Cupping is perhaps one of the oldest methods of traditional Chinese medicine, historically horn, bamboo or clay cups were used but these days glass and plastic cups are favoured. There are many variations of cupping: static dry cupping, sliding cupping, wet (bleeding) cupping, water cupping and flash cupping. We frequently use cupping in combination with acupuncture or as a standalone treatment.
The idea of cupping is to introduce a vacuum to the cup while it is on the skin. This vacuum is typically introduced by introducing a flame to a glass cup just before it is placed on the skin (known as fire cupping) or by placing a plastic cup attached to a small hand pump.
By lifting the skin and connective tissues away from the underlying structures blood and Qi are able to flow more freely thus alleviating pain, resolving toxins and aiding the body’s repair processes.
Cupping can leave marks and depending on the underlying condition these marks can last from a few hours to some days. Although the marks look like bruising they are not generally painful like a bruise. These days it is not uncommon to see athletes and celebrities sporting the tell tale round marks of static cupping.
Because of the different methods of cupping and because skilled practitioners can control the amount of vacuum or strength of the cups it is a treatment suitable for most clients, from children to the elderly. Subject to your diagnosis cupping can be very beneficial for painful conditions and respiratory conditions such as back pain, sciatic pain, shoulder pain, bronchitis, asthma, congestion, gastrointestinal disorders, menstrual pain and infertility.