Before the United States started wracking up medals in Rio (and before #Lochtegate was a thing!), some of the buzz at the 2016 Summer Olympics was centered around appearances. Many wondered, what are those mysterious purple circles covering the shoulders, backs and legs of so many athletes? And why is Michael Phelps Instagramming it? It turns out, there’s no cause for alarm. Those bruises are just the result of an ancient Chinese medicinal practice called cupping.
It’s pretty simple and not exactly scientifically proven to work, yet world-class athletes have embraced cupping for its pain-relieving and recovery benefits. Small glass cups are heated up and placed on the body. The skin underneath each cup is suctioned upward for a few minutes, causing capillaries to break and blood to circulate to the area. Then the body knows it’s time to get to work and start rebuilding that tissue quickly.
“The cupping actually jump-starts the body’s natural healing process. You can increase blood flow and let the body do what it does to help resolve the issue,” says Dr. Houman Danesh of Mount Sinai Hospital.
And it’s not just your favorite gymnasts and swimmers that have become cuppers. There are physical therapy, chiropractor and acupuncture clinics around the United States that offer cupping therapy to patients, in conjunction with other treatments, to relieve chronic pain and help speed up healing. Cupping is also said to help reduce stress, improve skin conditions and even aid digestion issues.
So what do you think? Would you try it? Do you think this trend will catch on? Vote and tell us what you think — you can even submit video comments to email@example.com. We will feature the results of the poll and some of your comments on the show!
i say no because ouch that will hurt
If athletes can do it why can’t I? Cupping is so the the next big thing
I think it is cool, but if you are sore than you should get a massage It seems painful so I say no.
Cupping is a fast and easy way for athletes to releve pain.
My answer is yes and no.
I see what you mean, and I agree that it’s good for recovery, but why do it if you don’t need too?