Use of suction to draw out stagnancy and heat
The ancient practice of cupping therapy is found in traditional medicine systems in every continent worldwide.
Ask your therapist about the relevance of adding cupping therapy to your Thai Massage session.
What is cupping?
Some think of this method as a reverse approach to that of massage. Instead of applying pressure, the fascia is drawn up into the vacuum created inside a cup over the targeted areas. The cups typically stay in place for around 5-15 minutes and may or may not be painful or uncomfortable. Used for a countless array of problems from illness to acute and chronic injury, cupping is a versatile and effective tool that can be both therapeutic and diagnostic.
How it is done.
There are many different ways to employ the treatment, with the most common being Fire Cupping and Suction Cupping. Fire cupping uses glass cups applied to the skin using a flame placed momentarily inside the cup to create a vacuum as the heat dissipates. Suction cupping employs many different tools. The ones that we use are silicone cups. Silicone cups are much more user-friendly and safer than using fire. There are situations in which fire cupping is more advantageous for your benefit, so if you really want to explore this, ask your therapist about it.
How does it feel?
The sensations vary greatly from an enjoyable tug on one end of the spectrum to something quite stabbing and painful on the other end of the spectrum. I have a love/hate feeling from the cups, depending on where they are placed, but the immediate relief that I get from pain in one of my knees is incomparable.
Cupping leaves a mark.
By now just about everyone is familiar with the marks that are made by the use of the cups. Some might wear these marks like a badge of honor. Some may not want the marks to show on the skin in public areas and are ok with having them in areas of the body that do not show. Let your therapist know your personal preferences. There are ways to employ the use of the cups without leaving the dark circles.
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