How Cupping Is a Form of Physical Therapy
As we age, especially after 40 years old, our body begins to break down. This includes loss of muscle, adhesions in fascia, and decreased blood flow. Putting cups over a region helps the body reverse some of these effects.
What is Cupping?
Cupping is an ancient Chinese practice in which a cup is applied to the skin and the pressure in the cup is reduced, by suctioning out the air in the cup, so that the skin and superficial muscle layer is drawn into the cup.
An experiment involving 40 patients suffering from knee arthritis found that people who underwent cupping reported less pain after four months of therapy compared to those who had traditional therapy.
Initially, it pulls blood into an area. The negative pressure in the cup pulls out the stagnant blood in a painful or stiff area and the tissues get saturated with fresh blood.
The new blood is forced into the area and the body begins to develop new blood vessels. This is called neovascularization. This is one if the reasons why cupping causes lasting effects.
The fascia and tissue under the cup can also be stretched several feet. The stretch of the connective tissue and fascia allows for better movement and flexibility. This is why cupping works faster for loosening tight muscles than regular massage.
What types of conditions can cupping help with?
Arthritis, disc herniations, sprains and strains, postural pain, tendinitis, chronic pain.
Patients that have serious cardiac diseases, such as heart failure or certain types of skin diseases like skin cancer shouldn’t participate in cupping as it may be dangerous to them.