What is Cupping and Why Should I Do It?

At ARIA MediSpa, we are interested in promoting beauty, health, and an overall sense of wellness. These are relatively lofty goals for the average person who engages in the hectic nature of our society. Stressors are impossible to sidestep altogether. Our best bet is to create strategies to manage them. Some turn to yoga, some to meditation or breathing exercises. We offer several services that can help, including massage and cupping. Here, we discuss why the popularity of cupping has continued for years.

What is it and how can it improve health?

Cupping is an ancient treatment developed by Chinese medicine practitioners to address a wide variety of health conditions. Research indicates that cupping, the use of cups for gentle suction against the skin, can help the body naturally manage inflammation. Where inflammation is reduced, energy can flow with more ease.

Several high-profile athletes have sported the various-sized spots created by cupping in recent years. Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps is one of them. Athletes benefit from cupping and the release of muscle tightness and tension it can bring. The practice isn’t just for athletes, though, nor is it only for muscle-release. Ancient practitioners performed cupping for numerous problems, from breathing difficulties to skin conditions to migraines.

In Chinese medicine, stagnation is the root cause of many conditions. Where there is pain in the body, there is the stagnation of energy. Energy is “stuck,” resulting in inflammation and swelling. Cupping can support the body in moving fluid out of the area and restoring better chi.

What is Cupping Like?

Cupping gets its name from the glass or plastic devices used during treatment. These look like globe-like balls, and they come in a variety of sizes. The practitioner places several globes on the skin and creates suction using a pump or other technique. The old-school way to perform cupping involved lighting a flame inside of the cup. When the flame went out, it created suction.

Seeing the bruised appearance of the skin of someone who has recently had cupping done, many people imagine that this treatment must be painful. It is not. The bruising is called a “sha” reaction. It may result from an excess of stagnation in a particular area or, in the case of athletes, an overzealous practitioner. Clients who undergo cupping at ARIA MediSpa can expect to feel gentle suction but no pain. There is no bleeding because only a mild vacuum effect occurs. The service is conservative enough to have done every few weeks.

If you are interested in seeing what cupping can do to help you manage the stressors of daily life, we’re here to answer your questions. Contact our Winchester, VA Medspa at 703-444-2800.

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