What is Fascia?
Fascia are layers of fibrous connective tissue that permeates the entire body, surrounding muscles, groups of muscles, vessels and nerves, organs and endocrines, securing these structures in the same manner as plastic wrap holds the contents of a sandwich together.
A cup is applied to the skin and the pressure in the cup is reduced by suctioning out air, so that the skin and superficial muscle layer is drawn into and held in the cup. In some cases, the cup may be moved while the suction of skin is active, causing a regional pulling of the skin and muscle and therefore a more broad release.
Most manual massage therapy techniques involve positive pressure of pushing into the body, however Myofascial Cupping is unique in that negative pressure is the means for changing tissue adhesions. Though the skin may be temporarily discolored by red rings or hickey-like marks from the suction in the cup, this is not the intention of the therapy and therefore the success of the treatment is not gauged in this way.
How Myofascial Cupping Works
It creates a negative (tension) pressure which:
- Passively stretches tissue resulting in increased ROM
- Increases blood supply/heat to area treated
- Increases fluid movement which assists in recovery (ie. decreased edema)
- Increases nutrient-rich blood supply to injured area
- Draws out stagnation