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Home > Education > Theory > Body Cun Divisions

Table of Body Cun Divisions

From Acupoint Location Guide


Locating acupuncture points requires an understanding of anatomical landmarks. Once these landmarks are located, the space between these landmarks are described in "cun" which is a Chinese word that translates to "anatomical inch". There are always three cun from the eyebrow to the forehead hairline. However, on a large headed person, those "cun" will be longer than on a child. But because acupuncture points are located on the patient according to the patient's unique anatomy, the ruler length between different people will vary widely.

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Head & Neck Cun Division

Body Part Cun Between
Top midline 12 The forehead hairline and the neck hairline.
Top midline 14 The glabella or eyebrow, and the occipital protuberance's inferior border.
Forehead width 9 The two forehead hairline corners.
Forehead height 3 The glabella (eyebrow) and the forehead hairline.
Throat height 3 The clavicle medial end and the mandible angle, or between the hyoid and the manubrium's superior border (when the head is straight).
Neck width 9 The inferior ends of the two mastoid bones.
Neck height 3 The neck hairline and the seventh cervical (C7) spinous process.

Torso Cun Division
Body Part (head & limb) Cun Between
Front width 8 The two nipples.
Chest width 8 The front midline and the armpit (axillary) anterior end (when the arms lie straight alongside the body).
Chest width 8 The front midline and the acromial tip.
Abdomen width 4 The front midline and the rectus abdominis muscle's lateral border.
Upper abdomen height 8 The umbilicus center and the xiphisternal joint.
Lower abdominal height 5 The umbilicus center and the pubic symphysis superior border.
Back width 3 The back midline and the scapular spine's medial end (when the arms lie straight alongside the body).
Lower back width 3 The two PSIS (posterior superior iliac spines).

Arm Cun Division
Body Part Cun Between
Upper arm length 9 The front end midline and the armpit axillary anterior end and the elbow (cubital) fold.
Lower arm length 12 The elbow (cubital fold and the wrist (carpal) crease.
Back shoulder length 3 The acromion and the armpit (axilla) posterior end (when the arms lie straight alongside the body).

Leg Cun Division
Body Part Cun Between
Thigh lateral length 19 The femur greater trochanter superior border and the knee (popliteal) fold and joint.
Thigh lateral length 18 The femur greater trochanter peak and the knee (popliteal) fold and joint.
Thigh medial length 18 The pubic symphysis superior border and the femur medial epicondyle superior border.
Knee length 2 The patella superior and the inferior borders.
Lower leg lateral length 16 The lateral ma tip and the knee (popliteal) fold and joint.
Lower leg medial length 13 The medial malleolus and the tibial medial condyle inferior border.
Foot lateral height 3 The lateral malleolus tip and the sole.
Foot medial height 3 The medial malleolus tip and the sole.

Use of Fingers to Measure Cun
Cun Between
3 The two sides of the 4 fingers (at the level of the proximal interphalangeal joints, when the fingers are held together
2 The index finger's tip and the proximal interphalangeal joint (and fold).
1.5 The two sides of the index and middle fingers when they are held together at the level of the proximal interphalangeal joints.
1 The two sides of the thumb at the proximal interphalangeal joint.
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