On Track Physiotherapy

Cupping in Ann Arbor

Find Lasting Relief with Cupping Therapy at On Track Physiotherapy in Ann Arbor

Have nagging muscle tension or chronic pain held you back from the active lifestyle you want? You’re not alone. Over 50 million adults in the US struggle with chronic pain conditions that drain the joy from exercise and physical activity. But what if we told you there’s a centuries-old healing technique that could help relax your muscles, improve circulation, and potentially reduce your pain – without pills or invasive treatments?

At On Track Physiotherapy, we’re proud to offer cupping therapy: a dynamic treatment that uses targeted suction to literally “lift” tension out of tissues. Think of it like a reverse massage! Keep reading to learn how our customized cupping treatments can get you back to pain-free movement.

How Cupping Therapy Works

Cupping has been used for over 3,500 years in traditional Chinese medicine and by healers across Asia, the Middle East, and Europe. It involves placing specialized cups on the skin and creating suction. As the air is removed, it gently draws the skin, connective tissues, and muscles up into the cup.

This suctioning effect has a number of proposed benefits:

  • Increases blood flow to treated areas
  • Promotes relaxation of tense muscles
  • Loosens stiffness/adhesions in connective tissues
  • Supports the body’s natural healing abilities

The suction and resulting skin reddening (not to be confused with bruising) is temporary – usually subsiding within a few days. And the relaxation of tissues can provide lasting relief.

At On Track Physiotherapy, our experienced physical therapists use a modern cupping massage technique tailored to your unique needs. We customize the suction intensity and placement based on your pain patterns, tension, and goals. This tailored approach helps create lasting changes without discomfort. Want to see if cupping therapy is right for you? Keep reading to learn how it can help or schedule a consultation today.

Who Can Benefit from Cupping?

Cupping is used to support individuals struggling with:

  • Chronic headaches/migraines
  • Back, shoulder, and neck tension
  • Muscle pain and soreness
  • Scar tissue discomfort
  • Cellulite appearance
  • Stress and fatigue
  • And much more

It’s particularly helpful for athletes or formerly active people hoping to return to their sport or training after injury. The muscle relaxation and tissue mobilizing effects make it easier to rebuild strength and mobility.

Cupping complements other physical therapy treatments beautifully. It’s often combined with massage, stretches, joint mobilization, and rehab exercises. In addition to that, it’s suitable for most ages and fitness levels when applied properly. So if you’re eager to wave goodbye to stiffness, tension, and pain, cupping therapy may be for you! Continue reading to learn the top benefits or schedule a consultation now to get started.

4 Major Benefits of Cupping Therapy

Here’s an overview of the top perks our clients experience with regular cupping treatments:

1. Potential Pain Relief and Muscle Relaxation
The gentle suctioning action of cupping physically draws tense tissues upwards into the cup. This mobilizes stiffness and adhesion in muscles and connective tissues that contribute to chronic tension, aches, and limb or joint restrictions. As these tissues stretch and relax, clients often report:

  • Decreased muscle soreness
  • Reduced discomfort from tension headaches, upper back/neck aches, and lower back pain
  • A liberating release of tightness in shoulders and hips
  • Improved range of motion in joints like wrists, elbows, and ankles

The boost in local blood flow may also positively impact recovery from strains or sports injuries. Of course, cupping is not a magic bullet for chronic pain. Your therapist will advise how often treatments are needed based on your condition for sustained relief. However, many people find it effective for soothing tense, achy muscles when performed regularly.

2. Enhanced Sense of Well-Being and Relaxation
Interestingly, cupping often creates a pleasant decompression-like sensation. As tissues lift into the cup, feelings of tension diffuse and a deeper relaxation emerges throughout the body. Sessions have an almost meditative quality. Cupping kicks off a cascade of positive effects:

  • Physical relaxation brings mental calmness
  • Pain relief enhances mood
  • Improved circulation energizes the whole body

The net result is many people leave their session with an elevated mood, clearer mindset, and renewed energy that lasts for days. It’s like hitting the “refresh” button! This makes cupping an excellent addition to self-care routines for stress management and fatigue. It complements approaches like therapy, meditation, journaling, and movement that create lasting well-being.

3. Improved Blood Flow and Circulation
As tissues gently fill the cups, localized blood flow to the area increases. This brings fresh oxygen and nutrients to nourish tissues. Better circulation through regular cupping may support:

  • Healthy skin and connective tissue
  • Muscle recovery after intense exercise
  • Healing of strains, sprains, or injuries
  • Potential reduction in the appearance of cellulite
  • Improved immune function

Enhancing blood flow promotes tissue resilience – helping your body stay supple and bounce back faster from life’s bumps and bruises. Who couldn’t use that?

