Our Practitioners

Each acupuncture practitioner received their foundational training in acupuncture at the Tai Sophia Institute, whose mission entails teaching "transformative and relationship-centered programs and services that integrate the timeless wisdom of nature and ancient healing traditions with contemporary knowledge to develop practitioners and leaders capable of creating and sustaining individual and community wellness."

Several practitioners at Four Gates have taught at Tai Sophia and other wellness programs since the 1980s. Additionally, there are several newer practitioners here who have developed impressive skill sets and are exceptionally capable and caring healers. All of us continue to expand and deepen our knowledge of Chinese medicine, which teaches us to observe and revere Nature. In so doing, our own natures may be understood and tended. In service to the philosophy underlying this medicine, Four Gates practitioners are also committed to teaching and community building. Our classroom is used regularly to cultivate community and offer educational, wellness related programs. We hope you’ll join us for some of these offerings and share news of them with others.



As an acupuncture practitioner, I have spent over 30 years working with clients to provide insight and healing for their health and lifestyle issues.  A graduate of the Traditional Acupuncture Institute (currently the Tai Sophia Institute: considered by many to be the preeminent school of acupuncture in the United States), I have served that school variously as faculty, clinical supervisor, dean of students, dean of faculty and, currently, as a distinguished lecturer. I maintained my clinical practice at Tai Sophia from 1987 until moving back to Columbia in the summer of 2011. 


My undergraduate education was at Pomona College in Claremont, California, where I developed a love of theater, stories and myths as agents of transformation. This passion strongly influenced my desire to pursue work that explored healing and transformation. Fascination with the stories of our lives and those from other times and places has influenced how I practice, teach and continue to study. In addition to continuing acupuncture education over the years, I have studied regularly with mythologist, storyteller and social activist Michael Meade, who has profoundly contributed to how I hold the big picture of people’s lives in the treatment room and the classroom. 


One offshoot of these interests is that I offer regular workshops on dreams and how they may inform our paths, as well as story circles where participants discuss the impact of timeless tales on these times we find ourselves living in today. More information on these workshops can be found on my blog.


I look forward to the privilege of getting to know you, your history and dreams, and the concerns you bring with you. Please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns and to schedule your initial acupuncture experience.




I am a licensed acupuncturist as well as a registered nurse and Medical Qigong practitioner. I have been practicing acupuncture since 1988, after graduating from Tai Sophia (now Maryland University of Integrative Health or MUIH) and have been involved in health care for over 30 years. In addition to my private practice, I have been on the faculty of MUIH since 1990.


Acupuncture is a wonderful, ancient healing method which looks at how energy, or qi, nourishes and balances your body. Hair-thin needles are inserted into specific acu-points in the body, redirecting the flow of your qi and allowing your own vital energy to heal you. This medicine works on all levels of your being: body, mind, and spirit. In this way, it can treat the deepest source of an illness, allowing the body/mind/spirit to become more balanced and whole again. Acupuncture looks at "dis-ease" as a lack of ease and wholeness in the body/mind/spirit. I have found, through the years, that many symptoms respond well to acupuncture including: headaches, sleep disorders, stress-related issues, musculo-skeletal problems, arthritis, fibromyalgia, digestive issues, respiratory problems, ob/gyn, and many other issues.


More recently, I have become a Medical Qigong practitioner. Medical Qigong is one of the four branches of Chinese Medicine. While acupuncture, herbs, and medical massage are better known by the public, Medical Qigong has a long history in China in promoting health and wellness. "Qi" means lifeforce energy, and "gong" means skill, so Medical Qigong is therefore the skillful practice of applying lifeforce energy. Medical Qigong is a complete system that addresses the needs of the whole person, targeting the root of the disease while promoting balance and harmony for the patient.


During a Medical Qigong session, the practitioner uses his or her ability to emit qi to improve the functioning of the patient's energy system. The treatments can enhance the functioning of the immune system, reduce blood pressure, reduce pain, regulate hormones, regulate the internal organs, reduce stress and emotional upset. Following is a patient's description of a treatment:

Heather has been my acupuncturist for a number of years. I was intrigued when she told me about Medical Qigong and feel grateful to have experienced this type of treatment. As the treatment is happening, I am able to feel energy shifting within me. Sometimes there is a feeling of release; other times a sensation that my energy has been enhanced or is flowing more freely. At times, I am able to sense a color along with the movement - and always there is a knowing of deep peace that accompanies these treatments. I am able to breathe with greater ease in the hours and days following treatment. Even just writing this brings me into the space - and spaciousness that comes with a deeper awareness of my work with Heather.


