I nonetheless bear in mind the primary time two rows of completely spaced darkish brown circles on somebody’s again caught my eye. It was years in the past in a yoga class, and I assumed it was trigger for concern. It jogged my memory of a recreation we used to play as youngsters referred to as “sting pong,” the place a misplaced level leads to a ping-pong-sized welt within the again or chest. (I don’t suggest it!) But it surely wasn’t lengthy earlier than wellness web tradition knowledgeable me what actually made these welts: a session of Ventosa therapeutic massage, AKA cupping.
Featured picture by Riley Reed.
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Ventosa Massage: The Wellness Trend That’s Making Waves in 2023
It’s been a few years since the ancient Chinese practice of ventosa massage cemented itself in our Western wellness lexicon, but it’s still fair to have plenty of questions about the dramatic-looking body therapy, which has similar results to a massage, but uses an entirely different method. (Instead of pushing down, cupping pulls the layers of muscle and fascia apart to promote blood flow.)
For some expert guidance on cupping (including what exactly those dark circles indicate), we tapped Kurt Laukoter, a Texas acupuncturist who has a master’s degree in Chinese medicine. Kurt is a massage therapist and esthetician at Hiatus Spa in Austin (a favourite of the Camille Kinds workforce!). Kurt shared the what and the why behind all issues cupping—plus all the pieces you want to know earlier than making it part of your wellness routine.
How did cupping or Ventosa massage become more prevalent in Western culture?
Cupping or Ventosa massage became more popular in Western culture when the 2016 Olympics aired and professional athletes like Michael Phelps had markings from cupping on their our bodies. It looks like that second created a development for Western tradition and shortly after, different celebrities and the general public started doing cupping as nicely.
What sort of cupping methodology does Hiatus use?
At Hiatus, cupping can be utilized as an add-on to a therapeutic massage service and there’s a particular remedy referred to as the Swimsuit of Cups therapeutic massage, a 60-minute service that entails cupping and therapeutic massage.
Because the acupuncturist at Hiatus, I exploit three totally different types of cupping together with fireplace with glass, silicone with a pump, and silicone hand squeeze cups. Fireplace with glass is the strongest type of cupping with the strongest suction, which I exploit on purchasers who particularly ask for it or if they’re seasoned with cupping therapies. Cupping could be stationary or the cups can be utilized in a sliding methodology. With stationary cups, I’ll usually go away them on for 10-Quarter-hour.
What are the advantages of Ventosa therapeutic massage?
Ventosa therapeutic massage or cupping remedy advantages embody improved blood move and lymphatic circulation; promotion of deep rest; discount of swelling and congestion; and deep tissue advantages just like a therapeutic massage for relieving ache, tightness, and soreness throughout the physique.
What do the totally different circles post-cupping point out?
The totally different circles post-cupping could be darkish purple to purple to a lighter pores and skin tone colour. When you have darkish purple marks after cupping, it’s a manifestation of blood stasis within the physique in keeping with Chinese language drugs. In Chinese language drugs, blood stasis can point out sharp stabbing ache within the physique as a result of blood being stagnant and never getting correct circulation. If a marking is lighter, there may be much less blood stasis and that space of the physique could not want as a lot cupping.
I therapeutic massage an space for 5 to 10 minutes earlier than cupping as a result of I’ve observed that it helps the consumer have fewer darkish marks. Cupping is a secure remedy and the darkish marks could seem like bruises, however they’re a manifestation of the blood stasis that’s coming to the floor to be dispersed for ache reduction. Shoppers really feel relaxed and lighter after cupping just like a therapeutic massage or acupuncture. The marks from cupping will not be painful and can normally disappear after every week.
What must you do (or keep away from doing) after getting a Ventosa therapeutic massage?
After getting a Ventosa therapeutic massage or cupping remedy, I like to recommend avoiding extraordinarily scorching or chilly temperatures and intense exercises. I additionally suggest avoiding deep tissue massages till the darker marks have pale.