Cupping is a centuries old therapy where glass, silicon or plastic globes are place on the skin with negative pressure creating suction.
The intent of cupping is to release tension, increase circulation and stimulate the body’s own healing mechanisms. It is commonly used to treat pain, restriction and boost the immune system.
Where manual massage uses downward pressure, the suction of cupping assists tissue layers to release. This pulling action causes a rapid increase in blood flow which brings impurities from deeper layers to the surface. Pink, red, or purple coloured circular marks may appear on the skin from the movement of impurities. The stronger the suction, the more pronounced the marks may be. They tend not to be painful and may take from 3 days to 2 weeks to disappear.
Cupping can be used with the cups left in one place on the body or with a massage action.
As the lymphatic system is responsible for filtering out bacteria, preventing infection from entering the bloodstream, collects and removes waste (dead blood cells, and toxic materials) the action of cupping can be an effective tool for supporting immune system.
The pulling action of cupping massage functions like a deep manual massage by placing a stretch and subsequent elongation of the muscle. Adhesions may be broken down in this fashion.
Static cupping is effective in releasing trigger points, the hyper-irritated locations in muscles which refer pain distant from the area by increasing the local circulation and separating the layers of tissue restricted over the point. Leaving the cups on the body for moments to several minutes helps move products of inflammation.