Gua Sha Therapy
By now, most of you have probably seen or used Gua Sha tools on your face. Maybe you have a roller or one of the scrapers waiting right now in your refrigerator for your nightly skincare routine.
But did you know that those tools can be used for so much more?
Did you know that there are more than just the usual roller and scraper that you see everywhere?
Firstly, a direct translation from Mandarin of Gua Sha is “to scrape sand.” These tools have been in use in China for over 4,000 years, even back to the Ming Dynasty. They have been a part of traditional Chinese medicine, used not just on the face but on the whole body, and used to move “chi” or energy along the meridians, or lines of energy in the body. Additionally, they have been and still are used to increase circulation, release tension, move lymph, and reduce inflammation.
Gua Sha tools are incorporated into massage therapy for a highly effective and unique technique. Your therapist will locate tense tissue and then use the tool to gently increase circulation in that area. This can help with a variety of muscle issues, tension headaches, migraines, and neck pain.
Here are some studies that show the variety of Gua Sha Therapy Benefits:
- Women found that perimenopause symptoms, such as sweating, insomnia, and headaches, were reduced after Gua Sha.
- A 2014 study found that Gua Sha improved the range of movement and reduced pain in people who used computers frequently compared with a control group that had no treatment.
- In a 2017 study, weightlifters who had Gua Sha felt that lifting weights took less effort after treatment. This could suggest that the treatment speeds up muscle recovery.
- Older adults with back pain were treated with either Gua Sha or a hot pack. Both treatments relieved symptoms equally well, but the effects of Gua Sha lasted longer. After a week, those who had received Gua Sha Treatment reported greater flexibility and less back pain than the other group.
Please note: if you have a medical condition affecting your skin or veins, or you are on medications like blood thinners, let your therapist know.