The Obscure Oriental Art of Gua Sha


Massage is a broad term that really encompasses over 200 modalities, all of which have unique histories and usages. Massage is often thought of as something beautiful and sacred, however not all modalities were made to be beautiful. Gua sha is a rather intense therapy that could be considered as one of the dark arts in massage. What gua sha looks like, is vastly different than what gua sha will make you feel like. Don't let her dark exterior fool you.

Gua sha is an ancient Chinese medical therapy and translates loosely into scraping sand. Sand refers to the texture of the muscle tissue, and gua means to scrape. The purpose of using a gua sha blade tool is to remove congestion or coldness from the body by creating transitory therapeutic petechiae. The rush of blood to the surface is truly healing as it brings nutrients and other bodily compounds front and center during your session.

This authentic therapy reminds us that true healing is needed at times, and our internal pains brought forth will not be very pretty once exposed. In Western philosophy, gua sha breaks down scar tissue, muscle adhesions, and lengthens muscles. The benefits are dissolved pain, improved range of motion, and healthier muscle tissues.

Those who particularly suffer from acute to chronic injuries such as musculoskeletal dysfunction, asthma, mastitis, hepatitis, migraines, and decreased range of motion from past traumas are some of the most common conditions that benefit from gua sha treatments. As the blood that was released from broken blood vessels is reabsorbed, the hemoglobin creates compounds within the body that perform anti-inflammatory duties.

As Halloween approaches, what a better time to debut the dark art of gua sha at Seventh Wonder Holistic Spa.

Angela Woods

Angela Woods


I've been doing massage since 2013. I studied and certified in South Cal, licensed ma, holistic practitioner and am a certified reflexologist. I perform many modalities, cranial sacral therapy, manual lymphatic drainage, Tui na and Shiatsu. I love to incorporate Lomi Lomi Massage (Hawaiian) into many of my sessions. I also enjoy gardening, I enjoy yoga and reading. I love animals and antique shopping.