New Delhi: You may have noticed a bunch of athletes at the Rio Olympics with weird large purple and red circles all over their skin, including 21-time Olympic gold medal winner Michael Phelps.
Well, the dots are the result of an ancient form of therapy called Hijama or Cupping , a technique practised mostly in Middle Eastern and Asian countries for thousands of years.
Hijama (means ‘drawing out’ ) or Cupping therapy, a non-surgical procedure that uses small suction cups to drawn out toxic or ‘bad’ blood from the body.
Chinese adopted Cupping therapy or Hijama to treat certain diseases, the Arabs have adopted it as an integral part of Islamic Prophetic Medicine.
It was a common practice of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and his companions for the treatment of a range of ailments as well as different diseases and bodily disorders.
It can be performed different ways and help to treat sore muscles, back problems, and other general aches.
Michael has apparently been doing this to feel good for a long time, about 2 years.
Michael Phelps isn’t the only athlete adorned with polka dotted US gymnast Alex Naddour and Belarus swimmer Pavel Sankovich has also been seen with the purple blotches too limbs and backs.
“That’s been the secret that I have had through this year that keeps me healthy,” Naddour told USA Today. “It’s been better than any money I’ve spent on anything else.”
Celebrities like Jennifer Aniston, Jessica Simpson and Gwyneth Paltrow have all been spotted with the marks in previous years.