The Popular Holistic Treatment You've Been Wanting To Try But Haven't (Yet)

I was running on 5 hours of sleep (tops) and a weekend of multiple lattes, bagels, and my fav ginger biscuits from the original hipster bakery in the OS. In other words, yours truly was a health and wellness hot mess.

Good thing I'd already scheduled an appointment at Emerging Energy in PVD to try cupping, the ancient Chinese treatment that, via special suction cups (made from materials like glass or plastic) applied to the back as well as other areas of the bod, is said to help improve circulation (I was told by another holistic practionioner many yrs ago that mine sucks.), detoxify, relieve pain and inflammation, and promote both healing and relaxation. (When I told a friend about this appointment, she wanted to know everything because apparently, several Real Housewives, from the Bravo shows of the same name, also get this done. Who flipping knew?)

Thing is, cupping therapy has become pretty popular over the last few years, beginning famously with paparazzi shots of Gwyneth Paltrow way back in 2003 (She's a trail blazer in terms of Eastern medicine going mainstream for sure.) and Jen Aniston showing off the red, circular marks on their backs (in strapless on the red carpet no less!), and more recently with the buzz last year around Olympic Gold Medalist Michael Phelps' affinity for the treatment also known as reverse massage, actually a form of acupuncture dating back thousands of yrs. While standard massage pushes into tissue, cupping is all about the vacuum created by the suction that pulls tissue up, resulting in an improvement of blood flow to muscles, tendons & connective tissue.

For whatever reason, I've only just gotten around to giving it a whirl, but I'd definitely go back again. After motoring over to EE's space in the Jewelry District and having a nice consult/chat (Stiff shoulders from hunching over my lap top, digestive probs, and Raynaud's are all issues for me currently.) with Dr Dilks, a regular contributor to this blog btw, it was time. Yeah, I was a little nervous about the whole thing, but the mild tugging I felt at the get-go was really no biggie. Walking out the door, I felt refreshed and a whole lot less crummy than when I'd started out that morning, and totally ok with the minor red-ish marks on my back too because (I understand) they usually heal in about 3-5 days.

+ For more from Dr Mary Claire Dilks about cupping, click here.

+ Photo Credits: All photos above are courtesy of Olivia Gird Photography. (Yes, that is Dr Dilks cupping, but no, that's not me on the table.)