I also bring to my practice my knowledge of health from my background as a nurse. This allows me to see health issues from several perspectives, helping to explain the interface of the two perspectives to my patients, as well as allowing me to determine when an issue needs to be referred to a western physician.


If you have any questions, I would be glad to have a phone consultation with you about your concerns.


LAc (Maryland)
Dipl.Ac (NCCAOM)
RN (Maryland)


‭(301) 717-5742‬


I am passionate about helping people live a spiritually connected, emotionally balanced and physically thriving life. I have helped people with a variety of health issues ranging from chronic pain to anxiety to depression, to infertility to digestive disorders.


My interest in eastern medicine began while serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Sri Lanka in 1994. I remained in South Asia through 2000 and became a serious student of meditation and yoga. After creating a radically new lifestyle based on wellness during this time and seeing amazing benefits, I became inspired to base my career path on helping others create their health and purpose in their life.


I hold my Master in Acupuncture Degree from the Tai Sophia Institute. I had the privilege of being taught by some of the worlds most distinguished acupuncture practitioners during the 3.5 year program. I also hold a Bachelors of Science Degree in Psychology from the University of Oregon.


In addition I hold a 200 hour yoga Teachers Certificate from the Yoga Center of Columbia. I am also very knowledgeable about nutrition and the role it plays in health. I coach my patients on establishing healthy habits that will support them to live well.


I currently accept Blue Cross, Aetna, Cigna and Tri West insurance.



Acupuncture changed my life. I began receiving treatments over 35 years ago. I initially went for help in dealing with stress. Those first treatments inspired me to look at the stressors in my life differently, releasing the hold they had over me. In time I came to understand that while the needles were balancing the energy in my body, clearing blocks and promoting the smooth flow of qi, my mind was gradually coming to an awareness I had not experienced before. There was an opening into the way I approached life. We are all a culmination of our past experiences and what I hadn’t realized before acupuncture was the enormity of possibilities for my future. Acupuncture gives me the gift of ease in my life, the vision to be who I want to be and a clarity that empowers me to create that life for myself.


The many ways I benefited from acupuncture led me to an overwhelming desire to share this medicine with others. With the support of my husband and five children, off to college I went! I graduated with a Doctorate of Acupuncture from the Maryland University of Integrative Health after getting my Master's of Acupuncture from the Tai Sophia Institute. My Undergraduate Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies of Psychology, Sociology and Philosophy was completed at the University of Baltimore. In addition I have acquired certifications in Facial Rejuvenation Acupuncture, Reiki and NADA Specialist -treating those struggling with addiction.


Balance is the key to health. Sickness, injury, poor lifestyle habits and the stresses of everyday life are things we all experience that disrupt the delicate balance that is so important to vitality and well-being. In my practice, Elements of Well-Being, my goal is to work in partnership with you to create and maintain a balance that brings ease to your life.


I am in my tenth year of private practice with offices in Columbia and Annapolis. I am "in network" with Aetna, BCBS, CareFirst, United Healthcare and Cigna.




Welcome to acupuncture! I am Greta Luhar and I look forward to working with you. I have always wanted a career in healthcare because I really am intrigued by how the body works. There really is an art to keeping the body in balance and free from pain and discomfort. When the body or mind hurts, it is a signal for help or rebalancing.


Acupuncture is over 5,000 years old and remains effective in treating everything from headaches, back pain, digestive issues to depression, anxiety, and stress. I am still amazed that these tiny acupuncture needles can be so powerful.


I received my Kinesiology degree from the University of Maryland and then earned my Masters in Acupuncture from Tai Sophia Institute in 2008. I work very closely with my patients to ensure that all their concerns are addressed and my goal is to have my patients feel 125% better than when they started. I really enjoy sitting down with my patients and listening to their stories, where they've been in their lives, and what has brought them to me at this time.


If you are ready to start treatments, I work on Saturday and Sunday mornings and would love to hear all about you and see how we can keep you on a path of health and happiness. This is your journey to a healthy life and I am here to support you.




