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Hai Tong Pi is a very effective soak for treating chronic obstruction (Bi) in the lower back and limbs. It can be used as a compress or a soak/fumigation for sports injuries or in the second or third stage of a traumatic injury.

Hai Tong Pi dispels wind-damp affecting the limbs and muscles treats lumbar and leg pain, and wind-damp pain affecting the muscles and limbs. Hai Tong Pi frees network and channel vessels and relieves pain. Combined with Tou Gu Cao it relaxes spasms and contractions in the sinews.

As a whole, the Hai Tong Pi Soak can be used for chronic pain deriving from injury to the bone, sinews or muscles. It is particularly useful if there is wind-cold and wind-damp (ie: pain increases in damp or cold weather and with exposure to cold).

Hai Tong Pi Soak

4 qian            HAI TONG PI

4                     TOU GU CAO

4                     MO YAO

4                     RU XIANG

3                     DAN GUI

3                     HUA JIAO

2                     CHUAN XIONG

2                     HONG HUA

2                     WEI LING XIAN

2                     BAI ZHI

2                     FANG FENG

2                     GAN CAO

This formula is not suitable for a first-stage injury where there is acute swelling, heat and redness.


1) Put the herbs in a pot with 2-3 gallons of water. Let the herbs soak in the water for 20-30 minutes

2) Turn on the burner and bring the water to a rolling boil. Once boiling, turn the flame down to a simmer and cover the pot loosely so that steam can escape.

3) Simmer the herbs for 30-40 minutes

At this point you can add a bottle of clear alcohol such as rice wine or vodka if you want to increase the warming and channel coursing effect of the soak

4) While the mixture is hot steam the affected are in the steam coming out of the pot. This aids the penetration of the formula in the network vessels and the interstices between the skin and flesh (couli).

5) Then, when the liquid is warm, but not scalding, possible soak the affected area in the liquid for 10-15 minutes.

In treating the shoulder, knee, lumbar area etc, where it is not possible to soak or steam the area directly, soak towels or cloths in the mixture and apply them to the injured area as a compress. Make sure that the cloth or towel will not scald you before applying. As one towel cools replace it with another, rotating them as necessary.

6) One soak lasts 6-7 days. Store the mixture by covering the pot and putting it in the refrigerator. After the first day there is no need to bring the mixture to a boil or to simmer it for 30-40 minutes. Simply bring the mixture up to an appropriate temperature and steam and then soak the injured area or apply compresses.