Reflexology is an ancient natural healing art based on the principle that there are reflexes in the feet, hands and ears which correspond to every muscle, joint, gland and organ of the body. By applying pressure on specific reflex points a Reflexologist can stimulate the corresponding organs or glands, thus helping to restore normal functioning of the various systems of the body. Reflexology aims to improve your health by reducing tension, inducing deep relaxation and increasing circulation.
When a reflexologist acupresses (applies pressure with his/her fingers) specific points on the hands or feet, this excites the nerve endings, sending an electric impulse to the particular organ, gland or part of the body this particular nerve serves. Reflexology thus works through the “autonomic nervous system”, and the effect can be compared to that of an internal massage. Reflexology is also known to stimulate the release of endorphins (feel good hormones) in the body.
Because Reflexology is safe for most people at any age and has no negative side-effects, it is an ideal therapy which can help relieve numerous chronic and stress-related issues. You may try reflexology to help:
Reflexology stands alone and separate from other therapies. However, it may enhance and/or complement other therapies. It is ideal prior to osteopathic and chiropractic treatments or physiotherapy, as well as pre- and post surgery.
Reflexology is basically safe for everyone at any age and has no negative side effects. If, however, you have any of the following, talk to your reflexologist and/or doctor first. In some instances, it may be better to postpone reflexology treatments to a later date:
Pregnancy (1st trimester); breast and/or lymphatic cancers; infectious diseases; plantar warts; severe bruises; open wounds; inflammation; fever; swelling; phlebitis; varicose veins; broken bones.
Reflexologists are taught to work with care and respect in accordance with the level of health, wellbeing and age of the client. Our main goal is always to relax the person receiving.
At your first visit, I will ask some questions about your health & lifestyle. The more your reflexologist knows about your health history, the better she can tailor the treatment sessions to your needs. I will then ask you to lie down fully dressed on a massage table or sit in an anti-gravity chair. You need only remove your shoes and socks. I begin the session by doing some relaxation techniques on the foot, which are designed to “warm up” the areas to be worked on and will then work specific points in a methodical way, adapting the pressure to your comfort level. It is very common for clients to fall asleep during their reflexology session, and most people feel deeply relaxed and grounded following their treatment.
Most sessions usually last about an hour, but can be shorter, especially in follow up session where 30-45 minutes is sufficient.
In some older cultures, such as Egypt, China, Peru and some native Indian cultures of North America, Reflexology has been around for 3000 – 4000 years. There exists a well known pictograph of healers doing hand and foot pressure techniques on receivers in some Egyptian pyramids. In western cultures reflexology has been around for about 100 years. An ear, nose and throat specialist, Dr. William Fitzgerald, studied anaesthetic techniques by using pressure points on the hands and feet and brought the knowledge to America. Eunice Ingham followed in his footsteps, elaborating on the points of the feet and hands, and developing a detailed chart mapping the related organs and body parts found in each foot. Variations of this chart are found throughout the world.
Absolutely. I often give my clients “homework”, so that they can work on certain points at home between two appointments, and for sporadic treatment of some aches and pains. Our health is at our fingertips!
Reactions after a treatment
Various reactions may occur following a reflexology session. These, too, are subtle, and are often not recognized by many people as a result of the reflexology therapy. Many of the reactions are positive signs that the session is part of a healing process; other symptoms are indicative of the body's attempts to return to a state of balance and harmony. Symptoms usually last for 24-48 hours. Reactions may include: Increased energy Enhanced sleep or disrupted sleep patterns Relief from pain More mobile joints Tiredness (some clients find that they need more sleep in order for the body to rest and repair) Skin rashes, pimples, or spots (due to elimination of toxins) Frequent bowel movements, diarrhea (cleansing, elimination of toxins) Increased mucus (nasal discharge, vaginal discharge) Increased urination to release toxins Flu-like symptoms – suppressed underlying illness Emotional or psychological release (crying) Whatever the reactions these are part of the healing crisis and need to take place to cleanse the body. Drink warm water or herbal teas to assist this process.