What is cupping?

Cupping seems to be all the rage with athletes right now and for good reason, it works!  I have heard a lot of varying opinions since I first tried out cupping myself, some folks believe it’s a hoax and the benefit is just a placebo effect, others seem confused about it all together, some think it will be painful and others agree that it is absolutely fabulous.  In this post I hope to give you a clear and simple explanation of cupping so that you can go boldly forward to try it out for yourself!

Here we go….


The definition of cup·ping


noun: cupping

(in Chinese medicine) a therapy in which heated glass cups are applied to the skin along the meridians of the body, creating suction as a way of stimulating the flow of energy.

To add on to the dictionary definition cupping is used to stimulate blood flow, bring fresh blood to the area and increase healing. This means it is good for physical issues including injuries, muscle tension, pain, restricted movement and so much more!

Who can provide cupping treatments?

If you have a complimentary health care provider that you currently see my advice would be to check with them first for a recommendation.  If not you can visit us at Written on the Body!  Both Theresa and Richard offer cupping treatments in addition to Acupuncture to our clients.  Or you can seek out an acupuncturist, massage therapist or naturopathic physician who is trained in cupping.

What happens during a cupping treatment?

After a thorough intake with your practitioner they will have you disrobe the affected area.  Some practitioners might use a tiny amount of oil to prepare your skin for the cupping procedure.  There are different types of cupping, some use glass cups and fire to create suction and others use plastic cups that have tiny built in pumps to draw the air out.  Whichever type of cups used you will feel the flesh being sucked up into the cups, typically this is not painful but depending on your specific issue it can become a little more intense.  If it is too uncomfortable you can always let your practitioner know so that they can release some of the suction.  Some therapists will let the cups sit for a time (seconds to a few minutes) and others will move the cups around similar to a massaging motion.

What happens after a cupping treatment?

After your practitioner removes the cups you may feel some tenderness in the area but it typically fades within 24 hours, you may also feel more tired than usual as your body works hard to heal itself.  You will most likely have deep red or purple marks where the cups have been placed but they do not feel painful.  These marks are caused by stagnant blood and toxins coming to the surface and will fade within a week or so.  You will probably feel better!  You might notice more freedom and less pain in the areas that have been cupped.  If you get regular treatments and have a good self care routine you may even make a full recovery from injuries or other chronic issues.

Cupping in the news:

The Portland Trail Blazers added cupping into their injury prevention and recovery routines:


Floyd Mayweather recently got cupping:



Cupping is an ancient healing practice and this blog post is just a short adventure into what it is all about.  To really understand it you will need to experience it and learn about the philosophies surrounding traditional Chinese medicine.

Have more questions?  Leave them in the comments or email us at wonthebody@gmail.com.  Thanks for reading and we look forward to working with you soon!  Book online today.

Is pain after a massage normal?

Have you ever gotten a great massage only to have pain the next day?  Pain after a massage can be a normal part of healing.

If you haven’t had a massage in a while, are brand new to massage or have a new issue that you are working on the chances are fairly high that you might experience some level of pain in the day or two following a massage.  There are many explanations for this and though the experience and specifics will be unique to each person there are a few standard reasons on why this phenomenon happens:

  • Everyone has muscular patterns that have been created and reinforced over time and sometimes these patterns aren’t healthy resulting in inefficient ways of moving.  The result is an overall imbalance with some muscles being tight and shortened while others are weak and overstretched.  Eventually this can cause pain and/or injury as well as a sort of numbness.  When massage begins to help release these unbalanced muscle patterns, the body has to adjust to a new and unfamiliar way of being, which can feel uncomfortable or even painful for a time.  This is also the reason that regular massage combined with a self care plan is so important. As you might imagine it will take quite some time and effort to undo something that took so long to create.

  • Your massage therapist may move your body in a way that it is not accustomed to and just like a new exercise routine it can cause fatigue or soreness the following day or two.  Staying active, hot baths with Epsom salts, ice therapy or heat therapy can help ease this type of discomfort as your body adjusts to these new feelings.

  • There is a lot of controversy surrounding detoxification and massage, I don’t want to add fuel to this debate in any way.  I will stick to this:  massage increases circulation and stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system which can sometimes cause an overload to your mind and body.  Especially when it hasn’t experienced these sensations before, recently or if your body’s resources are going toward healing another issue such as an injury at the time of your massage.  Drinking water, resting and taking care of yourself in general following a massage is important to lessening the possibility of fatigue or pain response.