4. Potential Benefits for Other Conditions
Cupping is often used alongside other treatments for issues like:

  • Respiratory conditions
  • Skin complications
  • Inflammation
  • Fatigue
  • Stress and anxiety
  • Digestive troubles
  • And much more

However, more research is needed to confirm cupping’s efficacy as a standalone therapy for these chronic diseases. At On Track Physiotherapy, your therapist will review your full health history and lifestyle to determine if cupping may be beneficial. We’ll also advise you on any conditions that are contraindicated.

The power of cupping truly shines through when combined with a full treatment plan including physical therapy, nutrition support, mental health, and medical care as needed. Let our team help you put together the pieces to achieve lasting relief!

Frequently Asked Cupping Questions

If you’re new to cupping therapy, it’s totally normal to have some questions about the treatment and what to expect. Here are answers to some of our most common queries:

What is cupping therapy used for?
Cupping promotes wellness by:

  • Increasing blood flow
  • Soothing chronic muscle tension
  • Supporting connective tissue health
  • Relaxing the nervous system


    • It’s primarily used to help individuals find relief from issues like back/neck/shoulder pain, headaches, fatigue, anxiety, cellulite, and scar tissue discomfort. Some also use it to complement the treatment of respiratory conditions, and skin complications like eczema, inflammation, and digestive troubles.

      Is cupping good for your body?
      Yes, in most cases cupping is very beneficial! It supports overall health without negative side effects when performed by a licensed professional. As with any treatment, individuals with certain conditions like bleeding disorders, aneurysms, or blood clotting issues should avoid cupping. Pregnant women may also want to exercise caution.

      What should you not do after cupping?
      Avoid hot baths, showers, saunas, or hot tubs for up to 72 hours after treatment. Heat can make the circular cupping marks last longer. Also avoid aggressive exfoliation, harsh skin products, or scrubbing for a few days. This allows any tiny vessels broken by suctioning to fully heal. Besides that, you can return to normal activities! The lightheaded sensation some feel immediately after treatment resolves within about 15 minutes.

      • Does cupping remove toxins?
        Maybe! Traditional practices explain cupping’s benefits through toxin removal effects.
        By mobilizing stiffness and scar tissue, some waste products likely diffuse out of tissues. The improved blood flow can whisk these away. However, more research is needed to conclusively state that cupping directly removes toxins or provides detoxification benefits. Either way, most clients feel refreshed and renewed after a session!

      Still have questions? Reach out any time! Our therapists are happy to explain whether cupping therapy is suitable for your needs.

      Meet Your Cupping Therapy Team

      Dr. Morgan Kennedy, DPT, TPI, FDN, CIMT,             CAFS joined On Track Physiotherapy to help those struggling with chronic pain post-injury. She is dedicated to finding relief through all forms of therapy like cupping, which has proven valuable in our community.

      Next Steps: Start Healing with Cupping Therapy Today
      Ready to wave goodbye to aches, pains, and stiffness holding you back? At On Track Physiotherapy, we offer flexible scheduling for appointments. Click here to book your consultation online to get started.

      In your initial visit, Dr. Morgan Kennedy takes a detailed health history and assesses your posture and movement patterns to identify issues cupping may help. She’ll explain the treatment process so you know exactly what to expect. You’ll leave your first session feeling refreshed, renewed, and optimistic about finally finding relief! We can’t wait to work with you.

      About the Author

      Dr. Greg Schaible, a Physical Therapist specializing in Certified Strength & Conditioning and Sports Rehab, puts patients at the forefront of his care. With years of experience, he guides individuals towards achieving their best selves. At On Track Physiotherapy in Ann Arbor, Dr. Greg Schaible crafts individualized plans using cutting-edge techniques, empowering patients to overcome limitations and thrive.

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      Aaron A

      My oldest (13) has worked with Morgan for the past few months- with results appearing almost immediately. A variety of different modalities punctuates a comprehensive regimine designed to not just get him back on the field, but keep him there. The progress he made was immense. Friendly and personable staff, no frills office and workspace, no wasted effort, and results beyond expectation. You will not find another practice that cares more about their clients. I cannot recommend ‘On Track’ enough. Five stars.

      Danny Mingledorff

      I contacted On Track because of a nagging hamstring injury and concern about my ability to run the Free Press half marathon. Morgan identified the source of the issue and worked with me to come up with a routine I could do at home. I was able to run the half without the extreme discomfort I had been experiencing and performed much better than my training had indicated. Morgan has a great personality and really works with the client to diagnose the root cause and prepare a treatment plan to enable you to reach your desired outcome.