Saturday, January 18, 2014

Adventures in Alternative Health: Cupping

“The core of mans' spirit comes from new experiences.” – Christopher McCandless

Was I attacked by a squid? Abducted by aliens? No…I tried cupping. People who know me well know that I will try anything health related at least once, and I always keep an open mind. So when I won a 50 minute essential oil massage with cupping at “Our Sacred Space Wellness Center” as part of their “12 days of Christmas giveaway,” I was super excited to have the chance to try something new.

So what is cupping? Well, it’s an ancient Chinese art designed to alleviate pain and improve blood flow to key parts of the body. As far as I could find (in my limited internet research), there isn’t any scientific proof that defends cupping’s effectiveness, but the fact that it’s lasted this long as an alternative therapy got me interested.

When I arrived at my Our Sacred Space Wellness Center for my cupping experience, Tish immediately put me at ease. I’ve got to Our Sacred Space Wellness Center before (and received fabulous massages by Lynetta Denniston) so I knew I was going to have a great experience. After an inspiring conversation, Tish showed me what the cups looked like, and how they worked. I was definitely nervous, but a pre-massage melted away my nerves.

The actual cups themselves didn’t hurt in the way that I’d expected, they just felt a little uncomfortable, like a really deep tissue massage. I never felt pain, and if I had, I’m sure Trish would have released the suction. But I wanted the full experience and toughed out any discomfort for the few minutes that the cups were on suction.

In the end, I don’t know if it was the cupping or the amazing massage that Tish gave me, but I felt buttery and tranquil for the rest of the day.

It was a great adventure, but Holy Bruises Batman! For the rest of the day I looked like I had giant hickies on my back. It’s probably because I’m a red-headed, pretty-much-albino girl that my body had this reaction, and it took a few days for them to be mostly faded.  I should say that they didn’t hurt, not even a little. My spouse poked me a few times just to check haha.

Life is a journey, and I’m glad I gifted myself that experience. Every massage I’ve gotten at OSSWC has been both a physical and spiritual experience, and one that I’m always grateful for. I’ll leave you with this wonderful quote from Eleanor Roosevelt: "The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experiences."