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Understanding A Few Cupping Techniques To Start With

by Camila Davidson

If you have sore muscles and tendons and want to relieve some of your discomfort, then you may want to try a natural technique called cupping to release some of the tension. Cupping is an ancient eastern medicine practice that involves the placement of cups on the skin that create pressure by lifting and sucking the tissues into a plastic or glass container. And if you are new to cupping, then there are some things to know about the various techniques that you can use.

Start With a Stationary Technique

The most basic and beginner cupping technique involves a stationary one where cups are placed on the skin and are kept in place for a period of time. This allows for tension release and is a good practice for areas where you notice pinpointed muscle pain. Also, you can use the cups over trigger or pressure points according to your reflexology chart. 

To begin, you want to use low pressure for only a short period of time. This can help you to get used to the technique while also minimizing stress that can lead to muscle tears and soft tissue damage. Start with only one or two cups and secure them for one or two minutes. As you advance, you can increase the time up to about 10 minutes per session with multiple cups. 

As a beginner, you do want to use cups that utilize suctioning or air extraction. Air extraction allows you to use a small tool to release air from an opening on the top of the cup. You can increase the pressure a small amount with the tool allowing for more customization, which is not possible with the suction cups.

Try Cup Gliding

Once you get used to the feel of the stationary cups and figure out the ideal intensity for your needs, you can start moving the cups across the skin. This is called a gliding technique and can be used to loosen sore muscles along an entire muscle group. While the stationary cupping can be completed without the use of lotions, creams, or oils, but this is not true of the gliding technique. You must use a lubricant or you may tear the skin. Massage lotions, baby oil, and olive oil are all good options for lubrication. 

You want to glide the cup a short distance to start and you also should use minimal pressure. So, secure the cups with slightly less pressure than you would use for the stationary technique. Move the cup slowly and pay close attention to how this feels. The movement is usually a bit uncomfortable and you will feel some muscle stretching and pulling. However, the cupping should not be painful. Stop if you feel pain and adjust the pressure.

Reach out to a professional to learn more about cupping therapy