Gua Sha

Gua Sha (pronounce Gwah Shar) is a form of press-stroking massage originating from East Asia using a smooth-edged tool with steady pressure in different length strokes to release the myofascial of muscles, tendons and ligaments.

This releases toxins, fluid and blood from the subcutis leaving behind erythema (skin redness) and petechiae which is small, red rash-like dots on the skin that can be mistaken for bruising.


The treatment uses a specialist warming mild analgesic enhancing the relaxation and the practitioner will use the implement over the skin with a steady direction and pressure which is deeply enjoyable, as they feel the blood stasis being dispersed and the sinews loosening.


Gua Sha can produce an anti-inflammatory and immune protective effect making it very beneficial for detoxification, treating hepatitis, liver and renal issues as well as treating auto-immune and inflammatory disorders. it also helps to treat all chronic pain, tight muscles, headaches, migraines, neck pain, back sprains and as it is often performed on the upper torso it benefits respiratory conditions such as Asthma, bronchitis, COPD and emphysema.


Interestingly research has found that it may assist in Tourette’s syndrome when adjacent to acupuncture. Gua Sha has been found beneficial in breast engorgement and reducing the risks of mastitis when taught to lactating mothers for home treatment.

Gua Sha as with most massage therapie’z is relatively safe when performed by a FULLY QUALIFIED, EXPERIENCED PROFESSIONAL; however, for some people the skin may react to the treatment and the effects of releasing stagnation may make the patient feel different.

Some of the experiences may include:  

  • Bruises

  • Fatigue

  • Headaches

  • Mild discomfort, Muscle tension or soreness

  • Nausea

  • Skin infections, itching or scarring.

Gua Sha is NOT RECCOMENDED for people taking anticoagulants or blood clotting medication. 


After Gua sha, the patient may have some markings called petechiae which fades within 7-14 days, this is not bruising but red raised millet sized dots like a rash where the toxins have come out of the capillaries at the same time as blood circulation in that area increases. They may cause some mild discomfort initially. Please discuss with the practitioner prior to treatment if this visible marking may be an issue.

cups guasha.jpg

Gua Sha is often combined with Cupping as seen in the above picture. This petechiae may cause mild discomfort in the first 12 - 24 hours post treatment only. It will fade over the next 7 - 21 days depending on depth of treatment required. If the location of the petechiae or its visibility creates any concern please discuss this with the practitioner prior to treatment; this is especially important when wearing open-backed clothing for function for example.  

Gua Sha Aftercare Advice.

To gain the most from your Gua Sha treatment, its recommended to do the following:

  1. Increase your water intake over the following 7 days to enhance the detoxification process, you could also try more herbal or fruit teas and juices to assist the process.

  2. Avoid alcohol,  caffeine, energy drinks or recreational drugs for 24 hours after the treatment and 12 hours prior to treatment.

  3. Try to reduce or avoid smoking, vaping and all nicotine / tobacco products over the next 48 hours.

  4. Avoid strenuous activities, heavy exercise or long drives for 24 hours after treatment, your body needs time for Rest and Relaxation. 

  5. Avoid hot baths, Showers, Saunas, Sunbeds or Sunbathing for 12 hours after treatment. 

  6. Try to reduce stress, maybe try light exercise, going for a walk, breathing or mediation to help. 

  7. Avoid having any other treatments for 48 hours afterwards to prevent interactions occurring.

  8. Where oils have been used, please leave them on the skin as long as possible. 

  9. Follow any specific aftercare advice given following the treatment. 


For Gua Sha massage prices, please CLICK HERE