Cupping therapy is an ancient form of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Cupping is used worldwide. Its usage dates back to as far as 1,550 B.C. There are different forms of cupping; the most common are dry, wet, and fire cupping. At Resilient Acupuncture we use exclusively fire cupping. Cups are applied onto the skin and a suction is created, pulling the skin up. It is meant to increase blood flow to certain areas to the body which results in decreased pain and increased circulation.

Instead of turning to traditional medications or painkillers, you may be curious about trying alternative treatments. These include acupuncture, Tui Na Massage and even cupping.

Cupping really went mainstream after the 2016 Summer Olympics. During the Olympics, swimmer Michael Phelps had purple suction marks from cupping on his back. Phelps swears by cupping as a way to deal with soreness and pain during training and competition. People also use it for day to day pains like working at a desk for long hours, asthmas and sciatica.

What exactly is cupping?

The marks from cupping may look intimidating at first, but they are actually just the result of suction on your skin. It creates a myofascial release in the tissues and most people find it very pleasant and relaxing. You can think of this as a reverse massage where we can create space in between the muscles for oxygen to circulate. This releases stagnation and increases blood flow, something we all need a lot more of in our lives. It is safe for people of all ages and ailments.

How does it work?

With fire cupping a suction is created using a small flame that is briefly held in the cup to remove the oxygen. This creates a vacuum. The fire never touches anything other than the cup and it completely safe. There are some great you tube videos to help ease your fear. We will have one posted here for you shortly.

What are the benefits of cupping?

Cupping is beneficial for individuals with injuries, pain, and inflammation, as well as stress, anxiety, and other emotional issues. It is even used for facial rejuvenation and cellulite reduction.

The following conditions may also benefit from cupping therapy:

Congestion, the common cold, asthma, and allergies

Digestive issues





Systemic Inflammation

Back detail of a young woman who just underwent an acupuncture fire cupping treatment

Cupping can benefit overall health by removing toxins and stimulating the healthy flow of blood and energy, or qi, in the body. This can provide relief from a variety of conditions, including pain. In TCM, if the qi is not moving, there is pain. But pain can be decreased by stimulating the flow of blood and qi.


Ready to find out more?

Contact Kelly Hoeffner L.Ac. M.S.TCM for scheduling and other questions.