects of diet, exercise, medication, bodywork treatment, mental emotional disorders etc.
Chinese Medicine, on the other hand, has a tremendous framework for putting the observations of modern science and treatment modalities in to, whilst many of the details (compared with the information available today) were either lacking to begin with or have been lost or oversimplified over the centuries.
Our aim to share these ideas and skills is driven by the idea that, whatever our training, we are practicing medicine, and the key motivation for medicine should be to alleviate unnecessary suffering. If we as practitioners cannot help people because we have not bothered to extend our abilities, or have not shared our skills with our colleagues, then we have let our patients down and failed in our duties.
In teaching the skillset of Yin Style Ba Gua, what we are really teaching is quality of touch. However advanced our theory, when we use manual techniques (including acupuncture) to treat, we need to speak the language of the body. We need our touch to be as deliberate and as clear and guided as possible, for this is the language gives the sensations that the body understands and reacts to. To make our touch reliable as a communication tool, we need to train our entire bodies.
In training our entire bodies, we as practitioners, become the tool for treatment AND the tool for diagnosis as we learn to be able to mimic the patterns of dysfunction that we observe in our patients. This is what we mean by embodied medicine, full bodily engagement in the course of a treatment and in life.
8 directions and 6 divisions
The courses at YUJI are teaching the medicine of the 8 directions (“gua”) or the skill of how to assess and direct the movement of “stuff” (qi). But the “stuff” that we are working with is not all the same. For this reason, YUJI courses always structured to reinforce the deeper understanding of the 3 essential fluids. These are the different viscosities of the blood, water and fatty layers, which we might also describe as blood system, nervous system and ingestive system.
This in turn, can lead us in to the use of the 6 divisions, (weather patterns of the body), which begins to throw open the invaluable insights from the Shang Han Lun (“treatise on cold damage”). This broadens the scope of our understanding of human physiology in relation to the environment, and therefore our ability to identify the less obviously tangible aspects of a person’s health that we can reliably affect.
FU – Q’s
Frequently unasked questions…
…..which should be asked all the time
What are you teaching?
We are teaching a skill set of techniques which come from the medical lineage of Yin Style Ba Gua, with theory that links back to the Classical roots of Chinese Medicine.
Lineage, So what?
A strong lineage SHOULD mean that someone has brought together all the best aspects of various systems and unified the theories so that they have a simple but strong set of principles which can be adapted for any situation.
It should mean that your system has avoided many of the wrong turns and blind alleys that individual’s investigation can be open to, whilst giving you a supportive structure and a body of information and fellow practitioners who share the same experiential language to help you improve your skills.
It should NOT mean a long list of rules of how to practice that have to be memorised. That is historical re-enactment, not medicine.
Classical roots. So what?
Texts regarded as “Classics” have survived the intense scrutiny of centuries of study, offering profoundly accurate observations on physiology and treatment. The principles they give rise to begin to alter your ability to process information, allowing you to go beyond the fads of current medical opinion to make sense of otherwise confusing patterns of disorder. This allows you to incorporate many modern techniques and observations into an adaptable system of diagnosing and a broader viewpoint on physiology, disease and health.
If Chinese Medicine information is true to these classical roots, it has been road tested for 1000s of years by 1000s of people
And not just any people.
The Chinese governments, even throughout their turbulent history, had a way of finding the smartest people to teach and examine until they had the smartest of the smartest. Many of those people, of course then went on to work in the field of medicine and contribute to the medical literature.
and not just any 1000s of years.
These years included 1000 years of warfare between huge states with all the life threatening injuries, infectious diseases, malnourishment etc that goes along with it. A medicine born from these horrific times is not a spa medicine, nor could it be considered “alternative”. It was just medicine, life and death medicine.