Tara is a Certified Cupping Therapist by the International Cupping Therapy Association and has 42 hrs of cupping Continuing Education.
Cupping, (also known as Negative Pressure Massage when cups are moved across the body and skin) is a traditional time-honored treatment remaining favored by millions of people worldwide because it's safe, comfortable and remarkably effective for many health disorders, It's the use of suction, rather than compression for bodywork ranging from myofascial release to lymphatic drainage- and everything in between! Cupping rapidly facilitates rigid soft tissue release, loosens and lifts connective tissues, breaks up and drains stagnation while increasing blood and lymph flow to skin and muscles in ways not possible with compression.
When the cups move, Negative Pressure Massage really feels great. The pulling action engages the parasympathetic nervous system, thus allowing a deep relaxation to move through the entire body. It is not unusual to fall asleep when receiving this treatment. People are often surprised at how relaxed, warm and light they feel - hours...sometimes even days afterwards.
Used on the back, the larger cups will mimic the rolling action of myofascial release without discomfort to the client. The variety of movements can be long and draining, circular and vibrational for stimulation and for areas of stubborn knots and rigid tissue. The skin will redden with strong pressure, indicating that the circulation has been brought to the surface. Application of liniments, analgesics, tinctures, hydrosols and essential oils immediately post treatment will facilitate absorption of the product deeper into the tissue. The increased blood supply to the local muscles and skin will bring nourishment and stimulate the circulatory and lymphatic systems to carry away stagnation and toxins. Another benefit of negative pressure is that it really feels great, and is not an irritant to the skin or body. It draws the inflammation out, yet does not add to it. The pulling action engages the parasympathetic nervous system, thus allowing a deep relaxation to move through the entire body.
How does it work?
A vacuum is created inside of the cups using either heat or suction. Tissue is lifted into the cup from negative pressure and can allow up to 4 inches of tissue to be lifted. The vacuum formed by Cupping draws up the old non-circulating stagnant blood and sticky fluids from the area, bringing them up to the surface and away form the injury so that healthy free circulation can be restored to the affected area, thus make space for oxygen, living cells and nutrients for faster recovery.
Blood. Cupping provides the tissue with a surge of blood flow decreasing stagnation and allowing the tissue to normalize. When blood flow increases it helps to increase nutrients and dispose of toxins effectively decreasing ischemia.
Body Fluids. Cupping is quite effective in moving lymph, intestinal content and lung fluid build up. It is an excellent way to aid respiratory illness.
Fascia. Fascia is connective tissue that has contact with every part of the body and helps to cleanse and wash the blood almost serving as s a screen for waste and toxins. It is now recognized that connective tissues carry out regenerative functions for certain organs. If fascia is unhealthy restrictions occur such as adhesions or loss of range of motion that certainly lead to pain and often disease. Normalizing the fascia with cupping hydrates the tissue, creates more elasticity and improves overall function in the muscle and connective tissue.
Indications for Cupping
Cupping is indicated when helping to drain lymph, loosen adhesions, release deep tissue, move stagnation, relieve inflammation, stimulate blood flow, warms tissue, and sedates the nervous system. More indications for cupping:
A word about those "Marks"
The Most common and unfortunate misconception concerning Cupping is the misinterpretation of the marks sometimes resulting from the treatment. These Discolorations are not Bruises. What these marks under the skin are, post Cupping, is stagnation, dead cellular debris, pathogenic factors, excess fluid and most importantly - Toxins being drawn out of the bio-system. This toxic garbage is drawn to the surface and sometimes leave deposits under the skin, which, short of cutting the skin and pulling it out, is the best place for the lymphatic system to drain it away. Some capillary seepage occurs, but it is minimal to the acidic agents being removed.
The Western term for discoloration is Petechia. Petechia is a slight subcutaneous discharge of blood from the vessels. The negative pressure from the suction tools cause extravasation of blood from the peripheral capillaries which result in subcutaneous blemishing (ecchymosis). Petechia does not represent capillary rupture as evidenced with Bruising. Petechia fades almost immediately to ecchymosis, and there is a rapid resolution of the marks as compared to bruising.
Petechia from cupping
Capillary rupture in bruising
The discolorations fade from hours up to two weeks, depending on the amount of stagnation. The length of time it takes for it to fade indicates the severity and toxicity of the patient's condition, as well as the patients follow-up activities. As treatments accumulate marks will occur less and less. This is a direct result of stagnation, debris and toxins being expelled from the body.
Cupping Therapies offered:
A stronger suction (negative pressure) is great for deep tissue work and fascia release. Using a deep (high suction) moving cup offers a deep tissue massage without the soreness afterward. Additionally it gives all of the irritants and inflammatory products that have been released into the tissue a place to go -up into the superficial layers. This makes it easier for your body to evacuate stagnate toxic garbage into the lymphatic system.
