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The Use of Cupping Therapy in Sports Massage

Updated: Apr 19, 2023

Cupping therapy has been used for centuries as an alternative form of medical treatment. This specialised technique involves creating a vacuum in glass, silicone, or plastic cups and placing them on the skin to draw blood to the surface of the skin.

In sports massage, cupping therapy is utilised in combination with other massage techniques to alleviate muscle tension and pain, increase range of motion and flexibility, and promote healing and relaxation. In this blog, we will explore in more detail the use of cupping therapy in sports massage, how it works, and the benefits that athletes can gain from this technique.

Cupping therapy is typically performed by trained sports massage therapists who use cups of various sizes, shapes, and materials to create a vacuum on the client's skin. The suction created by the cups can lift and separate the layers of skin and fascia, increase blood flow and oxygen supply, and stimulate the lymphatic system. The cups are typically left in place for a few minutes, after which they are removed and followed by other massage techniques such as Swedish or deep-tissue massage.

One of the primary benefits of cupping therapy in sports massage is its ability to alleviate muscle tension and pain. Athletes often suffer from muscle tightness and soreness, and cupping therapy can help to break up adhesions and scar tissue that have formed within the muscle fibres. The vacuum created by the cups can also stimulate the nervous system, providing pain relief by desensitising trigger points, reducing inflammation, and increasing circulation.

Another benefit of cupping therapy in sports massage is its ability to increase range of motion and flexibility. Athletes who are flexible and mobile can more easily adapt to changes in speed and direction, resulting in improved athletic performance. Cupping therapy helps to improve tissue pliability, which can enhance a client's ability to move freely, with less restriction and pain.

In addition, cupping therapy is known to promote relaxation, decrease stress levels, and enhance overall well-being. Many athletes experience high levels of pressure and anxiety, and incorporating cupping therapy into their sports massage routine can help to reduce stress, promote feelings of calmness and relaxation, and provide a sense of balance and harmony.

Cupping therapy has also been shown to have specific benefits for athletes with certain injuries, including strains, sprains, and overuse injuries. The technique can aid in the repair and regeneration of injured tissue, reduce swelling and inflammation, and speed up the healing process.

If you are interested in find out more, contact a member of our team today! Cupping can be included in any of our sports massage therapies.

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