Cupping is a therapeutic technique used in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) for the relief of muscular tension and pain. It can form part of an acupuncture treatment or be used as a stand alone modality.
Negative pressure is created within specialised glass or plastic cups which are applied to the skin and either left stationary or moved along specific muscles (known as slide cupping). The technique can help to ease upper back, neck and shoulder tension, lower back pain, tight hamstrings/IT bands/hips and more.
Cupping increases the circulation of blood, helping to move old, stagnant blood from the muscle tissue and flushing it with fresh nutrients. This aids the break-up of knots in the muscles (adhesions), as well as having a positive impact on fascia around the cupping area, allowing for better movement.Removing congestion and breaking down knots in the muscles will have a positive effect on the lymphatic system and the removal of toxins.
Cupping causes “vasodilation” so it can help draw out inflammation, which has been stuck deep down in the muscle tissues. Due to increased local blood flow, cupping usually leaves marks on the skin, which can take anywhere from a few days to a week to fade away.