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Cupping & Dry Needling

Cupping and dry needling can greatly ease pain, disease, and many other conditions. Where appropriate we may treat you with these techniques within your Remedial Massage or Sports & Deep Tissue Massage .


Cupping is usually associated with Traditional Chinese Medicine. However it was used in ancient Egyptian and Middle Eastern cultures also to help with many ailments.

What cupping can help with

  • Ease pain
  • Strained, tense, or over-used muscles
  • Gastro disorders
  • Lung diseases such as asthma, chronic cough
  • Paralysis
  • Clearer skin (improve appearance of varicose veins)
  • Clear colon blockages

Cupping benefits

  • Activates lymphatic system
  • Deep tissue repair
  • Release toxins
  • Promote blood circulation
  • Activate lymphatic system
  • Activate and clear veins, arteries, and capillaries

How cupping works

Cups are placed on your skin and a vacuum is created when the pressure in the cup reduces - by heat or suction. Your skin is pulled and held into the cup for up to 10 minutes, depending on what condition is being treated. The cups may stay in place, and may also be slid across your skin using oil.

This gets the blood flowing better which has positive effects on many aspects of the body, and can help with the healing process of many ailments.

Cupping FAQs

What are the side effects of cupping?
During cupping, the skin is pulled and stretched into the cups. How strongly this occurs depends on the pressure applied, which depends on your body type and what you are being treated for.

You may experience a warm sensation, and loosening of the area. Circles will appear where the cups have been applied. The different shades of red (or black) circles will gradually disappear.

What are cups made out of? 
Cups can be made of glass, bamboo, or earthenware.

Dry Needling

Knots in a muscle can often lead to pain in other parts of your body.

Dry needling is an excellent way to get into those stubborn, tender, deep knots in a muscle that just don’t seem to respond to manual therapy (massage by hand). It’s a fast and effective way to give you more range of motion, and reduce muscle or tension pain.

Dry needling is a technique that may be part of your Remedial Massage or Sports & Deep Tissue Massage.

Our massage therapist will treat you with in-depth knowledge and understanding of the connections between your pain and the source of your pain - and how dry needling can give you the most relief.

What dry needling can help with

  • Tennis elbow
  • Back and neck pain
  • Headaches
  • Hamstrings
  • Shin splints
  • Muscular tightness

Dry needling benefits

  • Reduce inflammation
  • Improve muscle strength
  • Better coordination
  • Promote blood flow
  • Wider range of motion
  • Reduce muscle or tension pain

How dry needling works

Say you have pain down your thigh to your ankle.

Your massage therapist will focus on the trigger point (group of contracted muscles) deep at the side of your hip. Until this moment, you may not notice this point is actually painful.

A solid, very fine needle skilfully inserted into this trigger point will produce a ‘twitch’ - your muscle fibres at this trigger point will contract involuntarily, before your muscles relax. You can expect to feel a pleasant feeling or release and relaxation, and less (or no) pain down your leg soon afterwards.

Dry needling FAQs

Does dry needling hurt?
Dry needling generally doesn’t hurt, although it is different for everyone. What you should expect is an uncomfortable feeling in your muscle when it ‘twitches’.

The twitch is an involuntary reaction from your spinal cord reflex. It tightens or contracts your muscle briefly, like a last gasp, before it surrenders to relaxation. And releases the tension and pain caused by the tight knot.

What’s the difference between dry needling and acupuncture? 
The same fine, solid needle is used in both forms of treatment. Both may relieve pain and tension. However dry needling focuses on releasing trigger points, knots in muscles. Acupuncture is a technique of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) - it focuses on stimulating the body’s energy systems.

What are the side effects?
During, or very soon after the treatment, you are likely to feel a heaviness in your limbs, as well as a sense of release and relaxation. You may later feel energised, and sleep better.

This treatment is safe with an experienced and skilled therapist who use sterile disposable needles.

Serious side effects are rare. Please let us know if you have:

  • Needle phobia
  • History of pneumothorax
  • Metal allergy
  • Vascular disease
  • Abnormal bleeding

Dry needling is a common technique used by physiotherapists as well as massage therapists.