It is special and unique branch of Ayurveda which deals with study of vital points and delicates structures of the body.This branch of Marma shareera is also called as ‘Applied Anatomy’ or Surgical Anatomy’, as it gives the knowledge to the surgeons to put their instruments on the body parts wherein these marmas are absent or to conduct the surgery without disturbing them.
The word Marma comes from Sanskrit word ‘Mru’ means ‘To kill’.All Acharyas like Charaka,Sushrut and Vagbhatt explained the marmas and their impact n body but First and foremost literature of marma sharira was explained in Sixth Adhyaya of Sushruta Samhita Sharirasthana named as ‘Pratheka marma nirdesh sharir.’

Marma has importance regarding the traumatic effect.This points should be protected from injury because injury to this points responsible for instant or gradual death of person, deformity in body organ or severe pain in that affected parts. This points are the seat of Prana means life.
Acharya Sushruta has explained 107 types of marma in our body.

 

Defination of Marma-

तेषां अन्यतमं पीडायां समाधिका पीडा भवती चेतना निबन्ध वैशेष्यात् /च सी ६/३

According to Charaka,marma are thosev site in the body where the pain sensation is felt more intensively comparatively the other parts of body .This part is associated eith chetana or life elements hence pain felt in that region is more intensed.

जीव स्थानं तु मर्म स्यात् /(राज निघन्टू )
मर्माणी जीव आधाराणी प्रायेण मुनयो: जगु :/ शारंधर ५/३८

According to Raja nighantu and Sharangadhara-Marma is the seat of Jeeva or life where life element exists.Hence any injury to marma would harm the life.

विषमं स्यन्दनं यत्र पीड्यते रुक् च मर्म तत्/
यत्र देहे देशे पीड्यते रुक् च विषमा भवति तत् च मर्म /
मरण सदृश दु:ख दायित्वात् वा इति मर्म शब्दस्य निर्वचनम्/ अ हृ शा ४ /३७

According to Vagbhatta,marma is the place or point wherein an injury leads to vishama syandana(irregular pulsation),peeda (misery-physical or mental) and ruk (pain) or death.

मरण कारीत्वात मर्म (अरुण्दत्त,अ हृ शा ४ )
According to Arundatta ,that which causes the marana or death is called as marma

 

मारयन्ति इति मर्माणी (डल्हण )
The part of body on injury leads to death is called as marma

मर्माणी मांस सिरास्नाय्वस्थिसन्धीसन्निपाता: तेषु स्वभावात्
एव विशेषेण प्राणास्तिष्ठन्ति तस्मान्मर्मस्वाभिहतास्तं!स्तान् भावनापद्मन्ते //सु शा ६
According to Sushruta marma is the meeting point of five elements of the body i.e mamsa(muscles),sira (blood vessels),snayu (ligaments,tendons and nerves),asthi(bones)and sandhi(joints).Prana means life is seated here therewfore any injury to these points leads to serious consequences.

Classification of Marma-

Depending on the predominance of present elements marma is divided in to 5 types-

1.Mamsa Marma-11 in number
2.Sira Marma-41 in number
3.Snayu Marma-27 in number
4.Asthi Marma-08 in number
5.Sandhi Marma-20 in number

Another classification of marma is based on their location-
Shakhagata Marma-(located in both extrimities)-44 in number
Koshtagata or Madya shareergata marma-(marma located in trunk i.e thorax and abdomen)-26 in number
Shirogata Marma(located in head and neck)-37 in number

According to effect of injuru on marma-

Sadyo Pranahara Marma (injury to this is responsible for instant death)-19 in number
Kalantara Pranahara Marma (injury to this leads to gradual death)-33 in number
Vishalyaghnakara Marma(injury to this leads to deformity)-44 in number
Rujakar Marma(leads to severe pain when injured)-8 in number