Not all pain is created equal and it is always important to communicate with your massage therapist during your treatment.  You should ask your therapist to lighten up on the pressure if you are experiencing pain during your massage that is sharp, shooting, numbing, tingling or 7+ on a pain scale of 1-10 (1 being very little to no pain and 10 being severe pain).  You should always be able to breathe during your massage and if all your muscles are tensed against the pressure it defeats the purpose of trying to get tense muscles to let go.  Good pain is ok but beyond that pain is not beneficial to your health.  If you are experiencing sensations during or after a massage that seem abnormal you should communicate them to your therapist and if you think something is wrong it may be a good idea to check in with your doctor.   In general there is nothing abnormal about experiencing a little pain after massage and it will likely stop happening after you begin to get regular treatments.

We are looking forward to seeing you soon!  Book online today:)

Should I get a massage?

should I get massage?

Have you ever thought to yourself “Should I get a massage?” If so then this post is for you!

If you are experiencing any of the following issues then massage is definitely right for you:

  • First and most important is that you enjoy being touched and find it comforting

  • If you have a serious medical condition or specific concern surrounding massage you should get clearance from your doctor before making an appointment

  • You live a high stress lifestyle and have limited time for yourself-massage can be a great way to reward yourself for working so hard and can help you feel renewed after giving so much to your job/family/friends/business etc…

  • You experience chronic pain-often times people believe they have to live with pain but this is not always the case!  Regular massage treatments can help relieve or at the very least lessen chronic pain cycles.

  • You have tension headaches-massage can help loosen the muscles of the head neck and jaw to help you find release from the tension that causes headaches

  • You have a difficult time relaxing or shutting off your mind-massage, especially certain types of massage such as Thai and hot stone can be very effective in helping you wind down and find inner peace.

  • You are prone to injury involving pulled muscles and tears-massage truly can help unravel those long time patters of muscle tightness that eventually leads to injury.  It is no magic pill but with regular treatments and a good self care routine you will find that you can become more balanced.

These are just a few of the reasons massage might be a good fit for you!  If you have questions about your particular situation please feel free to drop me a line via email at wonthebody@gmail.com.  I will look forward to hearing from you!  Ready to book?  Head to our online booking site and set your appointment today:  Written on the Body Massage and Acupuncture Studio

3 ways to live a healthier and happier life in 2014

3 ways to live a healthier and happier life in 2014

I always slack a little on most of my routines (outside of hammock laying and beach going) through the Summer, we get such a short visit from the sun here in Portland that I feel justified in my laziness.  But It’s back to school time here in Oregon and I know that, like myself, many of you parents out there are ready to get back to the grind.  When the kids go back to school it becomes easier for us to get back on top of work, exercise, healthy eating habits and in general taking care of ourselves.  If you want to make a huge positive impact on your health and happiness you should try adding regular massage into your self care routine, you won’t believe what a difference it will make!  Still not sure?  Check out these great facts about the many ways regular massage can improve your overall well-being:

Find Relief from pain:

Millions of Americans suffer from pain and back pain seems to be the leader of the pack, in fact, low back pain is one of the most common reasons for missing work.   In fact, back pain is one of the most listed reasons for visits to the doctor’s office.  Treat low back pain with a combination of stretching, exercises and getting regular massage, acupuncture and/or chiropractic care.  It is important to remember that surgery or pharmaceuticals are not the only option for finding freedom from pain.  Many times with a little energy and regular self care you can live a happier and healthier life without the extra side effects that come with invasive surgery or drugs.healthier and happier life

Free yourself from Stress and Anxiety:

The world is always changing, moving more quickly, raising it’s expectations-heaping more and more onto our plates.  It is no wonder that many Americans are frequently suffering from bouts of depression, anxiety and insomnia.  Stress is a killer and if left unregulated it can cause all sorts of issues in the body.  Dr. Sheldon Cohen discovered in a 2012 study that “When under stress, cells of the immune system are unable to respond to hormonal control, and consequently, produce levels of inflammation that promote disease. Because inflammation plays a role in many diseases such as cardiovascular, asthma and autoimmune disorders, this model suggests why stress impacts them as well.”  Help yourself regulate stress hormones with massage.  Regular massage reduces the hormone cortisol in your body, and give the happiness inducing neurotransmitters serotonin and dopamine a boost.  Check out our buy 3 get 1 free massage packages and $55 monthly membership to get yourself on the path to freedom from stress today!

