Cupping is a technique
that is especially useful in the treatment of problems of local qi,
or blood stagnation in the channels, and is usually performed as an
alternative to acupuncture.
The cups that
are used are generally of rounded glass construction. The cups are
warmed via a burning taper, held for a very short period of time inside
the cup. The cup is then quickly placed over the selected area.
Due to the candle
flame, all of the oxygen in the cup has been removed and when placed
open side down, a vacuum is created, which anchors the cup to the skin
and pulls the skin upward on the inside of the glass.
pressure encourages the flow of qi and blood in the area beneath the
cup, and the local stagnation begins to clear.
It is imperative
that this method only be performed by licensed practitioners, and even
when performed correctly, can result in marking (non permanent) and