CUPPING & Tui Na Massage
Cupping and TuiNa are forms of Chinese medical manual therapy. Treatment will include hands-on manipulation on the area of concern utilizing classical techniques, followed by cupping therapy. This can help to ease your pain, stiff joints, tense shoulders, improve circulation. Cupping is used for a variety of ailments including back pain, muscle tension, and asthmatic conditions.
During your Initial or follow-up visit you may need cupping or gua sha, the Acupuncturist places round cups directly on your skin. The cup is either first heated with fire or manually pumped to create a suction. The cups are then left on your skin for several minutes. While the cups are placed in a specific area of your body, Tui Na massage is done.
What Is Chinese Cupping? What Does it Do for You?
Cupping is the term applied to a technique that uses small glass cups as suction devices that are placed on the ski to disperse and break up stagnation and congestion.
There are several ways that a practitioner can create the suction in the cups. One method involves swabbing rubbing alcohol onto the bottom of the cup, then lighting it and putting the cup immediately against the skin.
Once the suction has occurred, the cups can be gently moved across the skin (often referred to as “gliding cupping). Medical massage oils are sometimes applied to improve movement of the glass cups along the skin. The suction in the cups causes the skin and superficial muscle layer to be lightly drawn into the cup. Cupping is much like the inverse of massage – rather than applying pressure to muscles, it uses gentle pressure to pull them upward. For most patients, this is a particularly relaxing and relieving sensation. Once suctioned, the cups are generally left in place for about ten minutes while the patient relaxes. This is similar to the practice of Tui Na, a traditional Chinese medicine massage technique that targets acupuncture points as well as painful body parts, and is well known to provide relief through pressure.
The side effects of cupping are fairly mild. Bruising should be expected, but the skin should return to looking normal within 10 days.
The Philosophy Behind Pain and Cupping.
“Where there’s stagnation, there will be pain. Remove the stagnation, and you remove the pain.”
The old Chinese medical maxim holds that pain results from the congestion, stagnation, and blockage of Qi, or vital energy, vital fluids, lymph, phlegm, and blood. If pain is the essence of disease, then suffering is a result of obstructed or irregular flow in the body. Chinese cupping is therefore a method of breaking up the blockage to restore the body’s natural flow of energy.