Cupping is a therapy designed to stimulate the flow of blood and Qi within the superficial muscle layers of the body. Through the use of a vacuum method, glass cups are placed over specific body areas and left in place for several minutes. Cupping increases the circulation of blood and lymph in the body and assists in relieving pain.
Generally, cupping is combined with acupuncture in one treatment, but it can also be used alone. The suction and negative pressure provided by cupping can loosen muscles, encourage blood flow, and sedate the nervous system. Cupping is used to relieve back and neck pains, stiff muscles, anxiety, fatigue, migraines, rheumatism, and even cellulite. For weight loss and cellulite treatments, oil is first applied to the skin, and then the cups are moved up and down the surrounding area.
Cupping is one of the best deep tissue therapies available. It is thought to affect tissues up to four inches deep from the external skin. Toxins can be released, blockages can be cleared, and veins and arteries can be refreshed within these four inches of skin.
Cupping is not just for musculature issues. Cupping therapy is also often used for lung issues, such as asthma or the common cold.
Folk medicines of different countries still use some form of cupping.
Cupping may leave skin discolorations along the treated areas similar to bruising. Do not be alarmed. These discolorations are common after a cupping session and will fade away within a day or so, depending on the degree of discoloration.