Look better, feel better and have more energy:

Speaking of stress, we all know it takes a toll on our energy levels as well as our appearance.  Weight gain or loss, dark bags under our eyes, dull skin and exhaustion are all common side effects of stress.  Massage can help these too by reducing stress levels and helping to boost your bodies natural healing abilities.  Massage also improves circulation and skin tone to promote that beautiful healthy glow we are all striving to achieve.    Learn more about the ways massage can help you feel and look better in this great article:  The amazing ways massage can help you look prettier

Living a healthier and happier life is contingent on a healthy routine including exercise, diet and self care.  Dedicate yourself to this cause-you are worth it!

Natural remedies for Neck Pain

Massage and Acupuncture are natural remedies for Neck pain

Neck pain is very common in our culture and there are many different reason’s a person can experience neck pain.  Some of these include poor posture, unhealthy holding patterns created by repetitive motion or overuse, injuries, structural issues and changes are just a few.  Neck pain can be very disruptive to a person’s everyday routine especially sleep patterns and regular work, when your body is chronically experiencing pain you are unable to function optimally.  This in addition to the possibility of permanent disability and severe injury are important reasons to address neck pain as early and aggressively as possible.  Here are some of the ways massage and acupuncture can help:

Acupuncture for neck pain:

acupuncture for neck pain

  • Can reduce spasms and lesson pain

  • Acupuncture can reduce inflammation and even obliterate it with regular treatments

  • Acupuncture promotes better blood flow through treated areas which promotes healing

  • Releases endorphins changing the way the brain and spinal cord perceives pain

  • Acupuncture addresses underlying issues such as stagnant energy, holding patterns, stress and other problems that are at the root of your neck pain

  • Cupping helps relax and break up stuck fascia and scar tissue freeing your body to move more efficiently

Massage for neck pain:

massage for neck pain

  • Increases blood flow which promotes healing

  • Decreases tension in muscles

  • Increases endorphin’s

  • Calms the body releasing tension all over the body rather than just in the select concentrated areas

  • Regular massage can help lengthen muscles that are shortened allowing your posture to correct itself

Consider massage and acupuncture as part of your health care plan, you are important and taking good care of your body is essential to living a long, healthy and happy life.  Check out our packages and memberships for affordable options in getting the treatment you need to become free of pain!

Happy hour appointments

$45-$55  Happy Hour massage and acupuncture appointments for the week of August 15th-21st

-These appointments are first come first served and are subject to availability.  Email to book at wonthebody@gmail.com and please email at least 2 hours in advance to book an appointment

Happy hour openings for today Friday August 15th:

3pm or 6:15pm with Bethany for $45/60 min Find Your Peace Massage

4pm or 7pm with Richard for $45/60 min Find Your Peace Massage or $55/60 min Acupuncture

Openings for Saturday August 16th:

11am or 12:30pm with Kathy for $45/60 min Find Your Peace Massage

9am, 10:30am or noon with Terry $55/60 min Acupuncture

3pm, 4:30pm or 6pm with Bethany or Richard for $45/60 min Find Your Peace Massage

Openings for Sunday August 17th:

3pm, 4:30pm or 6pm with Richard for a $45 Find Your Peace Massage or  $55/60 min Acupuncture

Openings for Tuesday August 19th:

10am, 11:30am or 1pm with Alexandra for $45/60 min Find Your Peace Massage

3pm, 4:30pm or 6pm with Kathy for $45/60 min Find Your Peace Massage

Openings for Wednesday August 20th:

4:30pm or 5:30pm with Terry $55/60 min Acupuncture

Openings for Thursday August 21st:

4:30pm or 6pm with Kathy for $45/60 min Find Your Peace Massage

3pm or 5:30pm with Terry $55/60 min Acupuncture

*you can add hot stones for $10 or deep tissue for $20  email wonthebody@gmail.com to book a happy hour appointment today!

Book other appointments online anytime!

Have a wonderful week:)





Take a Staycation with Rooftop Massage and Acupuncture!

