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Different Ways to Utilize your Cups

Cupping is the simple concept of creating a lift in the tissue. This can be thought of as negative pressure as opposed to what you may receive from a massage therapy or deep tissue which is positive pressure downwards towards the body. This aspect combined with the way you use it can provide a plethora of benefits.

Cupping has a rich history dating back to ancient Egypt and early Chinese era. Traditional Chinese Medicine used to believe that "cupping and acupuncture combined, more than 1/2 of the illnesses can be cured.” Cupping was originally used in surgery as a way to divert blood away from the surgical site. Learn more about the history of cupping by visiting this blog: The History Of Cupping Therapy

What types of way can you use cupping?

Cupping can be used in a variety of different ways. Each type of movement can provide a variety of benefits and match the client's needs and therapist's goals.

Dynamic Cupping:

This is done by creating suction and moving the cup. This can be more intense but is less likely to leave marks.

Therapist Hint: Following a negative pressure cup with a positive pressure fist or forearm is a amazing movement.

*Click pictures to watch videos

Static Cupping:

This means you keep the cup(s) at one spot on the body. This means you can work in other areas while the cups release the tissue. This style of cupping is also more likely to bring up stagnation.

Therapist Hint: Try having cups on one side of the back while doing soft tissue work on the other to drastically increase the effectiveness and result longevity of your sessions.

*Click pictures to watch videos

Myofascial Decompression:

This cupping technique can be thought of as static cups with the client moving their body. This allows for a far greater release of the tissue by stretching all the underlying layers through the cup. While this can be intense one of the nice aspects is the client can do the movement putting them in control of the treatment so they can make it as intense as they would like.

*Click pictures to watch videos

Flash Cupping:

Flash cupping is done by repeatedly quickly creating a lift and releasing it. This is a great way to boost overall circulation to the area as well as get myofascial work accomplished without feeling overwhelming while avoiding possible marks.

Styles of Cups:

Cups come in a variety of different forms and this has changed as we evolve. What used to be more common in ancient times such as horn and bamboo is now replace with plastic vacuum cups, glass cups for fire, and a variety of silicone to allow easy use. Finding out which style(s) is right for the body takes exploration.


Cupping has a rich history and has been effectively used through many eras of history. It is not only a great addition to any massage but a highly effective self-care tool. With the variety of ways you can cup it makes this an extremely versatile technique that is easily implemented into any treatment session.

Self-care tip: Many Level Up clients have a set of silicone at home to use in the shower first thing in the morning just by using soap to get a glide.

Learn More about Cupping here: Cupping Specialty

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