I have practiced Traditional Acupuncture since the fall of 2001. Health related topics have intrigued me for many years. Initially I discovered the relationship between nutrition and health, and shared this with my fifth graders as an elementary school teacher. Later, I worked in Biofeedback as a Pain Management Therapist. Women's medical concerns are also a major interest, and I counseled clients in reproductive health issues, and worked with expectant parents as a Lamaze Childbirth Instructor.


I find helping others understand and deal with health concerns very satisfying. Often suggestions on diet, exercise and stress relief go a long way to address stubborn symptoms. As an acupuncture client, I found the listening and coaching of my practitioner to be instrumental in improving my health and well being. After a few years in treatment, I decided to study acupuncture myself!


As part of my treatments, I teach Relaxation Skills. Easy to learn breathing exercises and simple meditation have helped many clients deal more effectively with stressful lives.


Being physically active is important to me, and I enjoy hiking, skiing, biking and Zumba, Yoga is great for relaxing! Next to exercising, I love to read, and I find books on history, biography, psychology, and medicine fascinating. Reading my first book on vitamins set me on a path dedicated to better health. In practicing acupuncture, the knowledge and experience I've gained over the years is now used to help my clients heal.




I practice what is called Five Element or Traditional Acupuncture, the oldest form of acupuncture. This method is based on the understanding that we are one with nature. Like in nature, symptoms manifest when there’s an imbalance.


I came to understand the connection between wellness and nature when I was young. I spent most of my time playing outside and observing nature and I recognized at an early age how good it made me feel. Over the years I have continued to enjoy the benefits of nature through hiking, biking and camping.


I have been working in the field of health for over 30 yrs. My background includes both a Masters of Clinical Social Work and a Masters of Acupuncture. Like many in this field, the experience of being a patient opened in me a bigger conversation about the meaning of health and wellness and ultimately how to achieve it.


My experience as a social worker has strongly influenced my acupuncture practice and approach to treatment. Coupled with life experience, I am particularly skilled at assisting people with anxiety, depression, sadness, stress reduction, women’s issues, PMS and menopause, and various pain related conditions including back, knee, shoulder and foot.


I am a member of the Maryland Society of Acupuncture and am certified in acu-detox. I use cupping, essential oils, magnets and Gua Sha in my practice. I sell various products on my website for patients, including CBD Clinic for pain. It has been a natural transition to begin oil painting to connect my love of nature with my understanding of its many changes, whether healthy and vibrant or compromised.




I am a licensed acupuncturist and registered nurse. I have been working in the health care field for twenty-five years.


I had studied acupuncture and Chinese Medicine and received my Masters Degree of Acupuncture (M.Ac.) from the Tai Sophia Institute in Laurel, Maryland in 2011.


My medical background also includes Bachelor's degree in Nursing (R.N.) from the Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing, and over 17 years of experience working as a Registered Nurse at the adult medical unit at The Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland.


This puts me in the unique position to understand health and wellness from two different perspectives. Some problems are better treated by modern medicine but many can benefit from the more gentle approach of traditional Chinese medicine.


My goal is to help people with the problems that arise from the stresses of life. These problems include almost any disease or pain. While I don't purport to be able to heal everything, I do know that acupuncture and Chinese medicine can help the body start its own healing.




I am a licensed professional clinical counselor (LCPC) specialized in trauma, mental illness, resilience, sex addiction, and sex therapy for individuals, couples, and families. I have practiced counseling for about 17 years and teach at Liberty University as an adjunct. It is funny why the counselor is at the acupuncture center. I hear you. Here is why.


I have always been interested in religion, spirituality, culture, and their interaction with the human mind, spirit, and body. My grandfather was an esteemed Korean Traditional Medicine doctor, and I was always fascinated by his presence and his dedication to helping the community when I was growing up. Thus, you might say that the spirit of traditional healing was in my blood. After getting my doctorate in 2018, I seriously considered studying Chinese or Korean Traditional Medicine, specializing in mental illness and sexual dysfunction. So, my journey began in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.


I finished my first year of Master of Science in Acupuncture at Virginia University of Integrative Medicine (VUIM) in September 2021. It is challenging, but I love to learn Chinese or Korean Traditional Medicine. I do not know how long it will take. Still, I aim to develop spiritually inclusive and culturally sound mind-body-spirit healing practices by integrating Western social science and Eastern Traditional medicine.