Focus on Remedial Massage: Cupping Techniques by Katherine Lynn & Cherice Day

Chinese Cupping Techniques:  by Katherine Lynn & Nathan Leach

What can Chinese Cupping Techniques be used for…

Respiratory Diseases: For chronic bronchitis and asthma

Digestive Diseases: For dysentery, early morning diarrhea, and acute and chronic gastritis

Pain Syndromes

· Shoulder blade

· Loins

· Head

· Soft tissue injury: treating local pressure pain points and area of swelling

Gynecological Disorders

· Infertility and irregular menstruation

· Leukorrhea

· Uterine cramps

Common cold

Insomnia

Cupping is an ancient Chinese practice where the cup is suctioned, applied to the skin, and the pressure in the cup is reduced (by using change in heat or by suctioning out air), so that the skin and outer layers of the muscles are drawn up and into the cup. Sometimes the cup may be moved while the suction of skin is still active, causing pulling of the skin and muscle (gliding cupping).

This treatment has similarities to other massage techniques, such as the rapid skin pinching along the back. In that practice, the skin is pinched, sometimes at specific points (e.g., bladder meridian points), until a redness is generated. Cupping is applied by acupuncturists to certain acupuncture points, as well as to regions of the body that are affected by pain (where the pain is deeper than the tissues to be pulled).

When the cups are moved along the surface of the skin, the treatment is similar to sand scraping, a folk remedy of southeast Asia which is often carried out by scraping the skin with a coin or other object with the intention of breaking up stagnation. Movement of the cups is a gentler technique than sand scraping, as a lubricant allows the cup to slide. Still, a certain amount of bruising is expected both from fixed position cupping (especially at the site of the cup rim) and with movement of the cups (up to 2 weeks of bruising should be expected after cupping massage techniques).

Traditional cupping, with use of heated cups, also has some similarity to moxibustion therapy. Heating of the cups was the method used to obtain suction: the hot air in the cups has a low density and, as the cups cool with the opening sealed by the skin, the pressure within the cups declines, sucking the skin into it. In this case, the cups are hot and have a stimulating effect something like that of burning moxa wool.

Be Sociable, Share!

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Comments are closed.