What is Cupping? Cupping is an ancient Chinese method of causing local congestion. It has been practiced for thousands of years for the treatment of diseases and pain. By creating suction and negative pressure, cupping is used to drain excess fluids and toxins; stimulate the nervous system; bring blood flow to the stagnant muscles and loosens adhesions, connective tissue and stubborn ‘knots’.
What are the benefits? Cupping is believed to stimulate the flow of blood and lymph to the affected area. Massage cupping is often used on broad areas on the back to break up stagnated waste and stubborn adhesions. Cupping is not only beneficial for muscular pain; it can also be used for the following conditions: general muscular tension, common colds and flu, sporting injuries and menstrual pain. These are just a few conditions that cupping can prove to be extremely beneficial. Consult your therapist for further information.
What to expect during your treatment. The therapist will take a number of glass cups to apply to your body. For each cup used, a vacuum is created using a flame. The cup is then applied to the skin. In order to allow easy movement of the glass, oil is applied. The suction anchors the cup to the body and the area of skin covered is drawn up a few millimeters into the cup. The cups are then left on the body while the area beneath is being treated and the energy is moved. Generally, the cups are left in place for approx 3 to 5 minutes as the skin begins to redden due to the congestion of blood flow.
How does if feel? Cupping is comfortable and relaxing for some, while others may find it uncomfortable or even painful. The sensation is often characterized as deep warmth and tingling long after the treatment has ended. Cupping draws the inflammation out of the problem area yet does not add to it and is excellent when used as a contrast therapy with oils or liniments. The skin will redden with strong cupping, indication that circulation has been brought to the surface. The increased local blood supply to the area will nourish the muscles and skin, and allow the toxins to be carried away.
What to expect after your treatment
The Bruises-After a cupping session, you will notice your skin may come up in red welts or bruises depending on the severity of the injury and can be uncomfortable for some patients. This discoloration of the skin is not caused by broken vessels or tissue trauma, but through the drawing up of waste products to the surface for excretion. Generally marks can last for several days. Please inform your therapist if you are intending to wear clothing where these marks could be visible (ie. swimwear or evening gown).
The Tiredness-Most often, the effects of cupping feel the same as after a strong, deep tissue massage. Occasionally, you may feel a little run-down while the body is cleaning out the waste products. Therefore, it is very important to slow down and drink small amounts of water as often as possible.
The Relief-After your treatment, you will immediately feel the results. You will feel a lot looser and the muscular pain will be relieved quite considerably or eliminated completely. The feeling of sore, aching, muscles will be replaced with a deep feeling of relaxation and well-being.