My first cupping experience came with a shiatsu massage from a terrific Japanese practitioner in Toowong, Brisbane. Her name is Meiki Araki. She has the shiatsu yoga studio on Jephson street. She doesn't speak a lot of English, and I was pretty excited the first time I rang to book and there was a Japanese voice on the phone. My thoughts, "The real thing". As a massage therapist, I get the usual shoulder, elbow and hand irritations that come with doing too much in the busy times of the year. My right shoulder was feeling pretty awful.
She came to the hotel I was staying with my young daughter. The treatment she gave me was memorable, in that it was quite different to any massage I'd had before. Meiki completed my experience with Cupping therapy. At first I didn't know what I'd let myself in for, but I love trying all kinds of massage and this was a new experience. It hurt a bit, not painful, but a pinchy feeling. She used glass cups with a suction device to create a vacuum in each vessel. It took about 7 minutes to put the cups on and they stayed on for about 10minutes. By the end of the 10 minutes, they had lost their pinch, replaced by a very warm feeling.
The most amazing the distinct detensioning of the back and shoulders when the cups are released. It feels unreal. But even more to my amazement was that the shoulder pain was gone,
to learn this amazing technique.
I get the same sort of feedback from my clients when I use it on their injuries. It is a great enhancement to any massage treatment. It works really well with shoulder and neck pain, and also with lower back pain. Probably the most thankful of my clients was a triathlete who injured his knee only days before leaving Norfolk Island to compete. Cupping to his Ilio-tibial band (the side of the thigh) released his knee instantly. Injury gone.
Cupping therapy has its origins in oriental medicine and has been practised for thousands of years. The cups were traditionally bamboo (readily available), then glass. The vacuum was created using flame to remove oxygen from the cup and then quickly applied to the body. The cups are applied along the meridians of the body, like acupuncture, or concentrated around areas of tension and pain. The red marks (not bruises) are more noticeable in areas of muscle tension and poor circulation and can remain visible for a couple of weeks. Cupping increases circulation, removes toxins and restores Qi (energy pathways) of the body. If you would like any further information about Chinese Cupping, contact me.