What Exactly is Cupping and How Can It Help You?

By: Jade Somboonthum, PT, DPT

Myofascial decompression, better known as cupping therapy, has been popularized over the past couple of years.  Although its emergence into the mainstream has been recent, its origin is of ancient eastern medicine.  The most notable use of cupping therapy was during the 2016 Olympics by Michael Phelps.  You can still see athletes today in the NBA, NFL, etc. using cupping therapy to help with recovery and offer a competitive edge against their opponents.

So how exactly does it work?

  1. Cupping releases tight muscles.
  2. Decreases the condensing of muscle and fascial layers that limit movement
  3. Releases trigger points and brings in blood flow and nutrients into the affected area
  4. Separates out the deep connective tissue elements that are dysfunctional

The only downside to cupping is the bruise-like circle that it leaves on your skin.  However, this mark is not truly a bruise; rather a byproduct of physiological processes occurring in your fascial layers.

Benefits from cupping therapy include decreased pain and tightness, increased range of motion and mobility, and enhanced neuromuscular control of your muscles

If you are interested in cupping therapy or have any questions, please feel free to reach out to us!

Disclaimer:  If you continue to experience unbearable, reoccurring pain, be sure to schedule an appointment with your physician or join our physical therapy family and allow us to help you regain function.

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