Will it help you keep your mind focused? I am not sure, but probably not. Cupping has more effect locally than it does systemically.
Cupping therapy usually takes care of muscular problems or injuries. Not sure if it can make you focus.
Cupping can be very relaxing and help an athlete’s muscles work at optimal level especially if they are tense. For helping the mind to focus, acupuncture may be a better choice, as it releases endorphins and balances other neurotransmitters for the mental benefits you seek.
Cupping will not make your mind focused. In Chinese medicine, cupping's function is for relief of muscle spasm or cramp, and to improve the circulation.
Thank you, have a great day.
Dr. David Chen
Cupping helps draw out unnecessary substances from the body, it's a great way to detox and relief muscle tensions. For example, if you are a swimmer, you're soaked in water and chlorine frequently, so, in Chinese medicine philosophy, there could be too much dampness in the body, or chlorine toxicity. Cupping can help with these conditions. It might not directly help you keep your mind "focused," but detox and muscle tension relief in general can help you feel more relaxed and clean - hence indirectly affect your mood/focus. But usually, cupping is not associated with mind focusing if that's what you're asking.
Hope I've answered your questions.
Alexandre Hillairet, DAOM.
Cupping done on athletes, such as Phelps, that leaves the dark marks is usually indicative of what we call "blood stagnation" i.e. the blood in the muscles wasn't flowing freely (due to overuse and overstrain). The cupping sucks up the "stuck blood' (causing marks) and then the fresh blood can flow more easily. The marks are an indication that the stagnation was there, but marks do not always show up when people get cupped regularly.
In a sense, the muscle aches being released and the blood flowing better could help you focus more on skills than the pain, but it's not designed to help you focus as primary strategy.
On a side note, cupping is also used to help open the surface and clear out stagnation that leads the coughing and phlegm we get with colds and flus. Being a swimmer could make you more susceptible to catching these, so not only can it help relive muscle pain but can help remove or reduce the time you have colds or flu signs. Make sure you see a licensed practitioner if you choose to go, so they can advise you of proper pre and post session cautions.
Your question about keeping your mind focused as an athlete is an important one. Ability to focus helps in preventing injuries in great part. Preventing injuries including repetitive injuries is the key to a long healthy life as an athlete. Traditional Chinese medicine, where the practice of cupping comes from, in some ways can help with focus in reducing stress overall and helping with recovery. Athletes tend to forget about the importance of rest and recovery. Cupping can help with that. It is not a direct link cupping = 3D focus. Promoting your health, healing from workouts, resting, etc., these all help the mind to recover as well and hence improve focus. Stress reduction is the key to all of life, whether we are an athlete or not.
Good luck and take good care of yourself,