What is gua sha?
Sometimes called scraping therapy massage, Gua Sha is the practice of scraping the back, neck, shoulders, or chest with a flat, rounded massage tool.
The red marks that surface are ‘sha’ which is said to be cellular debris — lymph, blood cells, etc. — trapped in the tissue. Gua sha is used for pain relief especially for those who store stress in the back and shoulders.
Gua sha is most often used to relieve muscle and joint pain. Conditions of the muscles and bones are known as musculoskeletal disorders. Some examples include back pain, tendon strain, and carpal tunnel syndrome.
A gentle version of it is even used on the face as a facial technique.
The Guasha Treatment Therapy
Gua sha is intended to address stagnant energy, called chi, in the body that practitioners believe may be responsible for inflammation.
Inflammation is characterised by a hot, red, swollen and often painful localised area. Inflammation can occur from an injury, an infection or a toxic, to mention just a few causes.
In fact, gua sha therapy has been shown in studies to increase micro-circulation by 400%, clear inflammation and increase immunity.
Guasha Stone Benefits
Gua sha therapy helps disperse toxins by increased circulation and aiding the lymphatic and immune systems. Then as the blood is reabsorbed by the body it promotes an enzyme with anti-inflammatory and immune boosting properties
The gua sha massage tools are materials with smooth edges, such as chinaware, silver coins, bamboo plates, jade tool and buffalo horn. The therapist will apply oil to the area of the body that is being treated, which allows moving the tool across the skin more smoothly.
The gua sha therapist will press the massage tool into the body with smooth, firm strokes in one direction.
As your therapist proceed, you will notice the “sha,” red blotches that indicate blood flow near the surface of your body. These indicate the presence of “blood stagnation;” if none exists, the skin will simply turn pink.
After your treatment, you should feel a reduction in pain and other symptoms. As you engage in more treatments, you will likely see fewer sha blotches and feel your condition steadily improve.