Women in Asia, Russia and Europe have been utilizing these remarkable negative pressure facial exercises for rejuvenation and maintenance for generations. Protocols for the face use the small cups to very lightly vacuum and lift the facial tissue, mimicking the pumping movements of lymphatic drainage.
The benefits include increased local circulation of the skin, increased nutrients brought to the epidermis, and enhanced absorption of facial topicals. The drainage of stagnant fluids from reservoir areas will reduce edema and chronic puffiness. The muscles of the face benefit greatly from the reduction of tension and tightness, releasing expression lines and loosening rigid muscles associated with TMJ disorders. Sinus infections and inflammation are also directly relieved by the loosening and draining effects of the cups - many times resolving issues that many sufferers commonly turned to more radical procedures to correct.
Cupping stretches open, rather than closing the lymphatic vessels. This action actually increases the movement of lymph locally and systemically with cumulative treatments. Increasing Lymphatic output increases the immune systems ability to detoxify the body and respond to stressors put onto it from disease, chemicals, stress and electromagnetic fields.
Cupping is an excellent therapy for the belly. It stretches the walls of the organs, thus sloughing off stagnant waste and mucus and overall promote the activity of digestion. People consistently report expelling an excess amount of waste immediately following treatments and an increase of elimination throughout the day. Cupping is regularly, and with great success, being used to help in conception, handle IBS, constipation, diarrhea, distention and acidity.
Nothing pulls from the body free radical, poisonous molecular debris better than suction. Blood tests have been done to measure the levels of toxins, pesticides and acids being drawn out of the body with shocking results.
The use of suction is commonplace throughout the history of the Olympic Games for maintenance, pre and post event injuries, detoxification and recovery. Besides Cupping for injuries and recovery, Olympic Trainers use suction to draw toxins from the swimmers that have been absorbed from the pools that they are in for many hours everyday day. Cumulative Cupping treatments increase muscle endurance, circulation, lung capacity, lymphatic drainage and health maintenance during strenuous activities. Many professional athletes incorporate it into their training to enhance their overall performance, agility and ability to recover from their sports.
Stubborn conditions that may have been present for decades are easily resolved with Cupping. Nothing works better at opening up and releasing joints, connective tissue and muscles than the use of negative pressure and movement.
Myofascial Release and Trigger Point Cupping
Successful MFR stretches the fascia away from the underlying structures. Also occurring along the fascia are Trigger Points. Trigger Points are twisted bundles of fascia that are extremely sensitive to palpation and feel like tough, dense knots along the muscle. Trigger Points cause injuries over time because they break up the normal structure and operation of the fascia. With negative pressure, the fascia is gently stretched and unwinds without the discomfort of force.
Cellulite Cupping Treatments
Cellulite is mainly caused because of a genetic condition which causes fluid retention, an inefficient lymphatic drainage system and weak veins that result in ineffective blood circulation. Hormonal imbalances can also cause the development of more fat cells. These factors result in the fat cells lying under the skin converting into cellulite. This cellulite pushes up the cords connecting the skin to the underlying muscle and creates the ungainly appearance of the dimpled, orange peel look on the skin that is a sign of cellulite.
When suction is applied on the skin, the reverse pressure causes the cellulite to break up. Blood circulation is stimulated, and the fat and toxins that are released are moved to the lymph drainage network. Since cupping therapy also promotes a more efficient drainage of the lymph nodes, these toxins are quickly eliminated from the body.
Cupping is also known to ease the cords connecting the skin and muscle. In this way, fluid build-up is reduced and the skin develops a more cellulite-free healthy appearance.
History of Cupping
For centuries cultures have used cupping as medical treatment. In Chinese culture cupping has been used to help remove stagnation from the body and to increase the flow of Chi (life force). They, along with those practicing allopathic medicine have used cupping to divert blood flow from surgical sites. In early Egyptian cultures cups where used to treat fever, vertigo, pain, constipation and other illness. early on in history hollowed out horns were used to treat snake bites and infections of the skin in order to draw out the toxin or poison. The horn was eventually replaced by other methods of suctioning the body including bamboo cups, glass cups and plastic cups.
Traditional Chinese Medicine uses cupping in conjunction with moxa and acupuncture needles to restore Chi and to remove stagnation through the use of the meridian system. Negative Pressure Massage can be very effective in re-establishing healthy tissue and treating a number of conditions with great success.
The healing modalities portrayed on this website have not been evaluated for their efficacy by the FDA, AMA, or any government/medical agency, and are not intended to diagnose or treat any illness, injury, or ailment. If you have a history of, or are currently experiencing a medical problem, it is highly recommended that you first consult with your physician and discuss with him/her, all of the treatment options that are available. The information contained on this website is intended as a general reference and/or for educational purposes only. The healing modalities should not be construed as making any medical claims or as a substitute for consulting your physician or getting conventional medical exams or treatments.