Whether you’re an athlete who is suffering from a sports-related injury or you simply want to detoxify your body with alternative and complementary medicine, a cupping massage with a trained health professional may be your answer.
Cupping therapy has been around since ancient egyptians and the positive effects of cupping may be what you need to improve your overall health and well-being without the use of pain relievers and prescription drugs.
What is Cupping Therapy?
An ancient form of alternative medicine that is believed to have originated in China, Cupping Therapy is a centuries-old practice using a suction device as an effective treatment to reduce pain, muscle tension, and remove toxins.
Thanks to Olympic athletes like swimmer Michael Phelps, it’s resurfaced and has become increasingly popular with amateur and professional athletes.
If you've seen circular bruises on the backs of some athletes that look like they were attacked by an octopus, that's actually a sign of effective cupping therapy.
Those circular spots are the remnants of shoulder and back cupping. The practice promotes circulation, as it draws blood into locations that it usually doesn’t reach on its own.
When the skin is suctioned up into the cups that are used in this practice, the connective tissues that lie underneath the surface of the skin and wrap around the muscles are released.
When your muscles tense up and tighten up, the connective tissues that wrap around them start to twist.
Since cupping allows those muscles to be released, they are no longer restricted, can move freely, and thus, you feel less tense and tight.
Cupping promotes a feeling of rejuvenation, strengthens the immune system, and offers a number of other integrative health benefits like improving knee osteoarthritis, bronchial congestion, and even relieving breathing problems in some patients.
How does Cupping Work?
The traditional ancient practice of cupping involves heating up small cups, which can be made of glass, bamboo, ceramic, or other earthen materials.
A flammable material is placed inside the cups, such as herbs, oils, or even paper, the material is ignited, and the interior of the cup heats up.
The fire is extinguished, and then hot cups are placed on strategic spots on the skin. As the cup inside cools, the skin is drawn up and pulled away from the body, which promotes blood flow and allows the underlying muscles to relax.
Another approach to this type of alternative therapy is known as wet cupping, or “blood cupping”. With this process, small punctures are placed on the surface of the skin before the cups are applied.
Also known as Hijama, as the skin is drawn up into the cups, blood is released into them, and it’s believed that this helps to release toxins that are trapped in the blood, the skin, and the tissues.
Wet cupping is not normally recommended by physical therapists as the oriental medicine has potential risks like a skin infection and may not be as safe as the alternative of dry cupping which is offered at Muscle Lab in Los Angeles.
Cupping therapy can be used on any part of the body, though shoulder and back cupping tend to be the most common.
The length of time that the cups are left in place varies and depends on the specific needs and goals of the individual, as well as the recommendations of the therapist.
Once the therapy session is complete, the cups will be removed, and red circular marks will be left behind; however, they usually dissipate and the skin returns to its normal appearance within 7 to 10 days.
If you opt for wet cupping therapy, antibiotic ointment and a small bandage may be applied to prevent infection.
What are the Benefits of Cupping Therapy?
Numerous research studies over many years have examined the effects of cupping in traditional chinese medicine. Below are examples of the findings that some of these studies revealed.
Research has found that pain relief is one of the most notable benefits associated with cupping therapy.
This can include everything from aches and pains that are related to sports injuries, chronic pain conditions, such as fibromyalgia, mild discomfort, or even cancer-related pain.
Because cupping targets the soft tissues and applies pressure to pain points and swelling, the treatment boosts blood flow to these locations, which in turn disperses vital oxygen and nutrients to the tissues.
Therapists can use pressure, heat, and suctioning within close proximity to pain sites, which will allow them to open up the meridians within the body, thus enabling healing energy to travel through the injury.
Eases cold and allergy symptoms
The ancient practice of cupping has been found to stimulate vital organs, including the lungs, which can help to cleanse phlegm and speed up the recovery rate of cold and allergy-related symptoms, such as coughing and nasal congestion.
The treatment of cupping pushes blood and lymphatic fluid throughout the body, which can help to clear congestion and strengthen the function of the immune system.
In ancient times, cupping was most commonly used as a way to treat mild to severe respiratory conditions, including pulmonary tuberculosis, with great success for its time.
Improved blood flow
Cupping draws the blood closer to the surface of the skin, which helps to increase blood flow at the treatment site.
Cupping therapy works to promote healing by using acupuncture and meridian studies to treat highly inflamed areas and create suction to improve the blood flow to muscles for faster healing and recovery.
Of course, improved blood flow also increases circulation. The more oxygen-rich blood flows through your body, the better your health will be and you will feel.
Many clients have issues with shoulder pain or neck pain from the way they sleep due to poor blood circulation. Cupping improves pain and discomfort in as little as one treatment.
Reduced scar tissue
If you’ve had surgery on your back, cupping therapy may be able to help reduce the amount of scar tissue. It softens the scar tissue and makes it more flexible and pliable, which helps to minimize pain and improve mobility.
It’s hard not to feel stressed out these days. Between managing the family, household chores, social engagements, and work, it feels like there’s little time to relax and unwind.
Add in the craziness of this upside-down world that we have been living in since March of 2020, and stress levels are worse than ever for so many people due to the constant uncertainty of Covid-19.
If you feel like the weight of the world is resting on your shoulders and you need to alleviate the pressure, cupping therapy may be the perfect solution to get rid of that negative pressure both physically and mentally.
According to research studies and alternative functional medicine experts, cupping is an excellent way to promote wellness and overall health by using traditional chinese medicine.
The cups lift pressure in tense muscles and offer relief in tiny blood vessels, which can be felt almost immediately.
In fact, many claim that cupping massage is as effective – if not even more so – than deep tissue massage by massage therapists.
Proper circulation is vital for your physical and mental health. When circulation is impacted, toxins can accumulate within the tissues, which can lead to a variety of health issues, including debilitating aches and pains, headaches, anxiety, depression, and increased risk of illness.
Cupping therapy can improve stagnation within the body. Cupping directs blood to the injured areas, which helps to pull various types of accumulated debris from the area, such as toxins and dead cells.
It might feel weird
A lot of first-timers are afraid that cupping will hurt, which is understandable. In reality, however, many people are pleasantly surprised to find that it doesn’t hurt at all; however, it can feel a bit strange.
It feels just like you’d expect a suction cup pulling up on your skin and muscles to feel like. Some people have said that it doesn’t feel weird at all, but rather, have reported that it feels quite soothing and relaxing.
Researching “Cupping Near Me”?
The above are just a few of the benefits that cupping therapy can provide. If you’re searching for “cupping near me”, be sure to get in touch with us today!
We’ll be more than happy to further explain the process and the benefits of cupping so that you can improve your overall health and well-being with this amazing treatment.