I have been remiss! For the last several months I have been doing a series of posts on the various pressure points on the body and somehow I forgot to do Pressure Point GB-20! Therefore today we shall take a deep look at this very popular pressure point. How it works and what are the risks.
GB-20 is located on the back of the head at the posterior aspect of the neck, below the occipital bone, in the depression between the upper portion of the Sternocleidomastoideus muscle and the Trapezius muscle.
A low to medium strike will cause a knockout and a hard strike can result in brain damage. Great local pain is also present with any strike. Concussions are always a risk with head pressure points.
While Pressure Point GB-20 is commonly used for demonstrations of Neurological Knockouts there are dangers associated with it that do need to be addressed. While no where near as dangerous as BL-10 caution still needs to be used on this pressure point.
GB-20 lies on the Greater Occipital Nerve as you can see in the diagram above. This is obviously tied into the functions of the Trapezius Muscle [Left] as well as other functions.
As you can see from the above image the Trapezius and other muscles of the neck and back hold the skull and spine together and allow movement.
Now a light to medium strike to GB-20 with the correct angle and direction of up and across to the other side of the skull towards the face will cause a "mild" brain shock. This will result in some brain dysfunction like dizziness.
A medium strike will cause more brain dysfunction and the attacker will tend to fall forward in a semi unconscious state. And a medium strike also has the risk of concussion.
Also a hard strike aside from brain dysfunction can cause a release of the Trapezius muscle which can result in a dislocation of the spine to skull. This is what makes GB-20 dangerous as permanent spinal cord damage is possible as well as death.
While GB-20 is far from the most dangerous pressure point on the body it can be. Because of its location in the notch at the side/base of the skull it can be rather difficult to hit "well." There is a better option.
Located about 2 cun below GB-20 is the wake up nerve. Striking this nerve bundle "in and down", into the body has a dramatic effect on the functioning of the brain without the risk of damage to the spinal cord.
My recommendation is always to, before striking a pressure point, have as much knowledge as possible about it! Without proper knowledge there can be unintended consequences for the Uki and their health.
Are there any pressure points you would like to see me write about? Comment here.
One of the very best ways to assure knowledge is proper reference materials. Below is a form that you can fill out for a "Sneak Peak" of my book Kyusho Pressure Point Anatomy. This book covers information on all 361 pressure points as well as a host of other very important information. This book is the Gray's Anatomy of Kyusho Jitsu!
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Yours in the arts,
Grand Master Art Mason
Grand Master Art Mason is a professional full time martial artists and Kyusho Jitsu teacher. He is available for seminars and study groups.
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