Cupping, moxa, gua sha
The use of fire cups to draw tension out of muscles is an old tradition found in many cultures including the Greek, Polish and Chinese. Cupping is great for general muscle tension, after hard physical work outs to increase blood circulation through the big muscles and ease pain. When you aid qi and blood circulation you encourage healing of the underlying
Gua sha or ‘spooning’ uses friction delivered via a ceramic spoon or horn implement. (We are not going to cuddle up ‘spoon’ like!) The swift, sweeping action of spooning over the affected muscle breaks down knots and opens up the flow of qi through the area. It is commonly used on the neck, shoulder, back and chest and can be used to relieve pain, chest congestion and the repair of tissue scarred by surgery or injury. Both cupping and spooning often leave temporary marks on the skin where the stagnant blood or body fluids have sat. These therapies are quick and may form part of a standard hour treatment or be delivered alone in a short follow up session.
Moxa is a deep, warming technique using an ignited herb – Folium Artemisia, to mobilize blood and remove cold from the body. It is wonderful for pains which are worsened with or feel cold, like some forms of arthritis, traumatic muscle tension, post-partum pain, post-surgical pain. Moxibustion can also be used to warm and strengthen the digestive and regulate the reproductive system. And what’s more…we also use moxibustion to facilitate the turning of breech presentation babies in the final weeks of pregnancy! Gold.