One-sided headaches Gallbladder meridian on head

Gallbladder Meridian

The Gallbladder meridian has many points for relieving pain.

“The Gallbladder is like a judge for its power of discernment.”
– Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Medicine

The Gallbladder meridian begins at GB 1 (Gallbladder 1), located at the outer corner of the eye. The Gallbladder meridian is famous for the way it zigzags along the side of the head and torso.  The GB meridian passes over the side of the entire leg, and ends at GB 44 – located on the 4th toe.

Internally, the Gallbladder meridian connects with the liver and gallbladder organs.

The Gallbladder meridian is a very long meridian covering the side of the body. For this reason, the Gallbladder meridian is used to alleviate one sided complaints, such as a one sided headache or sciatica.

Gallbladder Meridian

Gallbladder Meridian

The zigzag pathway of the Gallbladder meridian reflects the Gallbladder’s job of decision making or discernment. “Should I go left or right? Should I follow this path or that path?” Because of this, the Gallbladder is sometimes known as the source of decision making (or indecision!).

I use the Gallbladder to relieve one sided headaches, hip pain (sciatica), and over thinking.

Famous Gallbladder Point

GB 21* Jian Jing, “Shoulder Well”

Locate GB 21 – as you can see in the image below, GB 21 is on top of the big shoulder muscles (trapezius). You have probably massaged this point many times, as it is often sore and tight.

I use GB 21 to relieve headaches, neck pain and stiffness, and to support overall relaxation. GB 21 is a very powerful point to send the Qi downward, toward the feet – perfect for calming an over active mind stuck in decision making!

*Never use this point on pregnant women.

GB 21 Jian Jing "Shoulder Well"

GB 21 Jian Jing “Shoulder Well”

Get the Qi Flowing in the Gallbladder Meridian

Keeping the Qi moving in the Gallbladder Meridian helps to relieve and prevent many aches pains – click here for a blog post all about moving Qi in the Gallbladder Meridian.

To continue learning, check out the “All About the Gallbladder Meridian” video on demand.

About The Author

Cindy Black, L.Ac., LMT

Cindy Black is the Founder of Big Tree School of Natural Healing and the author of Meridian Massage, Pathways to Vitality. She is appreciated for her ability to make the complex accessible, fun, and practical.


  • Rachel McClean

    Reply Reply January 11, 2014

    I love the GB meridian! I have had fantastic results relieving headaches for my clients during Meridian Massage sessions.

    • Cindy Black, L.Ac.

      Reply Reply January 11, 2014

      Woo Hoo!

  • Kristie Smith

    Reply Reply January 30, 2014

    Love your site. Could you please add a “Share” button to your posts so that I can post them on Facebook? Thanks. Can’t wait to listen to your Feb 11 webinar.

    • Cindy Black, L.Ac.

      Reply Reply January 30, 2014

      Hi Kristie,

      Thanks for the tip! I’ll get right on it 🙂

  • Elsie

    Reply Reply December 24, 2015

    Do I massage the shoulder points to get rid of neck pain just above the GB21 point.

    • Cindy Black, L.Ac., LMT

      Reply Reply December 24, 2015


      GB 21 is a great point for relieving neck pain. Experiment and explore massaging the affected area and add in extra attention to GB 21 (do not massage GB 21 during pregnancy).

  • Gayathri

    Reply Reply January 19, 2017

    Thank you Cindy,I really appreciate the esoteric side of TCM and how your explanations while simple really help us invoke the power of attention and awareness to the complex organism that is the human body.
    The nugget here for me was how the zigzag pattern of seemingly apparent indecisiveness forces one to exercise the right decision at the right time. External reality mirroring internal reality. We must exercise Discernment indeed. how awesome is that! Thanks for the quote from the Yellow Emperor’s classic text. This is very important as it prevents misinterpreted translations as well as with most traditional systems of medicine and it’s embedded wisdom. With gratitude!
    Gayathri recently posted…Epigenetics to Better Health & the Soul’s JourneyMy Profile

  • Freda

    Reply Reply May 10, 2017

    Thanks for all the good and informative information you share of FB. 🙂

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