Active Suction Cupping

Suction Cups

applied to the surface of the body have been used to treat a wide variety of injuries and diseases for thousands of years in the Far East, and in many medical traditions around the world. For musculo-skeletal pain, cupping can work like reverse massage:

  • Stretches and mobilizes muscles, tendons, fascia, and underlying joints.
  • Triggers muscle relaxation reflexes.
  • Pumps blood and lymphatic fluid through tight, adhered or restricted muscles, removing wastes and bringing new oxygen and nutrients to injured areas.

Active Cupping combines moving an affected body region with the cups in place.

The movement can be performed either directly by the acupuncturist, or by the patient, under guidance by the acupuncturist. Active cupping increases the therapeutic effects of cupping through:

  • Actively engaging and mobilizing the underlying muscles, fascia and joints.
  • Reducing painful trigger points and adhesions.
  • Restoring normal muscle-tendon strength and flexibility, and joint range-of-motion.
  • Decreasing pain-inhibition to movement.

Active cupping can play an important role in rehabilitation of injured body regions.

Active cupping techniques are taught in the IAPM Program in Year 1 Modules 1-6 (Spine and Extremities) and in Year 2, Modules 10 and 11 (Myofascial Meridian Pain).