Cupping is used to promote circulation while removing stagnation and releasing tight muscle tissue. Once applied to a large muscle area, for example, the back, skin is lifted so that fascia may release in a therapeutic manner. After the cups are applied, it may be used diagnostically to determine if there is qi or blood stagnation or cold lodged in the channels.
Cupping may be applied three ways: sliding, flash-cupping, or stagnating cupping. There may be some bruising after the cupping session which normally only lasts between 3-7 days. Most people report an immediate improvement after receiving this type of treatment.