What is it?
I have a page on my website which is related to Chinese Cupping and Gua Sha but as lots of people ask me about it, I thought it time I wrote a post.
So what is cupping and gua sha?
Well...basically, cupping and gua sha is a way of moving stagnation or release tightness and tension in the body. When muscles and tissues are tight and tense they cause pain. We've all have had the painful shoulder or neck, sometimes its the back, or even other areas of the body. Cupping and gua sha help release this and so helps to ease pain. It also helps release stress and is good to use instead of acupuncture needles, for the needle phobic people out there.
I have quite a few clients that see me regularly for cupping, and love it. My fibromyalgia patients adore it as it helps release the tight areas and reduces pain. The feedback I recieve is truly wonderful, people can raise their arms, sleep better, no headaches, feel calmer the list goes on.
Does it hurt?
This has to be the number one question I get asked about cupping and gua sha...and the honest answer is it depends on the individual.
If you have a a lot of stagnation or tightness / tension it can be a little uncomfortable at the beginning of cupping and gua sha, but as the muscles and tissues relax the discomfort eases and it begins to feel quite nice. My patients describe it as a 'good pain' and very much like when you have a massage and you have been tense. Its uncomfortable at the beginning, but feels good to release the tightness. The gua sha picture looks truly horrific, but this patient was in agony with her neck before we started and had severe restriction on movement. She also had terrible headaches which made her feel nauseous. The red marks you see is called petechiae and is old red blood cells being released from the tight areas. Once we had completed the treatment she felt amazing, she could move her neck and the headache had gone.
Both cupping and gua sha are anti inflammatory and immune stimulating, not to mention pain relieving. All my clients love it, so if you are thinking of trying it then give it a go but remember always book with a qualified pracitioner, look for their experience and make sure you feedback to your practitioner if anything is really painful. These therapies should not be agony so don't suffer in silence.
If you want to make an appointment please get in touch with me via my contact page.