Cupping refers to an ancient Chinese practice in which a cup is applied to the skin and the
pressure in the cup is reduced (by using change in heat or by suctioning out air), so that the skin
and superficial muscle layer is drawn into and held in the cup. This treatment has some relation
to certain massage techniques, such as the rapid skin pinching along the back that is an important
aspect of tuina. Cupping is applied by acupuncturists to certain acupuncture points, as well as to
regions of the body that are affected by pain (where the pain is deeper than the tissues to be
pulled). Generally, the cup is left in place for about 10 minutes (typical range is 5–15 minutes).
The skin becomes reddened due to the congestion of blood flow. The cup is removed by
pressing the skin along side it to allow some outside air to leak into it, thus equalizing the
pressure and releasing it. In some cases, the cup may be moved while the suction of skin is
active, causing a regional pulling of the skin and muscle (the technique is called gliding
The Benefits of Acupressure Cupping:
- Safe: The needles are punctured under skin while the cups are just sucked on skin. Avid any
infection or injury by needles.
- Simple and Easy to use: Acupuncture needles use hand or electricity and need more
experience or supplies while the cupping uses its negative pressure to stimulate acupoints and
meridians and simple, easy to use.
Cupping is mainly recommended for the treatment of pain, gastro-intestinal disorders, lung
diseases (especially chronic cough and asthma), and paralysis, though it can be used for other
disorders as well. This ability to ensure nerve responsiveness creates a natural enhanced and
accelerated healing response in the body.