Reflexology is a science which deals with the principle that there are reflex areas in the feet and hands which correspond to all of the glands, organs and parts of the body. Stimulating these reflexes properly can help many health problems in a natural way, a type of preventative maintenance.
Reflexology is a serious advance in the health field and should not be confused with massage.
How does Reflexology work?
By applying pressure to reflexes on the feet with thumbs and fingers, we are able to detect any imbalances which may be as a result of stress, illness or injury working these reflexes in a very specific way to initiate a beneficial response in a corresponding area of the body, incorporating meridian points (acupuncture points) and advanced techniques to encourage your body to achieve 'homeostasis'.
All the systems of the body are worked on the feet, musculoskeletal, respiratory, digestive, urinary, endocrine, nervous, and lymphatic.
Reflexology is a deeply relaxing treatment and some people even fall asleep during treatment, however you may feel some tenderness in certain areas corresponding to parts of the body which are out of balance, but this is usually momentarily as the therapist will adjust the pressure to work within your tolerance.
Reflexology isn't ticklish and pressure can range from a feather like touch, ideal for babies and those with extremely sensitive feet, to a firm pressure for individuals who prefer a much deeper treatment.
"Reflexology is a therapy which can be received by anyone at any age, from newborn babies to those receiving end of life care, and everyone in between. However, there may occasionally be times when it is not suitable to provide a treatment"
Will reflexology help you?
Reflexology is a very individual treatment which is tailored to you as a whole person, taking into account both physical and non-physical factors that might be affecting your wellbeing. Some people find it works for them - some don't. The best way to find out is to try it!
The theory is that reflexology helps the body to restore its balance naturally. Usually, after a treatment your tension may be reduced and you might feel relaxed. You might also notice yourself sleeping better and find your mood and sense of wellbeing improving. You may also find that other aspects improve too; however, this happens on an individual basis.
There have been some positive research projects carried out with reflexology; however, as yet, there is not a large enough body of evidence for us to make clinical claims of effectiveness.
Let's summerize Reflexology Benefits
Working the entire foot opens nerve pathways and blockages and promotes relaxation throughout the body... Reflexology may be one of the ways to mitigate the stresses of modern life.
- Cure colds/minor ailments
- Prevent/cure diseases
- Increase energy
- Relieve stress, pain, and anxiety
- Improve blood and lymph circulation
- Prevent injury
- Relieve pain from MS and chemotherapy
- Stimulate activity of internal organs
- Successfully treat liver dysfunction, constipation, IBS, chronic headaches, and skin allergies
- Relieve pressure on legs and feet in pregnant women
- Relieve digestive problems
- Helps chronic diseases
Is Reflexology New?
The origins of Reflexology evidently reach back to ancient Egypt as evidenced by inscriptions found in the physician’s tomb at Saqqara in Egypt. The translation of the hieroglyphics are as follows: "Don’t hurt me." The practitioner’s reply:- " I shall act so you praise me. "
|The Zone Theory was the precursor to modern Reflexology which began with Dr. William H. Fitzgerald, M.D. whom Dr. Edwin Bowers, M.D., encouraged to publish the many articles he had written on the subject of Zone Analgesia. In the forward to their combined book, "Relieving Pain At Home" published in, 1917, he wrote, "Humanity is awakening to the fact that sickness, in a large percentage of cases, is an error - of body and mind". How true this has proved to be. Dr. Fitzgerald, was an Ear, Nose and Throat specialist working at the Boston City Hospital, as well as at St Francis Hospital in Connecticut.|
|He called his work Zone Analgesia where pressure was applied to the corresponding bony eminence or to the zones corresponding to the location of the injury. He also used pressure points on the tongue, palate and the back of the pharynx wall in order to achieve the desired result of pain relief or analgesia. He made use of the following tools: elastic bands, clothes pegs and aluminum combs, on the hands, surgical clamps for the tongue, nasal probes and a regular palpebral retractor for the pharynx, He was responsible for formulating the first chart on the longitudinal zones of the body.
Dr. Fitzgerald discovered a very interesting fact, that the application of pressure on the zones not only relieved pain but in the majority of cases also relieved the underlying cause as well.
The same result is experienced through Reflexology today, which is based partially on the Zone Theory. Dr. Shelby Riley, M.D. worked closely with Dr. Fitzgerald and developed the Zone Theory further. It seems that he added horizontal zones across the hands and feet, together with the longitudinal zones and thus determining individual reflexes according to the Zone Theory. He, like Fitzgerald, espoused continual pressure on the reflex or point of contact.
Eunice D. Ingham, a Physical Therapist, worked closely with Dr. Riley and was fascinated by the concept of Zone Therapy and started developing her foot reflex theory in the early 1930's. She had the opportunity to treat hundreds of patients where each reflex point of contact had been carefully and thoughtfully checked and rechecked until with all confidence she was able to determine that the reflexes on the feet were an exact mirror image of the organs of the body. Dr. Riley encouraged her to write her first book entitled "Stories The Feet Can Tell" where she documented her cases and carefully mapped out the reflexes on the feet as we know them today.
Reflexology is Giving LOVE...
"From the Feet to the Heart!"
- Nun Gabrielia