Chinese Fire Cupping

Fire cupping at The RetreatDating back back to 300AD, Chinese fire cupping is a therapy used in traditional Chinese medicine to remove blockages of Qi (vital energy, fluids, lymph, phlegm, and blood) to restore your body’s natural flow of energy. The therapeutic treatment uses warmed cups to create suction on your skin to ease pain and inflammation – to increase blood flow and encourage relaxation and well-being.

Widely used to treat a range of health conditions, cupping has most recently been popularised by its use by Olympic athletes and Hollywood celebrities alike. This therapy is known to help improve athletic performance, as well as to prevent and heal musculoskeletal pain and injuries. The process works to manually increase blood flow and circulation, reducing inflammation as well as all different types of chronic and acute pain.

Along with improving blood flow, cupping is proven to stimulate the autonomic nervous system—which is responsible for the function of internal organs—restoring balance and supporting heart health and digestion. There is a proven correlation between cupping and elevated blood oxygen levels , which is especially beneficial for patients with certain blood disorders (such as anemia) and for patients with conditions affecting the lungs or respiratory system, including (COPD). For this reason, cupping is commonly used to prevent and relieve cold and flu symptoms.

When used to stimulate the lymphatic system, cupping is quite effective in the reduction of toxins, hormonal imbalances, and fluid retention.

Therapists often use cupping to relieve conditions that cause pain. Research suggests it may also help with chronic (ongoing) health issues. Cupping may ease symptoms of:

Arthritis, including rheumatoid arthritis.
Back pain, neck pain, knee pain and shoulder pain.
Breathing problems, such as asthma.
Sports Injuries
Gastrointestinal disorders, such as irritable bowel disease (IBD).
Headaches and migraines.
High blood pressure (hypertension).

Auto Immune issues such as fibromyalgia

This treatment focuses on increasing blood flow to remove both physical and emotional stagnation. For this reason, it is unsurprising that patients commonly report lower levels of depression, anxiety, insomnia, and even fatigue after cupping sessions. Due to the calming effect on your nervous system, it is possible that you will experience an increase or decrease in energy, during or after your appointment. You might also feel a rush or release of emotion. This is completely normal, and a healthy part of your body’s healing process.

As is true of most holistic treatments, the goal of a cupping session is to bring complete balance to the body and mind in the most natural possible way. This treatment is a safe option for most clients. Whether you’re looking for relief from a specific ailment or you just want a general health boost, cupping very likely has something to offer you!


I practice traditional Chinese Fire Cupping, with glass cups. A typical treatment will include a gentle massage with oils, sliding cupping to massage and static cups if necessary to treat particular areas that are identified as in need. A full consultation is necessary before any treatment.