Cupping therapy, an alternative healing practice, has gained popularity in recent years due to its many potential health benefits. Originating from traditional Chinese medicine, this therapy involves placing cups on the skin to create a suction effect. While it may seem intimidating at first, understanding what to expect during your first cupping session can help ease any apprehensions and allow you to fully enjoy its benefits.

In this blog post, we’ll guide you through the entire process and help you understand what you can expect during your first time cupping session.

  1. Preparation

Before your cupping session, it’s essential to prepare yourself both mentally and physically. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

a. Wear Comfortable Clothing: Loose-fitting garments will make it easier for your practitioner to access the treatment areas. Many people opt for shorts or a swimsuit.

b. Hydration: Stay well-hydrated before the session, as this can help your body respond better to the treatment.

c. Discuss Your Concerns: Be sure to communicate with your practitioner any specific health concerns or questions you might have about the therapy.

  1. The Procedure

During your cupping session, here’s what you can expect:

a. Cup Placement: The therapist will apply cups to your skin using various methods, including fire cupping (heating the cups with fire), suction cupping (using a vacuum pump), or even silicone cups. The cups are generally left in place for a few minutes.

b. Suction Sensation: As the cups create a suction effect, you’ll feel a tightness or pulling sensation on your skin. It might feel a bit unusual at first, but it should not be painful. In fact, many people find it quite relaxing.

c. Different Techniques: Your therapist may use different techniques, such as stationary cups (cups placed and left still) or moving cups (cups moved around the skin). The choice of technique depends on your specific needs and the practitioner’s expertise.

  1. After the Session

Once your cupping session is complete, you might experience some immediate effects:

a. Cup Marks: Cupping often leaves behind circular marks on the skin. These marks can range in color from light pink to dark red or even purple. Don’t be alarmed; they are temporary and usually disappear within a few days to a week.

b. Improved Blood Circulation: Many people report feeling more relaxed and experiencing improved blood circulation after a cupping session. This can lead to reduced muscle tension and pain relief.

c. Post-treatment Care: Your practitioner may recommend staying hydrated, avoiding strenuous physical activity for a day or two, and keeping the treatment area warm to help alleviate any discomfort.


Your first time cupping experience can be both intriguing and therapeutic. While the procedure might seem unconventional, it’s essential to remember that cupping has been used for centuries in various cultures as a natural healing technique. By understanding what to expect before, during, and after your session, you can make the most of the experience and potentially reap the many benefits it offers. If you’re curious about cupping therapy, give it a try and consult with a qualified practitioner to ensure a safe and beneficial experience.