what is cupping therapy

What Is Cupping? And What Is Cupping Massage?

So what is cupping? Cupping therapy is one of the most ancient natural therapies we still use today. It was developed more than 3000 years ago and has been used in many parts of the world, starting in Egypt and China.

Many people today are familiar with cupping via exposure to Traditional Chinese Medicine or TCM.

Cupping is commonly used by practitioners of TCM along with acupuncuture. It can also be used on its own, or with other bodywork therapies such as massage.

Cupping was traditionally performed using cups made from bamboo, animal horns, pottery or even bronze. But today most practitioners use either glass, plastic or silicone cups.

The cups are used to create suction on the skin, lifting, seperating and creating ‘space’ in the underlying fascia and tissues. This allows blood and lymph flow to the area, and reduces fascial adhesions.

Cupping therapy is mostly useful for musculoskeletal conditions and doesn’t take long. Cups are generally left on the skin for between 5 and 15 minutes.

How Does Cupping Work?

According to Chinese medical theory the human body is a network of channels, called meridians. In these meridians flow qi and blood that supply energy and nourishment to every tiny part of the body.

When a meridian is blocked or stagnated (for any reason) pain appears in the area and toxins start to accumulate in the blocked area.

The suction created by cupping removes this blockage, reestablishes the flow of energy and blood, and allows it to reach its destination. Cupping also helps to clear accumulated toxins in the treated area.

What is cupping

The Western Interpretation Of How Cupping Works

Blood carries oxygen and nutrients to all the cells in the body. Waste products such as lactic acid and carbon dioxide produced by our cells are cleared also by a good and healthy blood flow.

When tissue is overloaded or injured, adhesions occur in the area. This leads to limited motion, pain and reduced blood flow. The reduced blood flow causes a lack of oxygen and nutrients getting to the cells, while also causing an accumulation of waste products.

Cupping stretches out the fascia, removes adhesions and allows more movement in the tissues. It also helps to pull out the accumulated waste products from the deeper tissue layers.

While cupping is taking place, it significantly improves circulation and increases fresh blood flow to the area being treated. The cells begin to receive a fresh supply of oxygen and nutrients. When the cell metabolism is reestablished, pain is reduced and the tissue can gradually heal.

Cupping often causes temporary bruising which in itself is beneficial as it triggers certain immune
responses that may help the body to deal with flu and respiratory diseases.

What Is Cupping Massage?

Cupping massage is where the one or two cups are placed on the body, suction is created and then the cups are moved over the skin, still with the suction, to lift, warm and loosen up the tissues.

Cupping massage can be used on its own, but it is great for warming the tissue prior to static cupping, and in conjunction with other bodywork.

Click here to find out more about the services I provide or if you have questions about cupping please contact me.

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