Summer won’t last forever

it’s time to make help yourself live a happier and more relaxed life by taking advantage of Written on the Body’s Rooftop Massage and Acupuncture treatments!

rooftop massage and acupuncture

Rooftop relaxation featuring:


Click here to Book online by August 31st and take $20 off of your visit.

*make a note in your appointment that you are using the summer rooftop offer or first timer special for indoor appointments.   You are also welcome to call 503.473.8515 or email wonthebody@gmail.com to book if you prefer

Affordable massage for Portland, OR!

Do you need a massage but can’t figure out how to fit it into your budget?

Check out our affordable massage opportunities for a sliding scale option to get the relief your body and mind are longing for.  These opportunities are limited and will be given on a qualified and first come/first served basis so don’t wait,  Apply today!

To qualify please use the following worksheet guidelines (you may email us for a copy of the worksheet to download if you prefer at wonthebody@gmail.com): sliding_scale_income_worksheet
once you have determined the category you qualify for you may be offered the following pricing options for sliding scale massage:

  • A.  $40 per one hour Peace Massage

  • B.  $45 per one hour Peace Massage

  • C.  $55 per one hour Peace Massage

  • D.  $60 per one hour Peace Massage

  • E.  Full Price

*These sliding scale massage appointments are limited and are given on a first come first serve basis.  Please send the completed sliding scale form and  supporting income documents to wonthebody@gmail.com.  We will notify you within 7 business days if you have been approved and the timeline/therapist available for you to book within.  We retain full rights to ask you for updated information and to alter your fee and booking/therapist schedule at any time.  If we choose to do so we will notify you via email.  Our regular cancellation policy applies to all sliding scale appointments.

If you don’t qualify for our sliding scale massage opportunities we have many other ways to get regular massage on a budget!  Check out our VIP Membership starting as low as $55 per month or our Buy 3 get 1 Free Packages Here.

Whichever way you go we hope to see you soon!  Thanks for reading and have a wonderful day!

Awesome deals on massage and acupuncture Portland, OR

Find freedom from pain with these great summer deals on massage and acupuncture Portland, OR!

massage and acupuncture deals Portland, OR

Ease your aches and pains with Acupuncture and Cupping

$70 for a Private Acupuncture treatment plus fire cupping

Book online here and make a note that you are using the summer acupuncture special

deals on massage and acupuncture portland, or

Find Your Peace with Massage

We have 3 new massage therapists who will be starting within the next couple of weeks:  Summer, Kathleen and Richard (Rich is also an Acupuncturist and can combine his specialties into a beautiful blend of acupuncture and massage-email us for more info)
We would love to give you an opportunity to receive their excellent work and so we thought why not let you have a chance by allowing you to
use the $20 off first timer special when you book with a massage therapist that you haven’t worked with before! 
Just make a note that you are using the first therapist deal (good through 9/1/14) when you book your appointment online here.

deals on massage and acupuncture portland, or

Get relief from muscle tension with an Infrared Sauna Session

At half off for the whole summer you just can’t beat the price!  Book your appointment online today and make a note that you will be using the summer sauna special.


We hope to see you very soon!

Heat or Ice for injuries-what should you choose?

Heat or Ice for injuries-what should you choose?

Here is a great info-graphic on ice versus heat and how each of them work.  Remember that effective injury recovery involves the work you do at home as well as the treatments you receive from your health care team!

heat or ice for injuries

Other ways to help yourself heal:

  • Give yourself a break with sufficient time to rest and heal.  We know this can be frustrating because you want to get back to your life and things you love but this is the MOST important step in the process of healing.
  • Ice or heat for injuries:  from the beginning and through recovery-it will make a huge difference
  • Get help:  Physical therapy, Massage, Acupuncture, Personal Trainer’s, Chiropractic and other medical professionals can help you with a treatment plan to get you back to 100% as quickly as possible
  • Move:  Of course rest and a break from your routine is important but movement and gentle stretching is also important for a full recovery
  • Stay positive!  Stress does not promote healing, in fact it does the opposite, help your natural healing ability along by staying happy and relaxed, eating healthy, drinking water and getting plenty of sleep.  This may be the easiest step to forget but it can greatly impact the way your body heals itself.  If you feel caught in a rut with an injury take a look at your lifestyle and make adjustments as needed.

Thanks for reading and we hope to see you soon!

Have an injury we can help!  Book an injury treatment massage today:  https://clients.mindbodyonline.com/ASP/home.asp?studioid=158494