What in the heck is Cupping anyway?

There is a technique called cupping that has been around for at least the last 3,500 years, but has more recently become popular within our modern society. If you watched the 2016 Olympics, you may have seen Michael Phelps sporting a few purple spots on his back and shoulders. These pain free spots is what is known as as cupping marks, as he was using this healing technique in his self-care and recovery routine.

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Cupping is something you should definitely considers if you seek relief from stress, pain, fatigue, back pain, anxiety, or muscle aches.

And here's the best news, Massage Móvil is extremely excited to announce that we will be launching this new service at the end of the month starting Monday March 26th!

But first, is this something that is right for you? Read on to learn a little more about what Cupping is, how it may be able to help you and more.

 

What is cupping?

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Cupping is a technique where a vacuum is created in a cup, drawing the skin up into the cup and decompressing the layers of skin and fascia. This vacuum or suctioning effect creates negative pressure, unlike traditional bodywork where the practitioner is pushing into the muscle tissue. This negative pressure not only feels great, but loosens and lifts connective tissue, breaks up and drains stagnation in the circulatory and lymph systems allowing even more flow. It also engages the parasympathetic nervous system allowing a deeper relaxation.

Its important to understand that this technique can be practiced in many ways, and by different practitioners.  There is fire or dry cupping, where the glass cup is set on fire and as the fire goes out creates the suction, wet cupping, this is where the cup is left on the skin for up to three minutes and the practitioner will make small cuts on the skin to help remove stagnant blood, and even magnetic cupping where magnets may be used inside the cup to stimulate bio-magnetic energetic changes in the tissues. Some of these types of cupping techniques are actually outside the scope of practice for a Texas licensed massage therapist.

What Massage Móvil will be performing is Massage Cupping. This is where the massage therapist will move and glide the silicone cups across the skin, mimicking the movement of massage. 

 

Benefits of Cupping

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Cupping therapy offers several advantages and can affect different systems in your body.

Lymphatic System: Cupping stimulates the lymphatic system so it can move fluid through more quickly, it can also decrease swelling and increases the availably of lymphocytes and antibodies helping boost the immune system. 

Fascia: Cupping allows for the fascia to stretch within multiple planes, which regular massage and bodywork cannot accomplish. It also allows for the fascia to gently become more thixotropic, or fluid.

Circulatory System:  Cupping promotes blood capillary refill, it can increase circulation to tight and tense muscles and tissue.

Plainly put adding cupping to your session can help promote muscle healing and soothe sore and tired muscles, it can help improve your range of motion, it helps relieve pain and increases relaxation. 

 

Things to Consider

While it is safe when practiced by a professional, its important to still educate yourself on what to expect. 

Before any cupping session, discuss with the massage therapist any concerns you may have as well as why you think cupping may help. The massage therapist will ask about the type of pain your experiencing and where its located so they have a better idea of where to use the cups. 

When the cups are applied to your skin, you may experience a tight or pulling feeling, because your skin is being drawn into the cup. Often this is relaxing or soothing, but if it starts to cause any pain, then you need to let the massage therapist know so they can adjust. 

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Another thing to take into consideration, is that cupping can cause the skin to temporarily turn red, blue or purple, especially if there is an injury or blockage under the area that was cupped. This skin discoloration can last anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks, but is rarely painful. It is not the intention of the massage therapist to leave these marks, but it does sometimes happen. So if you plan on wearing that tank top or are going swimming soon after your treatment, you may be sporting some purple spots. 

One last thing to know is when cupping is not indicated for you. You're therapist will address this, but its important to be well informed yourself and to let the massage therapist know. So here is a brief list of contraindications to cupping: if you have any open wounds or active bleeding, if you are on blood thinners as this can cause severe bruising, if you have thin or fragile skin (cupping can still be practiced, but very lightly), if you are in kidney, liver or heart failure, if you suffer from hernias, deep vein thrombosis, ulcers, or cancer. Again, this is a brief list, so if you are unsure if this treatment is ok to receive ask your doctor and talk to your massage therapist.

 

Book Your Cupping Treatment

Massage Móvil will be introducing our brand new Cupping Treatment as an add on starting Monday March 26th and we want you to be as excited as we are for this!

So for the first 2 weeks, thats Monday March 26th, 2018 through Sunday April 8th, 2018 we will perform your first cupping add on completely complimentary!

Please note this does not include the cost of the massage. When booking online the cupping add on will not be available to book before March 26th, 2018, but be sure write in the notes that you intend to receive this service. This is limited to (1) one complimentary cupping add on per client. Please be aware if you are contraindicated or cannot receive cupping due to a medical condition the therapist will let you know at the time of service, we apologize for the inconvenience, but your safety comes first.